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The 2013 Mollymook Longboarders Charity Classic was held over the weekend of 10/11 August in glorious early spring type weather, with a mostly off-shore wind, and with a mixture of fair to good waves.  The contest was surfed both days at Mollymook Reef, with small inconsistent 2-4 foot waves that were adversely affected by an incoming tide that peaked mid-morning both days. Added to the mix was a fairly ferocious shore break that saw some spectacular crashes from surfers attempting to wring as much out of the waves as possible, and perhaps step off their boards onto the beach (which some did but most didn’t).  Mollymook Reef is a great vantage point that places spectators close to the action and allows their applause and hooting for the best rides and best wipe-outs to be heard and acknowledged by the surfers involved.  The contest was well supported with 72 competitors from varied places between Narooma and Sydney, with a large crew of about 15 from North Curly Longboardriders.

Saturday got underway as usual with the Open 8ft division in perhaps the best conditions of the contest, but still far from optimum for the shorter boards. But no surprises when regular finalists Christian Pimm, Ray Lawrence, Rob Couriel, Rhys Williams and Matty Cook all progressed to the semis with impressive surfing that included almost the full range of possible manoeuvres.  There was some great riding in the heats of the other six divisions, with perhaps the Open 9 foot and the Old Mal being the stand-outs.  In the Open 9 foot, Ray Lawrence, Christian Pimm and Matty Cook again made the conditions look much better than they were with powerful surfing at both ends of their boards. Junior Declan Wyton came second to Christian Pimm in his heat with some neat footwork and looked to be possibly the dark horse of the division. The Old Mal division saw Gerringong junior Fred Stovin-Bradford surf at a level well beyond his years. Ray Lawrence also surfed in this division on an immaculate looking Wallace board that he rode like his usual 9 footer with considerable tip-time and powerful turns.  As in recent years, the Over 48 division was the biggest with 28 competitors, and saw locals Phil Jirsa, Greg Furmage, and Ross Tomsen win their round 1 heats. The Over 58 division was well supported with 15 surfers, of whom 4 were over 65; all absolute legends; Ken Gray and Mike Greentree (who resemble that description) both won their heats with a bit of style. In the Juniors, Declan Wyton and Fred Stovin-Bradford clearly won their heats and impressed with their obvious grommet enthusiasm to give anything a go. The Over 38 division was the smallest of the age divisions, but was keenly contested with Dean Cristallo, Jason Skinner, Rob Couriel and Jack Daniels (appearing on behalf of sponsor Jim Beam) the pick of the crew in the heats.  By the end of a long 28 heat Saturday, only the semi-finalists in the Over 48s remained to be determined.

Sunday morning arrived with what seemed to most to be a deterioration in wave conditions at Molly Reef; however, on the low tide there were still contestable waves to be had, and the decision was made to continue there. As the tide rose, the best bank moved a little way north of Saturday’s contest area and continued to provide reasonably contestable waves for the rest of the contest, particularly for most of the finals, but again with a crunching shore-break. Despite the move, which included shifting the judging area, the action was still easily viewed from the grass at the Reef, and most of the crew preferred to watch from there in the more sociable conditions. The remaining Over 48 heats were completed first-up in variable conditions that provided most riders with at least five waves, but needed more careful wave selection than Saturday conditions. Locals Phil Jirsa, Greg Furmage, and Rob Maher all won their heats to progress to the semis.  The first semis were the Open 8 foot, that saw the same culprits from the heats progress to the final, joined by George Haskas who edged out Dean Cristallo who couldn’t find the waves to suit his powerful style.  In the Over 58 semis, locals dominated, with Laurie Andrew, Mike Greentree, Greg Furmage, and Nic de Jong progressing to the final along with visitors, but long-time Mollymook competitors, Ken Gray and David Pimm.  The standard again lifted in the Open 9 foot semis, with Declan Wyton winning his heat with two brazen landed 360 manoeuvres, from Matty Cook.  In the other heat, Christian Pimm continued in fine style with near vertical turns and landed reos, and was a clear winner from Tom Leach.  The surprise was the failure of Ray Lawrence to progress, missing his first Mollymook 9 foot final in years.  Regrettably an interference call saw Steve Rutten miss out on a final berth in the Over 48s, but other locals, Neale Ashby, Rob Maher, Greg Furmage, and Rod Dale (well he’s almost a local) progressed along with George Haskas into his second final.

