The world of competitive surfing
KINGSCLIFF'S Mitchell James barely has enough time to unpack his bags from Bali before having to jump on another plane to head to the next surfing contest.
Mitchell, who had only just returned after competing in the Billabong Pro Junior event in Bali, managed to squeeze in two days of school before jumping on a plane and flying south to compete with the Far North Coast surf team at the Arnette NSW Junior Surfing Titles at Foster-Tuncurry.
He is one of eight surfers from the region who make up the under-18 squad, which also comprises Sam Clift from Tweed Heads, Joel Ford and Regan Fredericks from Cabarita, and Tian van den Burg from Casuarina.
He is seeded second behind Sam Clift for the FNC team, who will be up against the best young surfers in the state.
With six state titles up for grabs along with spots in Team NSW for the Arnette Australian Junior Surfing Titles, competition will be fierce as 220 surfers from each of the 10 surfing NSW regions do battle.
While many people would be trying to cope with jet lag, Mitchell can't wait to hit the waves again after his experiences in Bali.
“The waves over there were great and the standard of surfing was really high,” Mitchell said.
“I surfed well but not good enough - there were some really good surfers over there.
“Even though I didn't place, I think my surfing improved heaps.
“Hopefully I can go alright in the state juniors.”
As is the case with many promising young surfers, Mitchell will have little time to rest after the NSW titles, as he is preparing for the Red Bull Junior Surf Masters at Duranbah Beach later in August.
At least for that tournament, he won't have far to travel.