The Welsh Team were 1st (for the second year running) at the Celtic International Watersports Festival which was held in Asturias, Spain.
Individual winners included Ian 'Cat' Thomson taking the Masters,Colin Bright winning the Longboard and Harry Cromwell the Under 14 division.
This year's Celtic will be held in Portugal in July and once again Wales will be sending a full team. Confirmed sponsors include McLays of Cardiff.
Welsh Surfing Federation Front Page
Billabong Welsh Nationals 2004 postponed due to poor conditions until 5th/6th June
This is the home page of the Welsh Surfing Federation - the National Governing Body of the sport in Wales. The WSF is affiliated to both the British and European Surfing Federations and is responsible for promoting the sport and organising National Championships and selecting teams to represent Wales at an international level.
"ELKO" CRUISES WITH THE 2001 SAS / QUIKSILVER SURF SHOW TOUR.
After last years hugely successful Surf Show Tour which culminated with the biggest ever demo in SAS’s history at the House of Commons, Quiksilver showed their commitment and loyalty to our water environment again this year; coming up with the budget for the 2001 SAS/Quiksilver Surf Show Tour. The seriously plush 12 birth double decker tour bus pulled out of St Agnes in May this year carrying not only the best of British Surfing -Gabe Davies, Lee Bartlett (and his newly wed top bodyboarder Lisa Cutts) Gareth Llewellyn, Rob Barber, Robin Davies, Sarah Whitely and Spencer Hargreaves-(joining the for the Irish leg of the tour) but also 2000 World Masters Champ and all round surfing legend Gary Elkerton.
With daily programmes at each destination consisting of press calls in the morning, followed by expression sessions, school talks, beach safety lessons, autograph signings and finishing the day with an evening fund raiser at the local pub or club, Natasha Mikail our Tour organiser was there to make sure that everything ran to the very tight schedules.
First stop for the team was Langland, Wales, highlighting the fact that although we’ve seen massive investment in sewage treatment - Welsh Water being the first to adopt a full treatment policy back in 1993, chemicals and toxics are still spewing into the water everyday causing a major threat to both the water user and environment. The surfers carried that same message up onto the North East coast to Saltburn in Yorkshire and then onto Tynemouth in Newcastle where toxic pollution has to be the worst in the country, with huge industrial sites situated a stones throw away from some of the best waves the North-East coast has to offer!
Then it was up to Edinburgh for a demo at Scottish Parliament where the surfers received front page news asking Scottish Government to re-elect a specific Environment Minister for Scotland. Standing outside the entrance to the historical Parliament buildings in the lashing rain, with the infamous 10 foot inflatable turd in tow, the team and I met shadow Environment Minister Bruce Crawford and Green Party MP Robin Harper and told the awaiting press that without a specific Environment Minister for Scotland there is serious doubt that many of their inadequate sewage discharges would be given the priority they need in order to bring them up to scratch in the next few years. Our message was heard loud and clear throughout the whole of Scotland after being interviewed by BBC Scotland’s Environment Correspondant, local radio and newspapers.
In the months leading up to the tour when we the recieved the phone call from "Elko" confirming a whisper that he’d like to join the SAS team on the bus, my first thoughts were "how am I going to harrass my ‘all time surfing hero’ to get up out of his bunk at 7.00 am and into a wet wetsuit for morning press calls?" OK, all very well and easy if you’ve got perfect weather and waves that resemble something he’s used to - like 10 foot Pipe - but it’s just a tad different when its pouring down with rain and the surf is 1 foot and resembling a boating lake!
Gary soon quashed my fears when we arrived at our first stop in Langland, Wales, being one of the first out of his bunk (after a couple tentative prods and a strong coffee from Natasha). "Shooting from the hip" as he put it, he told the local MP that he was stoked to see a big improvement in sewage treatment since he was there ten years ago but was disgusted at the fact that there were no warning signs to inform the public of potential pollution incidents and the fact that young surfers had to risk their health to enjoy themselves at their local break was totally unacceptable in this day and age!! He then joined the team for an expression session in the one foot conditions snagging a couple of ripples on Guts Griffiths’ long board wearing only a pair of boardies and sunglasses, leaving the rest of the crew feeling like blouses for wondering whether or not they should risk taking there boots off or not!!!! The man was definitely committed to the cause!! Gossips.
he finale of the week long tour - after saying goodbye to Gary Elko and Gabe Davies with a few well earned beers in Scotland - was to race back down the motorway to Luton and get the very weary crew on board a flight to Northern Ireland where we were running a surf contest and highlighting the fact that as they have such a beautiful stretch of coastline they should be doing all they can to help keep it clean.
We arrived at the airport where we were meant to be meeting Spencer Hargreaves, with the crew still fast asleep in their bunks, Natasha and I decided that if we didn’t get everyone’s stuff on the flight we were probably not going to make it. so, after an hour of frantically stuffing everyone’s stuff into any available bag we started to proceed to the check in desk - the crew still asleep and no sign of Spencer we started to get a bit panicky!! After waking the crew we finally got everything checked-in, Spencer was still missing and - with a plane full of people (including half our crew) waiting on the tarmac, he phoned to say that he was 2 minutes away. One look at the airport staff at the check-in desk confirmed our fears that he was too late to check in! Luckily the sour-faced woman behind the desk told us that he would probably be able to get the next flight over in a couple of hours!! Leaving Natasha and Guillaume Colas (the Tour sponsor from Quiksilver Initiative over for the final leg of the tour) to pick-up Spencer and then wait for Vicky - SAS’ Campaign Manager and her fiance Pev who were arriving on a later flight!!!
After finally meeting the others in Portrush that afternoon we decided it was time for a quick dip to test the waters, the surf being 2 feet but fun, our camera man - and all round legendary surf journo - Ester Spears managed to rattle off a couple of rolls of film, finding himself a great spot overlooking the waves. After all the drama of getting the crew over to the Emerald Isle we managed to run a really fun contest in the barely rideable conditions at White Rocks Beach and attract some attention from the media to Ireland’s pollution problems. Doing a live radio interview we flagged-up the fact that Ireland has some serious problems to address and that with only a quarter of their sewage outfalls having consents set for them it is impossible to regulate what is dumped into coastal waters.
All in all the 2001 SAS Quiksilver Surf Show Tour rocked through the country carrying it’s environmental message to an estimated 10 million people and proving that some of the worlds leading surf stars really do give a shit!!!