Coast juniors set to surf for state

AT least five Gold Coast surfers are near-certainties to represent Queensland at the Arnette Australian junior championships, even though the third and final round of the Queensland junior championships are still to be held on the Sunshine Coast this weekend.

Kirra's Jack Freestone won the first and second rounds of the under 18 section, while Snapper's Noa Deane has had a win and a second in the under 16 group.

Other contenders include Snapper's Thomas Woods in the under 18 section, Kirra's Harry Wheeler in the under 16 and Eden Putland in the under 16 girls.

The Doyle twins are also a chance, with Brodie in the under 18s and Amiya in the under 16s.

The individual titles will be calculated on competitors' best three rounds. This weekend's final round is limited to the best 24 from the early rounds.

The Australian junior championships will be held on the Sunshine Coast in early December.

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  • ONE wonders when Surfing Australia might host a WISA championship, either for the juniors or seniors, on home turf and surf.

The last WISA titles were held in 1982 at Duranbah Beach. The open men's title was won by Tom Curren, who went on to win three ASP world titles.

Currently, the WISA championships are on in Costa Rica and surfers from more than 40 countries are competing, which gives an Olympic Games atmosphere.

The benefits for the Tweed and Gold Coast in terms of accommodation and business would be a huge bonus for the local economy and would no doubt attract large numbers of Australian and international visitors.

The Australian team is currently sharing the lead with the United States, with host nation Costa Rica third.

Its 16-year-old champion, Carlos Muniz, has pulled off the impossible by winning both his heats with two interferences and three broken leashes, keeping his country in the top three. Hawaii is only 10 points behind in fourth.

Australia has enlisted Barton Lynch for his first appearance as head coach, whereas the Americans are relying on ex-pat West Australian big-wave champ Ian Cairns to steer them home.

Two years ago, the United States hired former Coolangatta world champ, Peter Townend, but still haven't been able to beat the Aussies since 1984.

The finals of the Billabong WISA games will run off tomorrow and you can watch it live on the net early tomorrow morning.

Rainbow Bay's Dane Pioli (long boards) and Currumbin's Sam Cornish (open women's) are part of the Aussie team and are tipped to do well in the first WISA titles.

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  • FOLLOWING the success of the Fish Fry (short board fish shapes) gathering at Currumbin Alley, organiser Grant Newby will put together a wooden surfboard day on Sunday.

Grant has enlisted Paul Jensen, of Washington State, who has been conducting a five-day hollow wooden surfboard building class at the Currumbin Eco Village. Paul is the founder of the revival in hollow wooden surfboards and now conducts classes all over the world.

If you have a wooden board or would like to know more about building one, be at the alley on Sunday.

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  • MARITIME Safety Queensland has a discussion paper out detailing an interim change to jet skis and tow-in rules.

The ruling is suggesting extending the distance between normal surf riders and skis from the current 60 metres to 200 metres.

This would be welcome news at Currumbin Alley for recreational surfers, putting more distance between them and jet skis.

For more information go to www.msq.qld.gov.au.



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