Posts Tagged ‘Woolacombe’

Al Reed gains 3rd at Woolacombe

Apologies to Al for the lateness of this article. April saw the first in the series of the British Longboard events held in very tricky conditions down at Marine Drive, Woolacombe. With howling onshore winds and rain the contest started with 2-3ft waves but as the wind got stronger the waves gor really messed up. On the Sunday the wind dropped a little cleaning the waves up a bit. I spoke to Al after the evnt and he said ‘it was well windy but pretty fun. I won all my quater and semi heats but when it came to the final I just couldn’t find the waves, only got two in the whole heat and it wasn’t enough for a win this time. I’m gonna get into some training I think as that Matt Thomas is a gurt triathelete and I’m gonna need to be as fit as possible to beat him! Got some 8 point scores for the big roundhouse cutback in the photo sequence. that was in the earlier round though, could have done with it in the final.’


2011 British Interclub Championships

The Isle of Wight Surf Club team headed down to Woolacombe last weekend for the 2011 British Interclub Championships. Matt Harwood had put together a strong team with Doug Richards, Josh Jupe, Chris Mannion, Mark New and Craig Sharp joining him. This years event was being scored differently to previous years with only one day to fit everything in and there was only one heat for each team member. During free surfing the boys looked good, but during the heats they couldn’t seem to find the high scoring waves. Local knowledge paid off for the teams from Devon coming out on top. With the Island scoring 2nd’s, 3rd’s and 4th’s in their heats it wasn’t enough for a podium this year. In the Masters category the old timers in the team faired better, Craig and Chris showing that experience was the key coming 2nd overall.


2011 British Longboard Club Championships

Saturday 5th November at Saunton Sands, North Devon finally saw the 2011 British Longboard Club Championships take place. Alan Reed recently crowned British Masters Longboard Champion was there as part of the Masters team for the Hotdoggers Surf Club from Saunton North Devon. Al has been a member of the Hotdoggers club for over 10 years (Sadly the Island has yet to put a Longboard team together).

Each team member had to surf in a 25 minute heat with 12 teams competing from Scarborough , RN/RM , Bristol , Shore Surf Club, and the Hotdoggers. Al was up in the second heat and took 1st place in his heat helping the Masters team to 2nd place overall.

Sponsers of the event were; Second Skin, O`Neil, Cordural Lines, Dudleys , VW , BLU, Blacker Surfboards , Thatch , Errant Surf Travel. Indo Boards , Animal , North Core And Monster.

The Trophy presentation was at Cook Island, this was also the Hotdoggers End of Season Bash, 6.00pm til Midnight; a Carvery for only £6.50, a free bus from Barnstaple with pickups enroute returning at midnight, trophy presentations, raffle and DJ. Cook Island was just up the road from where I was staying so I dropped by for a quick pint and it looked like the Hotdoggers know how to through and end of season do.


Peter Smith

I met Sid when my dad and I were lodging at Dimbola above Freshwater Bay during the winter of 1973 when I started lower 6th at Carisbrooke and my dad was head of the catering dept at the Isle Of Wight Technical College. Dad and I used to walk down to swim at the bay, and one day there was a decent swell and one guy out there all by himself. Got chatting to him, and he told me all about the surf spots on the island and the surf club…

We moved to Newport after a while (during that winter I think) and from there I used to catch rides with Rog Cooper, Brian “the screw” Hill, Tony Macpherson. I used to walk down to Tony’s house on Pan Estate before light with my “fare” – a pack of biccies to share, then we’d go in one of their cars by rotation. I was by far the youngest (and only “young”) surfer on the island at that time.

During my upper 6th year Steve Chase arrived from Portsmouth, and was working at the garage at the bottom of the hill below Carisbrooke High School, so I’d get lifts with him also (often not getting back to school if the waves were good, hence only getting 2 A levels instead of 3…). I also got the use of my parents’ 1960 Morris 1000 traveller when I learnt to drive, so could get out more by myself when I had money for petrol.

Dave “turf” Salero was very active then too – I think he’d won the IOW championship the year I arrived (at about 40 years old after only surfing a couple of years).

The Club house was not even close to the edge of the cliff at Compton, movie nights by Pete Brown and Annie (now married to Tony Mac I believe)… lots of great times.
“Postman” Tad with his stories of Peniche in Portugal, the other guy I forget the name of who’d moved away, but came back for a while and lived in a converted hearse or London taxi cab… the connection with Genevieve Berrouet in Guethary where I ended up spending 7 months in 1976 and again in 77…

And I remember those special days when we’d come over the hill and see lines stretching out to the horizon, and we’d flash by Compton to FB… and those VERY special days when it was working. One day Steve’s dog got so excited at our hollering he peed himself all over me on the front seat!

