SA Champ Maree Scoops Wimpy Rossi Pro-Am Title

posted by Olivia Jones on 4th April 2004

South African Champion Craig Maree (Dbn) scooped first place in the pro division of the 4A rated Wimpy/ Rossi Pro-Am that took place at Margate main beach in one-metre surf on KZN’s south coast. Maree not only pocketed a R3 200 winner’s cheque but also 1 500 South African Bodyboarding Association (SABA) points which will improve his standing on the current SABA ratings. The event which has been running for eight years attracted a historic amount of 150 bodyboarders. There was a total of R10 000 up for grabs for the pro competitors with prizes for other divisions valued at over R25 000 supplied by Wimpy Margate, Rossi Bodyboards, Island Style and South Africa’s top bodyboarding website www.sixty40.co.za.

The pro final was a nail biting affair with talented young North Beach local Wesley Fischer hot on the heels of the more experienced Maree. The final results came down to the wire with a tie between first and second which saw Maree rise to the top. Talented Uvongo lifeguard Derek Footit, who was Saturday’s standout when he scored a perfect ten, once again bodyboarded like a star winning the prize for ‘best move’ he finished third overall in the final showdown. National team member Vaughn Harris (Southern Cape) put up a strong fight to overcome serious jet lag and finish fourth. Harris was also awarded the prize for ‘best judge’.

The women’s final which consisted of five contenders was taken by focused competitor Robyn Sorenson from Durban. There was a tussle for second and third place between the reigning SABA champion Inge Pieters (Margate) and former national team member Olivia Donald (Dbn). Following a split decision Pieters squeaked past Donald to claim second place. 16 year old Kara Wickens (Amanzimtoti) and Cape Town’s Catey Mellish placed fourth and fifth respectively.

National team member Darren Halse (Amanzimtoti) aced the drop knee division where bodyboarders ride in a kneeling stance as opposed to lying prone on their boards. Maree once again showed his mettle finishing in the runner up slot ahead of top rated Simon Hagen (CT) with seasoned North Beach local Sasha Taljaard taking fourth.

Top seed Wayne Beekman (Margate) put his local experience to good use in the men’s final defeating highly accomplished rider Steve Benson (Dbn). Bodyboarding coach Martin Otto (Margate) finished third ahead of Zululand’s Andre Marais.

The junior decider was controlled by Marc Watts (Dbn) with SA Champion Grant Lee (SKZN) in second. Wayne Smith (SKZN) and Zululand’s Rheinhard du Toit filled the remaining two slots.

Adam Morley (Southern Cape) dominated the boy’s final until being penalised with an interference call to place second behind south coast local Emile von Vollenhoven. Justin Zietsman (SKZN) placed third ahead of Neil Steenkamp (Zululand).

Local U/12 boy Terence Pieters gave his peers a run for their money ousting fellow south coast resident Dune Barker (SKZN) into second with Durban’s Bradley Moys in third and Johnno Mellish (CT) fourth.

Lize-Mari Ras (Zululand) and Jocelyn Norton (Margate) took first and second respectively in the girl’s under 16 final.

There were no challengers for Mike van Huyssteen the former Durbanite who now resides in Gauteng as a result he cruised to another easy victory further cementing his lead on the SABA ratings.

The standard of bodyboarding in the development division proved that there are some talented youngsters coming through the ranks; Paul Mitchell (Dbn) won the battle with Jacques de Beer (Dbn) finishing second. Wiseman Simonsen (SKZN) and newcomer Carl Jones (Dbn) placed third and fourth.

A record number of 150 entrants served as a positive reminder that the sport is once again rising in popularity. With 64 heats crammed over two days the contest officials were praised for the quick changeovers between heats and smooth running of the event. The Wimpy Rossi Pro-Am was the third event on the hotly contested 2004 SABA circuit and was hosted by the Southern KZN Bodyboarding Association.

2004 Wimpy/ Rossi Pro-Am Final Results:

(SKZN – Southern KZN)

Pro Final

1. Craig Maree (Dbn)
2. Wesley Fischer (Dbn)
3. Derek Footit (Margate)
4. Vaughn Harris (Southern Cape)

Women’s Final:

1. Robyn Sorenson (Dbn)
2. Inge Pieters (Margate)
3. Olivia Donald (Dbn)
4. Kara Wickens (Amanzimtoti)
5. Catey Mellish (CT)

Drop Knee Final

1. Darren Halse (Amanzimtoti)
2. Craig Maree (Dbn)
3. Simon Hagen (CT)
4. Sasha Taljaard (Dbn)

Master’s Final

1. Mike van Huyssteen (Former Durbanite now living in Gauteng)

Men’s Final

1. Wayne Beekman (Margate)
2. Steve Benson (Dbn)
3. Martin Otto (Margate)
4. Andre Marais (Zululand)

Junior’s Final (U18)

1. Marc Watts (Dbn)
2. Grant Lee (SKZN)
3. Wayne Smith (SKZN)
4. Rheinhard du Toit (Zululand)

Boy’s Final (U15)

1. Emile von Vollenhoven (SKZN)
2. Adam Morley (Southern Cape)
3. Justin Zietsman (SKZN)
4. Neil Steenkamp (Zululand)

Boy’s Final (U12)

1. Terence Pieters (Margate)
2. Dune Barker (SKZN)
3. Bradley Moys (Dbn)
4. Johnno Mellish (CT)

Girl’s Final (U16)

1. Lize-Mari Ras (Zululand)
2. Jocelyn Norton (Margate)

Development

1. Paul Mitchell (Dbn)
2. Jacques de Beer (Dbn)
3. Wiseman Simonsen (Margate)
4. Carl Jones (Dbn)

Best Judge

1. Vaughn Harris (SC)
2. Candice Menton (SC)
3. Sasha Taljaard (Dbn)

Best Move: Derek Footit (Margate)

Issued on behalf of:
South African Bodyboarding Association (SABA)

Southern Kwa-Zulu Natal Bodyboarding Contact:
Wayne Beekman (Chairman)
082 822 1825
Email: [email protected]

Issued by:
Olivia Jones Media Communications

082 537 8840
Email: [email protected]

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