October - Point Score Written by Danny McGaw
For three days before the Sunday contest, the club’s doomers and gloomers, with their “World is Nigh” banners, were predicting a no contest day. “Strong north-easterlies and no swell,” they said. “Have it on a back beach, instead,” they said. “We’ll cancel the point score and have it the following weekend,” they said. Enough said, what the heck !!!
Bemused, good old Mother Ocean looked down her nose at the club's boofheads, shook her head and thought, “Stuff ya’s. You’s are all big sheilas at the best of times, so I'm just gonna spite you's bastards by doin' somethin' unexpected!"
Sunday morning, the clouds hung heavy to the west where small, coastal mountains hugged those same clouds to themselves like torn, threadbare shawls. To the east …… the Dawn. The Sun, risen from its sleep, yawned and stretched with fingers of light to pierce the clouds that threatened the day to come. The Sun looked down upon the ocean and, under its gaze, she came alive with a trillion diamonds of light playing across her serene face, dazzling the eye of the beholder. In silent symphony, the wind blew gently from the south-west, sculpturing the 3 to 5 foot faces to smooth, glassy gems of dark green delight. Oh so nice, ……. despite the clouds, the morning was warm with the gentle caress of Spring.
Hmmm … nice as it all was, things got a bit hectic without Bob Standing in attendance but we managed to get the judge's tent the right way up and the chairs in place. Fergo was “in charge” evidently. Yes, I repeat Fergo was “in charge” …. God help us! What seemed like madcap actually, to tell the truth, was madcap after all. Go figure. Thankfully, Warwick Latter kept it going nicely. That's despite Fergo standing around, rubbing his head, while trying to stress everyone out but, sensibly, we just ignored him.
The boys were thrown in the water at 8 am and a good heat it was too. Poor old Dundee paddled out with an eager pack of young dogs on his heels, Dan Johnson, Harrison Taylor and Marcus Willock. All hot juniors.
Dundee took a few good rides but didn’t fire as he usually does. Maybe having to compete with those three happy horrors got to him. A brave effort from Dundee but he was trampled underfoot as Dan took a beautiful wave and proceeded to shred it with drop-knees, a walkin’ the nose, a cheater 5, hang 5, hang 10 and then turning around to walk back to the tail with ease and style. A judge gave him a 9.5!! Woah, look out Dundee, there’s a steam roller a comin’!
Harrison cut loose on every big set wave unwary enough to come his way. Big power, with every move as he blasted down the line. If he could slip in a few traditional moves he’d be classic to watch, and I betcha he eventually does just that.
Marcus just keeps getting better and better, stronger and stronger. He doesn’t let anyone intimidate him when he goes for a wave. If there’s a non-competitor on the inside, then they don’t exist. The guy has the makings of an outstanding longboarder and the club is proud to have him and his sister Sarah as part of our crew.
The waves just kept a comin’ and a doin’ their magic all morning. The Sun triumphantly broke through, dispelling the grey muck as blue skies started to canopy above us. A bloody beautiful day, so far it was.
A big heat this one. Two power house riders, Peter Lobb and Tony Willock, head to head. And in the other corners we’ve got the trickster, Benard Undertaker Olde, and Brad Mountain Man Taylor. Everyone with something to offer and off they went.
Brad got himself some long, long rides to set some nice scores but the day didn’t favour him by a mile. The day wasn’t good to a few of the stalwarts but, hey, what can ya do?
Benard and his coffin rides, he spent more time on his back than his feet. The best was his head in the tube ride as he coffin rode through a nice, fast section to the cheers of the crowd. I betcha he was getting those Morning of the Earth blue brain flashes mega. As for me, I get them walking down the street all the time …. Gawd damn those 70’s flashbacks, they get me every time!!!
Pete caught a nice bag of waves and milked all of them solid. His consistently good form always makes him a sure fire bet. His cohort in the power game, Tony Willock, hit back with some nice, deep, bottom turns. Leaning right over into bottom turns I swear “Big Daddy” was gripping the deck so hard with his toes you could him them crack from where the judges were plonked. A gutsy effort, from the club’s two power rangers.
The Retro heat was a bit dull as far as traditional style of surfing a retro. It was all retro small boards, twinnies or channelled and the guys surfed them the same way a regular short board is ridden today. Mind you they rode them excellently but there was no retro apparent except the age of the boards used. All accomplished short boarders, Robbie Pugh, Max Lobb, Dan Johnson, Marcus Willock and Storm Nitschke surfed exceptionally well in this heat.
