Newcastle Beach hosted the Raw Pro Junior arguably bringing some of the best young body boarders in the world.
The soaring temperatures meant that the competition was greeted by a wave of beachgoers bringing new spectators to the action. Showing skill beyond their years, the young competitors made what they could and more of the challenging conditions they were offered.
First prize of a trip to Hawaii’s Pipeline coaxed some of the best young boarders in Australia into the swell of Newcastle Beach.
With plans for the Raw Pro Junior Series to expand in the future, local talent Kieran Schuck said , “Newcastle Beach is a great place for a comp so even if the comp does expand, Newcastle would still be the place for it.”
Despite Schuck’s intense knowledge of the local swell he still believed that his stiffest competition came in the form of Western Australian, Lewy Finnigan. “Today my biggest competition is Lewy Finnnigan, I’d love to compete against him more,” added Schuck.
Undoubtedly the most consistent competitor of the day, Lewy Finnigan boasted about the advantages of crossing the nation to compete against some of the east’s best.
“It’s awesome coming over here and seeing how the locals surf. In W.A. you don’t hear about how the east boys surf and the waves are different,” said Finnigan.
In an enormous upset early in the competition, talented favourite for the under 16’s, Lauchie Cramsie (Queensland), was knocked from the division in the second round, showing that the tricky conditions effected even the competition favourites.“The conditions just meant I waited too long for a wave and missed my chance,” says Cramsie.
After a day of tough competition and challenging conditions, the Western Australian talent showed up the boys in the east. Lewy Finnigan took out first prize and will be making his way to Honululu, Hawaii. Fellow Western Australian and first time East coast competitor, George Humphreys, took out the 16 and under winning the chance to travel to any competition on the east coast after making the trip east with no help from sponsors. Terry McKenna, IBA General Manager said, “ It was an awesome day and it will be bigger next year”