Today saw a massive day of competition as the deciding rounds and final heats confirmed who would be crowned champion of the 10th Annual Billabong Oz Grom Cup presented by SmoothStar.
The conditions were a repeat of day four with Diggers Beach producing light offshore winds and three to four foot wedges consistently throughout the day as all competitors impressed the judges with high quality rides. This morning’s earliest heats began in the southern corner of the beach with the U8 mixed, U10’s and U12’s division before the swell picked up, providing opportunity for the older divisions to tackle the larger surf in the middle bank.
The U14 females final was intended to proceed at the southern end of the beach, however was moved to the middle, larger bank when all four competitors requested so with the event officials. All finalists were eager to take on the grunt of the two metre easterly swell and did not disappoint. Sisters and Sunshine Coast locals Eliza and Rosie Richardson went head to head with Talia Tebb (Avoca Beach) and Lucy Darragh (Kiama Downs) each fighting to claim the win until there was no time left. Goofy footer Darragh took out the final with a solid few six point rides.
Female domination was seen across all divisions with high scores appointed to the U10 females, including Milton’s Everly Morgan total heat score of 18.33 as a result of two excellent left hand wedges. Leihani Kaloha Zoric continued with the same sentiment in the U12’s heat with a perfect ten point ride. Zoric continued to back up her first score until the final minutes until she paddled in as the winner of her division.
Harley Walter (Angourie) absolutely dominated his semi final match up against Sammuel Lowe (Illawarra) and Sol Gruendling (Northern Beaches). Walters threw away a 6.83 ride after scoring a 9.47 and 9.0, highlighting his progression in surfing, which is an incredible sight to see. His critical manoeuvres continued throughout the U18 men’s final, taking the lead and claiming his title against Coffs Harbour local Creed Smart who needed as 8.87 to win.
To wrap up the massive five day event, Max McGillivray (Evans Head) surfed with style and provided spectators with something to watch, posting a perfect ten point ride and a 7.83.
Every year the Billabong Oz Grom Cup presented by SmoothStar highlights the immense talent amongst Australia’s junior surfers. With high performance and passion, each competitor throughout the past five days was a testament to the culture and future of surfing.
This event would not have been made possible without the support of Billabong, SmoothStar, Hoey Moey, Coffs Harbour City Council, Club Med, Coffs Harbour Boardriders, Coopers Surf Australia and the local Coffs Harbour community.