Scott Trew, that’ll do nicely. All pics: Justin Majeks / Surfing WA
WA shortboard and longboard gun Denver Young, through to her first WSL final – to face multiple Whalebone winner Georgia Young (no relation).
Many, many times the WA champ, Georgia Young getting it done.
Will Crowe, over from Sydney and through to the semis.
Cottesloe’s Isolators Reef in the rain. (You’d be forgiven for flashing on the men in grey suits.)
6 July 19
Longboarders from across Oz have benefitted from sensational winter conditions with the 22nd Whalebone Longboard Classic kicking off at Isolators Reef in Cottesloe, Perth. The World Surf League Longboard Tour 1000 event saw Men’s semi-finalists and Women’s finalists decided in pulsing 3-4 feet waves.
In arguably one of the best days of surfing in the events long and illustrious history, surfers used every inch of their nine foot plus boards in hopes of impressing judges and spectators.
Jack Medland, WA’s Longboard State Champion for 2019, looked in sync with ocean in the opening heat of the day and kept his momentum rolling during his quarterfinal against Bryce Williams, posting a 13.57 two-wave combined total (from a possible 20) on his way to a semi-final appearance.
“I’m stoked the waves prevailed for us today and it looks like we’ve got a few good days coming up,” said Medland. “I’m just happy for the guys who travelled to WA to actually get some waves out here.”
Medland will take on Riley Thomson when competition continues tomorrow. Thomson looked right at home at his maiden Whalebone Classic, styling through some graceful footwork and powerful rail turns.
“I’m freezing right now, I can’t feel my hands or my feet,” said Thomson. “The waves have been really fun out there and I’m just stoked to make the semis on my first trip to Western Australia.”
Semi-final two will see Anthony Spencer take on William Crowe in what is also shaping up to one of the most anticipated heats of the event.
Spencer, a West Oz local used superior wave selection and critical top turns to post the highest combined total of the day, with a 13.88 (from a possible 20) which included a 7.25 and 6.63.
“I thrilled to get into the semis, it’ll be my best result at the Whalebone and I’m hoping I can make it through to the final,” said Spencer. “It’s been so nice and glassy all day, my toes are a bit frosty, but it’s great to be scores some consistent waves for the event.”
William Crowe first came to the Whalebone four years ago as an Under-18 Junior, but has grown in stature and ability, using his bigger frame to power hard off the bottom and throw spray on each manoeuvre.
“I’ve been here a few times, but I think this is about as good as it gets out there,” said Crowe. “I’m just taking it one heat at a time, but my ultimate goal is to make my mark on the World Longboard Tour.”
In the Women’s division, reigning event champion and local favourite Georgia Young looked unstoppable on her way to another Whalebone Classic final. Young looked right at home in the conditions on offer, making the most of surfing one of Perth’s most popular wave locations with just other surfers in the line up.
“It’s the perfect size out there, not too big, not too small, the walls are clean and wide open, it’s perfect longboarding conditions,” said Young. “It was just one of those mornings when you wake up and the swells here, the winds offshore and you know it’s going to be a good day.”
Fellow West Australian, Denver Young qualified for her maiden WSL LT final, after victory over Queenslander Kristy Quirk. A shortboarder by trade, Young claimed an Australian Junior Longboard Title in 2015 and has kept a malibu in her quiver ever since.
While no relation to Georgia Young, it will be the first ever Young versus Young Women’s Final.
“I grew up surfing here at Isolators and you never know what you’re going to get at this time of the year,” said Young. “I feel like Georgia has been the benchmark for so long and I’ve been chasing her tail for years, I saw her surfing out here when I was young and she’s been an inspiration for me.”
The Whalebone Classic was born in 1998 after local longboarder Peter Dunn, discovered a whale's rib bone immersed in the surf at Isolators and decided to host a longboarding competition in memory of the whale's spirit.
Great conditions are forecast again for Saturday with professional and amateur heats commencing from 7:30am.
"Today was definitely one of the best in Whalebone history,” said Surfing WA Competition Director Justin Majeks. “Despite some wet and wild weather over the past 24 hours, the spirit of the whale shone through providing great waves for surfers from right across the country.”
The Whalebone Classic is much more than just a surfing competition, with an impressive social calendar of events and activities for people to get involved with, as well as onsite catering, surf stalls, live music and much, much more.
For more information on this or any other WA event be sure to check out SURFING WA and follow Surfing WA social media platforms for event updates and information. You can also follow the event via the World Surf League mini site
- REPORT BY SURFING WA / WSL
WHALEBONE LONGBOARD CLASSIC SOCIAL SCHEDULE:
Thursday 4th July
FREE – Competition Registration Evening
6-8PM downstairs at The Cottesloe Beach Hotel.
Friday 5th July
FUNCTION - 'Business of Surfing' with guest speaker 1988 World Champion Barton Lynch
Doors open @ 5.30PM in the Perth CBD
Saturday 6th July
FREE – Live Music & Surfboard Giveaway from 7PM @ The Cottesloe Beach Hotel
Sunday 7th July
FREE - Event Presentations.
Doors Open 5pm Upstairs @ the Cottesloe Beach Hotel
ABOUT THE WHALEBONE LONGBOARD CLASSIC:
The Whalebone Classic was born in 1998 after local longboarder Peter Dunn, discovered a whale’s rib bone immersed in the surf at Isolators and decided to host a longboarding competition in memory of the whale’s spirit. Twenty-one years later, the competition has grown to become a much-loved tradition in the local community.