Australia’s first wave pool comp goes down at Urbnsurf
Surfing Victoria and Urbnsurf made history last night with the first-ever wave pool event ran in Australia – the 2020 Melbourne Pool Party presented by Urbnsurf.
Bringing together over 60 of Victoria’s best surfers, the event was held at the newly opened Urbnsurf Wave Park and showcased the depth of Victorian surfing with divisions in Shortboard, Longboard and Bodyboard.
Due to the emerging issues around COVID-19, the event was unfortunately held with no spectators and essential staff and competitors only.
Exhibiting an innovative format that mimics a snowboard style leaderboard, surfers were given multiple rides on each side of the pool in a test of overall surfing ability.
Coming down to the final 2 waves of the men’s final, the Surf Coast’s Tully Wylie and Xavier Huxtable were in a duel to become the first-ever wave pool event champions.
Needing a 5.40 on his final wave, all the pressure was on Wylie to get the score and leapfrog Huxtable into the lead. With a big turn followed by a short barrel and finishing maneuver, Wylie was able to claim a 6.17 and the lead.
Huxtable had one more wave to better his previous ride (an 8.97) however fell short.
“That was so nerve-wracking,” said a jubilant Wylie. “That’s what is so good about this format though. It puts pressure on you to perform and its super exciting to watch as a spectator. I’m just stoked to get a win and have a day of surfing perfect waves at Urbnsurf.”
Other finalists in the Mens division included Harry Mann (Torquay), Joe van Dijk (Phillip Island), Codie Jeffery (Phillip Island) and Todd Rosewall (Jan Juc).
Fellow Surf Coaster India Robinson was the stand out performer in the Women’s division. After returning the night before from competing on the World Qualifying Series, Robinson was in electric form and showed why she is one to watch in 2020.
Making her return from retirement, Georgia Fish (Flinders) showed that she can still match it with the best finishing in 2nd place behind Robinson.
However, it was Robinson in the end that threw down some of the biggest turns of the event on the right-hander.
“This was such a sick event. It was amazing to be a part of” said Robinson.
“The waves are so fun at Urbnsurf, everything from turns to tubes. I’m looking forward to competing here again!”
Laurie Hamshere and Isla Huppatz took home biggest maneuvers in the Expression Session and saw them claim a voucher for an hour session at Urbnsurf.
Full results can be found on www.surfingvic.com