An entry for the history books – it’s been a phenomenal weekend at The Wave in Bristol, delivering the biggest surf event at the venue since the doors opened late 2019. We firmly pushed the boundaries of our knowledge, having developed a new format for the event which ran seamlessly, and overall delivered a surf contest that everyone involved in should be immensely proud of. A firm showcasing of why Surfing England are at the forefront of the surf industry and development of the sport in England.
This was the 2023 korev lager English Interclub Surfing Championships, where we welcomed 9 clubs and 130 surfers from across the country to Bristol, to compete and celebrate the surf club community. We had new clubs joining us to compete at this event and we were off the charts stoked. Running at The Wave offered up guaranteed waves and a fantastic amphitheatre venue to watch the action, and for everyone turning up for a regular surf lesson, what an inspiring weekend to have landed on.
The sunshine that aligned was an added bonus – illuminating the turquoise waters, as the waves rolled through the lake. It couldn’t have gotten any better for an Autumnal weekend. On Saturday morning everyone came together for check in and briefings, and you could feel the nerves radiating and excitement building. Rapidly brought up to speed by our expert team, everyone was stoked to know they were getting their fix of advanced waves.
The moment everyone had been waiting for – the korev lager keg crowning championships, supported by dryrobe. This was a separate event to the main contest, and was a battle of the barrels, which 40% of surfers got the opportunity to compete in. It was down to the teams to nominate their surfers for this round, which wrapped the end of each day. Surfers had to surf forehand and backhand barrels to end the event crowned champion open and woman barrel rider.
Charging through the heats on Saturday, all surfers had a warm-up set, then were scored on rotation, and given the opportunity to free surf as many waves as we could offer up. In the water, the teams were closely watching the fellow clubs in the lake to see what maneuverers they were pulling off and knowing what they had to do to get the points on the board.
In spare time between surfing, the skate ramp was in constant use, and surf skates were whipping around the smooth shoreline, the surfers and Wave staff clearly getting a little competitive with one another! Saturday afternoon was also soundtracked with a line-up of musicians and DJs to set the vibe into the evening – thanks to The Wave for organising this.
At the end of day one, everyone was glued to the pier to watch the barrels eating up the bay. Back-to-back the surfers got the chance to try and get pitted. There were some snarls, some slams, and some serious cover ups. The crowd were elated, and this set the tone for the rest of the contest.
Sunday morning, the mist hugged the lake as the sun rose on a glorious day. The women took to the water first and charged hard, having known their placings from the end of day 1 and the underdogs keen to storm into the lead. The surfing continued with the open surfers taking to the water, and once again the placings were tight, and everyone knew there was no time for errors if they wanted to come out with champion placings.
Completing Sunday, 1-2pm the korev lager kegs event continued. The surfers all knew their points from day one, and now it was a focused session on their backhand or forehand depending which side of the lake they got pitted on day one. This aspect of the contest was to showcase the high-performance side of club surfing and the best all round barrel riders. When it came to crunch it was the Betteridge brother and sister duo who came out on top; our huge congratulations to Belle (Women’s Crowning) and Beau Betteridge (Open crowning).
When the event drew to close, St Agnes Surf Lifesaving Club women came out as Champions, based on overall day one and two combined. In the Open, Croyde Surf Club held onto their lead, taking home Champion status.
The overall club leaderboard had been under wraps throughout, setting the tone for a tense presentation, every ear hooked on Martin Reay’s recap of the event. The points were in, the scores were nerve-rackingly close, but just nudging it to claim 2023 Interclub Champions was Croyde Surf Club, who were off the charts stoked – congratulations!
1 Croyde Surf Club
1 St. Agnes Surf Lifesaving Club
1 Croyde Surf Club
Korev Lager keg crowning OPEN surfer, supported by dryrobe
1 Beau Betteridge
Korev Lager keg crowning WOMEN surfer, supported by dryrobe
1 Belle Betteridge
Thank you to our fantastic headline partners korev lager and to all our brilliant partners Caravan and Motorhome Club and to our amazing partners Caravan and Motorhome Club, The Wave, dryrobe, Muscle Food, Decathlon UK, Clarke Willmott, Vospers