URBNSURF, Tullamarine VIC (Monday 7th March 2022): Sunshine Coast surfers, Jahly Stokes and Tim Bain have been crowned Rip Curl GromSearch National Champions today at URBNSURF in Victoria.
The event is part of a worldwide series of events designed for grommets running in more than 10 countries, with over 3,000 competitors worldwide. For the second year in a row, the Australian National Final was run at URBNSURF in Melbourne.
Using an innovative new format across both sides of the venue, groms from across the country had the URBNSURF Lagoon to themselves and were all battling it out for the top honours in 6 divisions.
Utilizing her power, Jahly Stokes was dominant on the left side of the pool in the 16 & Under Girls division locking in a 9.33 single wave (out of a possible 10) to back up her 7.73 wave score on the right.
“I’m super happy to take the win here at URBNSURF,” said Stokes. “It’s a really great experience to come down to Victoria and surf at the National Final.”
“I’m doing a few Pro Junior Events and QS events this year so this is a great way to start the year.”
Stokes left the field needing excellent scoring rides to take the lead, with Charlotte Mulley (Gold Coast, QLD) in second on 15.87 points. Finishing in a close third was Willow Hardy (Margaret River, WA) on 15.37.
On the 16 & Under Boys side of the draw, it came down to the final set of the day with Tim Bain requiring an excellent scoring ride to take the lead over local Willis Droomer (Jan Juc, VIC).
Executing a series of big backhand turns, Bain came through with an 8.43 to secure him the win.
“Definitely felt the pressure on that last wave. I knew I needed a score so I tried to keep the nerves at bay and I’m just stoked I got it.”
“I’ve been doing the Rip Curl GromSearch events for a while now, so it’s great to finally get a win.”
“It’s epic to surf at URBNSURF, just knowing you are going to get a perfect wave every time is amazing. It really evens out the playing field and makes it really competitive.”
Finishing in second was Droomer who finished on a heat total of 16.60 points to Bain’s 17.20 points.
Third place was claimed by Ty Richardson (Gold Coast, QLD) on 15.37 points.
Other event champions included Isla Huppatz (Gold Coast, QLD) and Sol Grundling (Dee Why, NSW) in the 14 & Under Divisions and Eliza Richardson (Gold Coast, QLD) and Ocean Lancaster (Merewether, NSW) in the 12 & Under Divisions.
16 & Under Girls
1st Jahly Stokes – 17.06
2nd Charlotte Mulley – 15.87
3rd Willow Hardy – 15.37
4th Keira Buckpitt – 15.13
5th Zahlia Short – 15.03
6th Lilliana Bowrey – 12.60
16 & Under Boys
1st Tim Bain – 17.20
2nd Willis Droomer – 16.60
3rd Ty Richardson – 15.37
4th Eden Hasson – 15.07
5th Dane Henry – 14.67
6th Willem Watson – 14.23
14 & Under Girls
1st Isla Huppatz – 17.17
2nd Milla Brown – 16.56
3rd Jordy Halford – 14.37
4th Maia Tate – 13.93
5th Nat Fensom – 13.93
6th Grace Gosby – 13.83
14 & Under Boys
1st Sol Gruendling – 18.16
2nd Sammy Lowe – 16.63
3rd Mitchell Peterson – 15.80
4th Rico Haybittle – 15.27
5th Will Martin – 14.43
6th Maverick Wilson – 13.77
12 & Under Girls
1st Eliza Richardson – 15.43
2nd Lucy Darragh – 15.26
3rd Charli Hately – 15.10
4th Olive Hardy – 14.77
5th Lani Cairncross – 13.93
6th Pipi Taylor – 13.16
12 & Under Boys
1st Ocean Lancaster – 18.54
2nd Hunter Andersson – 18.04
3rd Caden Francis – 16.13
4th Jesse Fergusson – 15.64
5th Ben Zanatta – 14.36
6th Rene Galloway – 13.57
The series provides the opportunity for groms to surf with crew from around the country and developing their competitive game. As participants progress through to the finals they get the chance to test their skills against Australia’s best, providing valuable experience competing against elite level talent. The impressive list of previous GromSearch competitors that are currently on the WSL world tour is testament to the quality of the series.
Current WSL World Tour athletes that were GromSearch finalists include:
Tyler Wright*, Steph Gilmore*, Carissa Moore*, Sally Fitgibbons, Malia Manuel, Nikki Van Dijk, Tatiana Weston-Webb, Bronte McCaulay, Caroline Marks, Macy Callaghan, Brisa Hennessy, Isabella Nichols & Bethany Hamilton. (*Note: GromSearch competitors have won the last 13 WSL women’s World Titles).
Current Men’s WSL World Tour athletes that were GromSearch finalists include:
Gabriel Medina*, Owen Wright, Italo Ferreira*, Jordy Smith*, Kolohe Andino*, Filipe Toledo*, Kanoa Igarashi*, Wade Carmichael, Ryan Callinan, Leonardo Fioravanti, Connor O’Leary, Seth Moniz, Griffin Colapinto & Morgan Cibilic.
(*Note: the top 6 surfers of the final 2019 WSL World Tour rankings are all former GromSearch finalists).