Hamish Christophers was too good for his rivals in the 2012 Opunake Kneelo Surfing Classic held in challenging conditions at Opunake's Middleton's Beach at Labour Weekend.
The reigning pro-junior world champion surfed with power and flow throughout the Opunake Surf Inn-sponsored event.
In the men's open final, Christophers went up against Venezuelan Armando Colucci, and Taranaki kneelos Jamie Andrews and Jason Farqhar.
Christophers headed to the left-hand point with Farqhar, while the others chose to sit on the beach break in front of the judging tent.
Christophers locked in a good scoring wave at the start of the final, and was able to back that up with his best wave towards the end of the heat.
Showing all his competition experience, Christophers powered into his turns and was able to generate the speed needed to pull off his manoeu- vres.
Colucci, fresh from a surf contest in Spain, showed his skills, linking turns and re-entries on the short punchy beach break, to stay in touch.
The Venezuelan took out second place from Andrews on his last wave.
Andrews and Farqhar surfed with determination, but were starved of waves that offered any high-scoring potential.
In other finals, New Plymouth's Rebecca Heemi returned home from university to take out the women's event from New Plymouth trio Eli Stevens, Jo Moore and Emma Croton.
The under-18 national scholastic champion, Maukino Skelton took out the age-group final, showing he is a rising star.
His wave selection and manoeuvres gave him the edge over new kneelos Locky Stevens (New Plymouth) Johnathan Tahau (Opunake) and Eli Stevens (New Plymouth).
- Taranaki Daily News
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