GISBORNE teenager Stella Smith turned on a commanding performance at the national surfing championshios here yesterday to retain the women’s stand-up paddleboard title. Pictures by Paul Rickard
Smith receives surfing’s traditional shoulder carry on the beach after posting 17.6 out of a possible 20 for her two best waves, 7.2 points clear of second-placed Alexis Poulter of Waihi.
The men’s SUP final was a different story. Taranaki surfer Jamie Andrews led up to the last minute when Raglan’s Daniel Kereopa's last ride of the final earned him enough points to clinch his second national SUP crown — 15.8 to Andrews’ 14.8 with Sean Hovell (13.2) third and fellow Gisborne surfer Geoff Pardoe (8.2) fourth. The multi-talented Kereopa has also won open, under-18 and senior shortboard titles, and a longboard title over his impressive career. He is pictured (right) embracing Andrews after the final. The nationals were scheduled to finish today.