Heat 4 and so much more. Fergo surprised the judges by catching a coupla good rides. One was a howler with some nice cutties and walkin’ the walk. He got so excited by his last ride that he just kept walking straight off the nose. The poor bastard thought he still had another two foot of board left. Nah, he doesn’t need glasses does he!
Max Lobb put in a solid performance on some very nice waves. A prospective powerhouse like his Dad, he showed nice control on some big moves. Max is another rider who could benefit from getting some traditional moves thrown into the mix to improve his scores.
Warwick Latter caught some medium length rides but wasn’t able to settle into his usually, consistently, good style. Wave choice and the battle for a wave with the free surfers may have had an effect. It was extremely competitive to get a wave at the point at the best of times throughout the day.
Peter Farley had a crook heat. The waves weren’t coming his way and what he did catch was not attune to his style of surfing, i.e. consistent and functional to get the job done and make the wave.
In black with a white stripe, very confusing amongst all the other black wetties, was Richard Gow. Richard got himself some very nice waves and showed a classy yet functional style that got him some good point scores from the judges.
By mid morning the wind had begun to shift east. The day’s warmth had increased as the last heat kicked off.
By then, the brekkie orders still hadn’t arrived. Bob Standing woulda had everyone fed, cleaned up and tucked into bed by now but nah, we was starving hungry by 10:30 and everyone was looking for Fergo. Yep, he’d ordered early at 9 am but hadn’t remembered to pick it all up. At this stage, he was still flopping around in the water like a sick mullet, trying to survive his heat.
By 11 am, we’re so undernourished we all had ribs like drover’s dogs and murderous at that. Fergo was harangued and put into action. Bloody hell, breakfast finally arrived. We fell on it like a pack of hyeanas. Fergo almost took me arm off trying to get his first … the bastard! At that time of morning, half the guys in the club normally woulda been thinking about washing down a feed with their first beer! God love us, where’s Bob when ya need him?
Final showdown for the day, and glad of it too. The wind was now easterly, the day had finally given up and was telling us to go. Yep, let’s get it over and done with.
Harold Nitschke, say that with a mouth full of peanuts. Harold had a so-so session highlighted with one long wave ridden well down the line. Nice wave, it sure was. Well done, mate!
Storm Nitschke, given the odds, you’d think the two Nitschkes would be related wouldn’t you? Well your right, they actually are. Amazing. Small world eh?
Anyway Storm got some nice waves but clearly didn’t do what he wanted to do on them. Keep going mate, ya gonna go from strength to strength if ya wanna concentrate on longboarding a bit more. He’s a good shortboarder, the old Storm, and one day soon he’ll be a good longboarder too. An all rounder and ain’t that the best way to travel.
Ya know, Paul POD O’Donnell just goes from strength to strength. POD is getting his mojo back real fine, in no time. My favourite dark horse that I’m still gonna put a bob on in the near future. Paul surfed very well with long rides and his signature “Wahooo …,” as he gets a long ride, arms up straight and giving a double thumbs up. Then, in no time, streaks by on yet another wave. It was a good, all round surfing performance from POD.
Bryce Parker gave it a good shot and got a wave or two to put a smile on his dial. Bryce is another junior longboarder with heaps of potential to go further and develop a class act.
The competiveness for a wave at the point got to Andrew Digby and really put him off his game. It was a complaint voiced by more than one competitor, but what to do?
The red flag goes up and it’s all over red rover. Funny old day, no one seemed to be firing on all cylinders, in or out of the water … except the juniors that is. Nothing fazes the little buggers.
The views expressed in this report are those of the author and may not be those of the Crescent Head Malibu Club.
Heat 1. Heat 2. Heat 3. Heat 4.
1. Dan Johnson 1. Peter Lobb 1. Max Lobb 1. Paul POD O'Donnell
2. Harrison Taylor 2. Tony Willock 2. Warwick Latter 2. Storm Nietschke
3. Marcus Willock 3. Brad Taylor 3. Fergo 3. Harold Nietschke
4. Dundee 4. Benard Olde 4. Richard Gow 4. Bryce Parker
5. Andrew Digby
Heat 5. Retro
1. Max Lobb
2. Marcus Willock
3. Robbie Pugh
4. Dan Johnson