There’s an old movie of Annie’s that has some FB in it, don’t know if it’s still around anywhere.

Haha… this was going to be just a word to say I’d be happy to give you some info – now you have some!!

Have been talking to Sid Pitman about a trip Pete and Dave Salero did to Woolacombe meeting up with Roger Cooper. Sid remembers Pete cooking an omelette for everyone which was a complete mess while in the camper next door Roger Cooper had managed to cook a full roast dinner followed by trifle which he fiunished off all by himself.


Tiki National Interclub 2010 Surfing Championships

The Isle of Wight Surf Club Team came so close to getting on the podium and a 3rd place at this years Tiki National Interclub Surfing Championships. The gap between themselves and Croyde Surf Club – A Team was only 3 points.

Saturday started with some very challenging conditions and at least a couple of contestants didn’t even make it out to the line up. Even when you made it to the line up it looked difficult to to be in the right place when the sets came through.

As the day went on the swell cleaned up and we were treated to some great surfing. The Island Team finished the day in 4th place with James and Johnny both winning their heats.

On the Sunday the boys had all drawn the Island on their boards, very proud to be representing the Isle of Wight. Later some of them even had the names of Island breaks and their postcode on their boards.

The day started much smaller than the Saturday. Doug was first up again and got two waves scores early on.

There started to be a bit of a wait between the larger sets and you could see the frustration on faces as contestants looked for the best waves.

As Johnny paddled out a nice set came through just before they blew the horn then it seeemd to go flat for about 10 mins. I even started photographing Rock Pipits and a Cormorant, at which point I realised that if I had time to photograph wildlife during Johnny’s heat then he must be so frustrated. A few waves came through towards the end of the heat and he ripped them all the way to the beach. Typically just after the horn went a great set came through and you could see the frustration all the competitors faces in that heat.

It finished a very close thing between Croyde A Team and the Isle of Wight and after the event the conversations were all about how they lost the 3 points or how they could have gained those three points if only….. until someone said ‘so where are we going to surf now’ and it all changed to the where the next surf destination was to be. It was agreed on Sandymouth and within minutes cars were packed and they were on their way.


‘Surf Trips & France’ by Pat Morrell

This is 1971 and Hutch and I are coming off Barricane beach in Woolacombe. By this time we were both living in England and found it more convenient to leave our wives together (after a year or two with children) in Hutch’s house in Southsea, and to go down to the west country for a weekend rather than to come to the Island. Woolacombe was much closer than Newquay so we would leave at around 6:00 or 6:30 on a Saturday morning, reckoning to be in the water by 10:00 and then return late Sunday afternoon. I’m carrying the board that the customs confiscated.

In 1972 we went back to Biarritz where there was quite a gang from the Island I remember the Isle of Wight contingent sitting on the sea wall outside the surf club at Cotes des Basques, Biarritz watching the then world champion (Corky Carroll).
From left (ignoring the little girls) is me, Rory Angus, an Australian chap that we hooked up with, Bob Ward (I think, he was certainly around), Trev, his girlfriend, an English bloke called Alan that was with the Aussie, and their two girlfriends one who was English the other Australian.

The “IW” campsite. Hutch in the middle, Rory on his right andTrev + girlfriend in the background.

Rory at Chambre d’Amour. The waves were very small but he insisted it was worth going in, we gave him flack about surfing on wet sand.

Hutch on the left, unknown on the right. This is on the sandy beach between Bidart and Guethary

Hutch at our campsite.

Chambre d’Amour. Trev’s girl, Trev and Rory with Hutch in the car. Hutch and I were a bit better organised that the rest of them and did most of the shopping. Each day we would go into the little supermarket in Guethary and buy a platter of peaches, about 4 baguettes, two cheeses and 7 or 8 litres of beer. The girls there thought it was only for us so we achieved a little notoriety for our diet, but it was really for the other guys as well.
Tony Macpherson may remember it as the year he spent a night in a French gaol! He was camping in his van on the beach at Bidart and I asked him to try to sell a board for me. Despite my suggestion that he didn’t advertise it, he put an “A Vendre” notice on the board. The police hauled him off for not paying import tax or something. The options were to pay a fine or forfeit the board, he chose the latter and I lost my board! Tony didn’t offer to recompense me.