Monday, August 13, 2018

Photo by Martyn Griffiths

Nothing could have stopped the first ever SurfAid Cup Perth. West Aussies braved 50 km winds, rain, low temperatures and challenging surf in support of their island neighbours in Indonesia. Raising nearly $50,000, their support will bring clean water and sanitation, basic healthcare and improved nutrition programs to remote villages near the places we all love to surf. 

A powerful front moved slower than anticipated, continuing to dish up one last day of strong onshore winds, rain, and plenty of well-overhead swell for the SurfAid Cup. Every single competitor rose to the challenge, testing their paddle fitness, picking off sections and putting on a great show for the judges, teammates and spectators alike.

Photo by Martyn Griffiths

SurfAid’s partners Surfing WA were instrumental in withstanding the gruelling conditions, and also in bringing the event to Scarborough Beach for the first time, having generously hosted the SurfAid Cup inside the Drug Aware Pro in Margaret River since 2012. The Cup was enthusiastically welcomed to the Perth metro beaches. Moving up the coast with the comp was this year’s Fundraising Champions Macquarie Bank, who raised nearly $14,000 this year, bringing their total SurfAid Cup fundraising efforts to date to over $50,000. Macquarie Team Captain Dan Bolt said the Cup was 'a super event put on by a team with loads of persistence. Operating in marginal conditions is something SurfAid excel at and having the founder at the beach all day, when he didn’t need to be, shows just how much he cares. A great event with great people contributing to continue the fight'.

Photo by Steph Crowley-Clough

Also travelling up the coast was a team of groms from the Margaret River Surf School, who defeated URBNSURF, West Coast Frothers and Macquarie Bank in a hotly contested final, crowning these ripping grommets SurfAid Cup Perth Surf Champions! Solomon Pogue Englert from Margaret River Surf School thought one trophy wasn't enough: winning himself the Best Wipeout award when his legrope lassoed him on his way out of the gates for the first heat of the day! He definitely stayed on his feet out in the water, posting strong scores all day for his team.

The head of the Margaret River Surf School, Jarrad Davies showed why his coaching skills are in such high demand, captaining his team of junior rippers to victory and capping off a lesson for his groms in giving back. 'Indonesia is a place we love to holiday and surf, so we were super keen to support this amazing cause! We invited the groms we coach to join our surf team and assist with fundraising, using it as an opportunity to create awareness amongst our future generation. Winning the 2018 SurfAid Cup was a bonus! The team spirit was awesome and the event was really well put together, we are stoked'! Jarrad Davies said. 

Photo by Steph Crowley-Clough

The other fundraising teams who challenged these finalists in the water were Brother of Mine who warmed wind-battered hands with perfect espressos at the Frothin Coffee van, two teams of Surfing Mums and their rugged up bubs, and Colonial Brewing Co who defrosted the tribe with a few tasty brews at the afterparty at El Grotto.

Kellie Baldwin from Perth Surfing Mums said, 'with so many Perth Surfing Mums travelling to remote areas of Indonesia for waves we felt that SurfAid was a way of being able to give back to those communities in a positive and sustainable way. The past 8 weeks from when we first signed up has been an amazing journey. Learning how super supportive our own Surfing Mums village was, coming together to reach what we first believed was unachievable and then exceed our goal!  Donning that SurfAid cup rashy felt like the perfect reward, even though conditions were less than average it showcased our determined spirits'. 

Founder, Dr. Dave Jenkins was impressed by the level of surfing from every team and the hospitality from the community. 'To be so warmly welcomed in Perth and to know that so many more mums and kids will have a chance at a better life is incredible. We’re humbled and grateful for the support'.

Thanks to SurfAid’s mates Jack Haslau, Lachie Mitchell D’Raine, Chloe Weir, Will Barrett, Jesse Molloy, Zac Ogram, Jed Gradisen, Ben Gradisen and Fletcher Llanwarne, who generously donated their time to post some solid scores and help their teams navigate gnarly seas.

Photos can be viewed HERE

Video production can be viewed HERE

Enormous thanks to all our supporters who made 

the first ever SurfAid Cup Perth a reality!