March 7, 2008 : – – The Roxy Invitational Mozambique presented by Saltwater Girl Magazine is an invite-only surfing event that takes place at Ponto Do Oro in Mozambique. It has an 8-day waiting period to make sure that the girls get to surf the best waves, and the first prize is $10,000.
The first round of the event was run off earlier on in the week, with the contest organizers deciding to hold off the semi finals and final for a day or two, until the surf was optimum. The decision to hold off was a wise one.
The perfect right-hand wave at Ponto Do Oro in Southern Mozambique revealed clean three to four-foot surf, with a light offshore wind blowing. These elements, combined with a pushing tide, made for some great waves running for up to an exceptionally long 200-metres down the point. The contest organizers didn’t wait for long before sending out the finalists in the Roxy Invitational Mozambique Presented By Saltwater Girl Magazine.
It was the battle of the goofy-footers, with all four of the finalists in the Roxy Invitational being right-foot forward surfers, and thus all four of them surfing with their backs to the waves. The finalists were Bianca Buitendag from Victoria Bay, Sarah Baum from Warner Beach, Heather Clarke from Port Shepstone and Chantelle Rautenbach representing for Melkbosstrand.
From the start of the 45-minute final it was clear that it was going to be a battle between Heather Clarke’s experience and power surfing against the aggressive and radical approach of the trio of youngsters. Heather snagged an excellent wave right off the starting siren and performed radical turns all the way down the beach.
Not to be outdone, Chantelle and Sarah responded with high-scoring moves on their first rides as well. Bianca was also on form, but failed to find any of the good waves that the other girls were getting.
With an unlimited wave count and jetski assist, the girls were exhausted by the end of the 45-minute final, with all four girls riding over 10 waves each and each wave being over 200-metres long. As Roxy Marketing Manager Candice Mac Nicol, who was on-site at the event, said about the surfing, “The slogan for the event is ‘real waves, real surfers, real surfing’ and that’s exactly what we’ve seen.”
Despite a spirited attack from both Chantelle and Sarah, the latter who really must be commended for her aggressive surfing and never say die approach (her 13th ride as an 8.5 and one of her counting rides) it was Heather Clarke who surfed her way into the history books and into the $10,000 first prize check.
The surf was undoubtedly the best ever for a women’s surf contest in Africa. Sarah Baum picked up the $3,000 check and Chantelle Rautenbach got the third prize of $2,000. For video clips, downloads, images and surfer profiles go to the Saltwater Girl Magazine website and check out the event link.
1. Heather Clark 19
2. Sarah Baum 16.5
3. Chantelle Rautenbach 15
4. Bianca Buitendag 13.5
1. Heather Clark 16.5
2. Chantelle Rautenbach 14.5
3. Sarah Maritz 12.7
4. Nicole Annels 8.5
1. Sarah Baum 14
2. Bianca Buitendag 13.5
3. Kirsty Delport 13.3
4. Alice McGregor 13
About Saltwater Girl
Saltwater GIRL is a refreshing alternative to mainstream media offerings, targeting the independent free-thinking teenage girl who strives to be anything but ordinary. With strong roots in surf and beach culture, SWG is right at home in the Mozambican sand with some of SA’s top female surfers for a week of fun, sun, surf and mischief.