Sport

Triple treat at surfing titles

Newly crowned Australian longboard champion Jackson Close admires the view at Greenmount Beach. Close used his surfing nous to ensure he snared the best waves at North Haven to claim the title.
Newly crowned Australian longboard champion Jackson Close admires the view at Greenmount Beach. Close used his surfing nous to ensure he snared the best waves at North Haven to claim the title. Blainey Woodham

THREE local surfers weaved their special brand of magic on boards at the Australian Surf Festival in Port Macquarie to snare national titles.

Tweed Heads' Beau Nixon and Shakira Westdorp, from Tugun, won the men's and women's stand-up paddleboard crowns at the festival, which is reserved for competitors in longboard, SUP board and short board categories.

Also grabbing top place on the medals dais was the coolest man on the waves, Coolangatta's Jackson Close, who reigned supreme in the longboard competition.

Close defended his Australian longboard title on North Haven beach, handing in superb efforts at his first and last rides in the final to claim the title from two of the best longboarders in the business, Darren O'Rafferty (Bonny Hills) and Sapphire Beach's New South Wales champion Jared Neal.

A determined Close was quick to secure a big score early, nailing an 8.00 with his opening

effort, which featured a big re-entry, and then he made a closing 7.35 ride to snatch victory.

"I'm so happy," Close said at the medals presentation. "I think I put too much pressure on myself this year to try to win it again and I was getting so nervous.

"Last night I was hoping that it wasn't a close-out shore break so it wasn't a lucky dip who got the waves and who didn't.

"I ended up getting my wish, so we were all in the one position and it all came down to picking them (waves), picking the right one that ran all the way.

"I'm just on top of the world. I feel great."

Nixon took his title against the most talented competitors in the country, including three Queenslanders who matched waves with him in the final - Sunshine Coasters Geoff Breen and Keahi De Aboitiz and Close, who was striving for a second national crown.

The three Queenslanders surfed solidly, but in the end a 7.5 after a big floater nudged Nixon to the front when it mattered most.

"I feel amazing. I've trained so hard for this event and I'm so glad I came away with a win. I'm over the moon right now," Nixon said.

Also over the moon was Westdorp.

"I'm stoked. The level of the girls' surfing has improved so much over the last couple of years and it's only going to get harder and harder, so to take it out over the other girls who have been ripping is great," said Westdorp, who defended last year's title.

Topics:  port macquarie



Surfer's shark tale: 'That's when it's come straight at me'

Pictured at Kingscliff this morning Rodney Clark has survived a Great White encounter.

"I lost sight of my son because a wave hit him"

Sleeping rough for Fred's Place

ALL RUGGED UP: From left, Lenny McLennan, Jason McDonald, Gerard Robinson, Gordon Rhodes and Stuart Burrows prepare for Fred's Place Sleep Out.

Tweed locals show support for homeless by sleeping outside in boxes.

Latest deals and offers

SIXTY MILES AHEAD sign with Eclipse Records, prepare new album 'Insanity'

Sixty Miles Ahead sign with Eclipse. Photo Contributed

Sixty Miles Ahead to release new album on Eclipse

Thy Art Is Murder are killing it

See Thy Art is Murder on their killer tour happening right now. Photo Contributed

We talk with Thy Art is Murder about touring, babies, and new music

Date announced for Prince tribute concert

A Prince tribute concert will take place later this year

Matt Damon is taking a break from acting

Matt Damon is taking a break to spend time with his family

Police foiled terrifying 1m plot to kidnap Katie Price

Police foiled a £1 million plot to kidnap Katie Price and her family

Kristen Bell's baby confession

Kristen Bell once pretended to be asleep when her baby woke up early

Queensland's $1 town goes under the hammer today

The township of Yelarbon is up for sale.

Unprecedented auction of town's business centre with no reserve

Work starts on $15M Caloundra apartment building

Turning the first sod at the Aqua View Apartments site in Kings Beach are (from left) husband-and-wife developers Alex Yuan and Stella Sun with construction company Tomkins director Mike Tomkins and Councillor Tim Dwyer.

Developers excited about addition to Kings Beach skyline

Plans revealed for 1500-lot 'master-planned community'

Precinct will be bounded by Boundary St and Shoesmith Rd

Ecco Ripley sales run sparks prime release

MOVING IN: Sekisui House has announced the release of more residential blocks at Ecco Ripley.

Sekisui House is preparing to unveil more land at Ecco Ripley

Massive residential 9-storey high-rise hit by delays

An artist’s impression of the eight-storey-high apartment complex that Bernoth Holdings wants to build in South Toowoomba, next to the City Golf Club.

Developer struggles to get approved high-rise development started