Adaptive Surfing Open

Adaptive Surfing Open

Surfing England is so amped to announce we are returning to The Wave, Bristol, for the 2021 English Adaptive Surfing Open, to be held on Thursday 8th July. After showcasing the venue’s potential at the 2020 korev lager English Adaptive Surfing Open, we cannot wait to return for an even bigger event, as we welcome adaptive surfers from across the globe through the doors.

The Wave is the official high performance training centre for Team England, and the Adaptive crew are often found shredding on the lake’s glassy waves. The Wave have also been instrumental in developing adaptive surfing in England, supporting Surfing England for the last 4 years to establish a contest which is now highly respected at a global level.

The core contest heats of the 2021 English Adaptive Surfing Open will take place on the Advanced setting at The Wave, and surfers will be scored on their rides on both the left and right side of the lake. Competition will take place between 9am and 7pm, with presentations to follow and a relaxed social gathering to end the day.

New to 2021, we are hugely excited to introduce a new Participation Session. This is where we welcome adaptive surfers who are above beginner level, but may not yet be confident enough to compete, to come along, surf and experience the day at the event and become familiar with the workings of surf competitions. This will take place on The Wave’s Waikiki setting – a gentle, spilling green wave. Volunteers will be on hand to support with water safety. This is a fantastic opportunity to start learning to ride green waves and also check out the contest and inspire the future of adaptive surfers. This session will take place 12-1pm on Thursday 8th July.
For full Event Information, please visit the Surfing England website here:

Fabrizio Passetti, Italian adaptive surfer.

Fabrizio Passetti, Italian adaptive surfer.

Fabrizio Passetti began surfing when he was 13, shortly after moving to Varazze, one of the best surf spots in Italy. A motorbike accident a few months before National Championships years later in Italy would change his world forever. The day of his 18th birthday, on September 9, he was told his leg had to be amputated. Years in hospital ensued, infections, painful rehabilitation. For a year and a half he couldn’t even wear a prosthetic limb, but the most painful part was that he couldn’t get back in the sea.

Finally, in Switzerland, thanks to a great professor, Sebastiano Martinoli, the infection healed. They managed to thoroughly clean the bone and treated him with sea water. Thanks to Martinoli, the part of joint he had left was intact (his amputation ends in the middle of the kneecap, which allows him only about 60% of movement). He started walking again, rather well, and a normal life resumed. I travelled and started a rewarding career as chef, working in Italy, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia and Thailand.

In the meantime, one way or the other, I was trying to get back at sea with any kind of device: He practiced bodyboarding, using a resin prosthetic leg with a fixed foot which allowed no movement, and which he would lose every time I was at sea. The bigger the waves and harder the conditions, the more stubborn he became, but sometimes the frustration was unbearable.

You can see by the edit of Fabrizio at Padang Padang, he’s well on his way. Nothing is impossible, we salute you Fabrizio, long may you pull in.

Edit: Federico Vanno

England’s first ever Adaptive Surfing Open

England’s first ever Adaptive Surfing Open took place on Saturday the 16th September in the stormy seas of Watergate Bay in Cornwall. As 18 adaptive surfers from the UK, USA, Italy & France competed across five divisions to take the inaugural titles.

The event, which was the first of its kind here in England, follows a global push to celebrate and provide for adaptive surfing. An integral and developing part of the sport for surfers with a variety of disabilities, and an area lead by the the world governing body, the international surfing association.

The surfers competed in divisions based on their functional surfing ability; Prone Division, Sitting/kneeling Division, Assisted Division, Open Division & Standing Division. The conditions were less than ideal with autumnal low pressures kicking the sea into motion and heavy rain, but nothing would dampen the spirits of the surfers as they enjoyed a day of rivalry and socialising. As contest organisers seeked to learn for the development of additive surfing, as well as identifying potential Team England athletes for the upcoming World Adaptive Surfing Games in California.

“Today was a momentous day that’s been a long time coming, surfing as a sport holds many possibilities but seeing the impact of today’s event is reminder that it’s more than just a sport. We hope that people across England take inspiration from what’s been achieved here today, we certainly have and are committed to ensuring this event is a firm fixture on our annual national events schedule” said event manager Nick Rees.

Surfing England have worked in collaboration with partners Surfability UK, The Wave Project, Help for Heroes, Operation Surf, The Endeavour fund & The Wave to put the event on and ensure a positive experience was had by all. As well as sponsors Caravan & motorhome club, Korev Lager, Dryrobe, GoPro, Pacsafe, Stance, Jeep & Surfdome.#

1 Benoit Moreau
2 Pegleg Bennet
3 Michael Taylor
4 Charlotte Weston
5 Louis Sutton
5 October Hamlyn-Wright
7 Laurent Marouf
7 Fabio Secci

1 Martin Pollock
2 Ethan Jolosa

1 Bruno Hanson
2 Spike Kane


1 Sponge Williams
2 Jake Green
3 Martin Pollock
4 Spike Kane

1 Benoit Moreau
2 Yannis Karakousis
3 Jeremy Waite
4 Laurent Marouf
5 Gemma Gibs

English Adaptive Surfing Open, Watergate Bay

Surfing England, its partners and sponsors are bringing the first ever English Adaptive Surfing Open, an event for surfers with a variety of disabilities to be held at Watergate Bay in Cornwall on Saturday 16th September 2017.

This inaugural event signifies the development of England’s adaptive surfing programme in line with the global momentum push for Adaptive Surfing and in preparation for the World Adaptive Surfing Games this autumn.

The event will see adaptive surfers united in a common love for surfing, and with the goal of taking the titles, whilst having fun and competing against their peers, in divisions identified by their surfing functional ability; Assisted; Prone; Sitting/Kneeling; Standing & Open.

Surfing England aim to raise the profile and opportunity for adaptive surfing and build off the important work already in place from event partners in Help for Heroes, The Endeavour Fund, Operation Surf, The Waveproject, Surfability UK and The Wave.

Surfing England see Adaptive Surfing as an integral part of the English Surfing community and area that they want to celebrate and grow – as their first Adaptive event they hope to learn and provide a day of inclusivity, rivalry and enjoyment.

The criteria for surfers to participate can be seen here: CLASSIFICATION CRITERIA

If a surfer has any query over eligibility to participate please contact: Nick Rees, event manager – please detail your case for entry and this will be reviewed by the entry committee: [email protected]

To enter the event at Watergate bay (below) please click here and purchase ‘tickets’ to your chosen division. All spectators’ welcomed, free entry and no tickets required.

Photo: James Wilkinson