Big swell, Big prizes and Big names expected for the NSW North leg of the Jim Beam Surftag Australian Series, this Saturday January 7th 2012.
The New Year brings event five of the national series to Dixon Park in Newcastle, where local Merewether Boardriders are looking to take back the title with ex WCT surfers Luke Egan and Matt Hoy named in a strong Merewether squad.
2011 event winners North Shelley are looking to get back-to-back wins at Newcastle this weekend at the Jim Beam Surftag. IMAGE CREDIT: Grant Sproule
With $3,500 in prize money, a boat trip to the Maldives and qualification into the Jim Beam Surftag Australian Championships up for grabs, defending NSW North champions North Shelley Boardriders are eager to clinch a back-to-back victory.
“We are all really pumped up for this weekend, surfing against a high calibre of surfers like Hoy and Egan is great, it keeps us older guys on our game”, said Russ Maloney surfing again for defending champs North Shelley.
“Port Macquarie are going to be the team to be beat this year with guys like Daren O’Rafferty and Mick Campbell they are one of the best teams in the challenge. It’s not all about big names though you can make it through with one gun surfer and utilize your power waves”.
Maloney was the highest point scorer in the 2011 final, with an epic performance pushing his team over the line in a nail biting finish which saw the underdogs bring home the trophy, over well known world tour surfers.
“This is one of the only events we get to travel together as a team, our supporters come along and are a huge force for the teams success. Most of the guys bring their families along and make a trip out of it, we are all hoping to make it through so we can have a road trip to Byron next month”, said Maloney.
Avoca are looking to have Adrian ‘ACE’ Buchan and Matt Wilkinson as part of their team which finished third at last years Australian Championships. Along with Umina who are itching to be one of the four teams to qualify for the Jim Beam Surftag National final in February, with former ASP World Tour surfer turned judge Drew Courtney.
Former WCT surfer Ben Dunn will spearhead the Saltwater Boardriders team (Old Bar) who have not competed in the Jim Beam Surftag since 2009.
Sixteen clubs from the NSW Central and Mid North Coast will compete in the tag team format, which pits teams of five surfers against each other in one-hour heats. Each surfer has 12 minutes to catch three scoring rides with their second wave score doubled as a ‘powerwave’.
The National series is Australia's largest team surfing competition featuring a combined prize pool of over $130,000. The Jim Beam Surftag Australian Series provides a national competition for over 80 boardriding clubs to determine Australia's No.1 club
For all Jim Beam Surftag information visit www.globalsurftag.com
For live results and event photographs follow www.facebook.com/surftag
The 2012 Jim Beam Surftag Australian Series is proudly supported by FCS, Tracks and www.theperfectwave.com.au
The 2012 Jim Beam Surftag Australian Series is a supporter of www.surfaidinternational.org
2012 Jim Beam Surftag Australian Series Schedule
October 21 – Surf Industry Challenge – Winners – O’Neill
October 22 – Trade Off – Winners – The Labourers
November 19 – WA Championships – Winners – Trigg Point
December 3 – VIC Championships – Winners – Phillip Island
January 7 – NSW North Championships at Newcastle
January 14 – QLD Championships at Duranbah
January 21/22 – NSW South Championships at North Narrabeen
February 5 – Women’s Championships at Curl Curl
February 21 – Boardriders Cup at Ballina
February 22/23 – Australian Championships at Ballina