The Finals heats began with the Juniors and was a battle between Fred Stovin-Bradford and Declan Wyton, with Fred just edging out Declan.  Both showed nimble footwork that had many older hands in awe.  In the Over 58s, Ken Gray and Mike Greentree ran out of steam and couldn’t reproduce their earlier form, and Greg Furmage, who was as usual very patient, had the win over David Pimm (the second oldest competitor).  Ray Lawrence had some compensation from missing the Open 9 foot final by being the clear winner of the Old Mal final with traditional style, from Bryce Heap, who hadn’t ridden an Old Mal before the contest. On the day the heavier board seemed to suit Ray’s style. Rhys Williams who finished fourth produced a great coffin ride, whilst Chris Brown easily won the best shore-break wipe-out.  In the Open 8 foot final, Matty Cook took the early lead, with some long nose rides, but Christian Pimm overtook him with his final wave that again saw some near vertical turns and landed reos in the shore break. Ray Lawrence again couldn’t find the waves to suit his powerful riding style, and finished third. George Haskas, changed his board quickly after the 8 foot final to have a win over Tim Reilly in the Over 48 final. The contest between the four locals for the minor placings was won by Rob Maher. In the Over 38 final Dean Cristallo needed a 7+ score on his last wave to overtake Jack Daniels, but could only manage 6s, and so finished second.  The Open 9 foot final was the last heat of the contest, and was worth waiting for. Often in contests the conditions deteriorate for the finals, but although there was a light onshore sea-breeze, there were plenty of waves of good size and shape to sort out the pecking order. As with the 8 foot final, Christian Pimm and Matty Cook were the stand-out riders and again produced an almost master class for the spectators. Matty again got off to the best start only to be pipped by Christian’s last wave score.  Tom leach finished third and on the day couldn’t match their standard; but it was one place better for him than 2012; second in 2014 Tom?  Declan Wyton maybe lost a bit of focus in this final and didn’t reproduce his semi-final form.

Honorary club members Graham Sorensen, head judge, and Stephen Pinnington, result tallyer, were essential to the smooth progress of the contest.  Graham as usual provided judging panels with balanced guidance about appropriate scoring when necessary, which ensured minimal disparity of scores. Steven worked in relative obscurity keeping the results board up-to-date

The food tent was, as usual, the social hub and was marvellously run by Julie Sicco, with assistance from Sue Maris and Michell Morrisey. Jim Sourry was a deft hand at the BBQ on both days.  Thanks to all club members, under the direction of President Cazza, who set up and cleaned up both days.  The music was again a major ingredient in the vibe and thanks to Laurie Andrew for his DJing.  The only complaint was about the classical selection on Sunday morning, but was made by a probable aficionado of hillbilly music. Laurie was also the MC at the presentation and kept all amused with his insights and commentary.

Thanks to the following sponsors: Cronulla Car Sales; Keith Purvis Podiatry; Deering Street Printers; and, Hampton Hire and Storage Ulladulla. Special thanks to Kent Saunders and Southern Man Surf Shop Ulladulla for organising the bountiful competitor prize pool that included items from: Rip Curl; Billabong; Balin; Creatures of Leisure;  Boost Mobile; Dragon; O’neill; Arnette; Rusty; Quiksilver; Nixon; Sea Cured; Xcel; Dakine; Peak; and, Volcom. Soul Surf also provided some wax.  Lewis Art and Design produced the contest T-shirts. Ken Peek shaped and glassed the immaculately finished Sea Crest longboard that was the raffle prize.

The proceeds from the 2013 contest will be donated to local charities, and community groups and services.

Visit the club web site at www.mollymooklongboarders.com  for other information.




1    Christian Pimm 1    Christian Pimm 1    Jack Daniels 1    George Haskas
2    Matty Cook 2    Matty Cook 2    Dean Cristallo 2    Tim Reilly
3    Tom Leach 3    Ray Lawrence 3    Jason Skinner 3    Rob Maher
4    Tony Boyd 4    George Haskas 4    Tony Boyd 4    Rod Dale
5    Declan Wyton 5    Rob Couriel 5    Losal 5    Greg Furmage
6    Jack Daniels 6    Rhys Williams 6    Alex Hay-Mackenzie 6    Neale Ashby


1   Greg Furmage 1    Ray Lawrence 1    Fred Stovin-Bradford
2   David Pimm 2    Bryce Heap 2    Declan Wyton
3   Laurie Andrew 3    Fred Stovin-Bradford 3    Caellum Purvis
4   Nic de Jong 4    Rhys Williams 4    Curtis Wright
5   Ken Gray 5    Andy Tyler 5    Jake Skinner
6   Mike Greentree 6    Chris Brown