OCEAN CITY – The 9th Annual K-Coast/Reef Surf Challenge drew 105 of the top surfing competitors from Florida through New York to compete for a trip to Barbados and more than $10,000 in prizes at 35th Street in Ocean City last Sunday.
A solid chest to head-high north swell with light sideshore winds created excellent conditions for the athletes to put on a great show.
Lucas Rogers of Virginia Beach, Va. blew away the competition and took home more than $1,000 in prizes including a trip to Barbados and an entry to compete in the Reef Bowl Surf Invitational.
Rogers’ powerful surfing and huge aerial maneuvers in the Open Shortboard final made him the clear winner in a completely stacked final. Toby Smith of West Babylon, N.Y. also out-surfed his competition in the Open Longboard division by pulling off a huge lip bashing 360 in the final. The Grom division (14 and under) saw a much closer race for the title with Julian Payne of Kitty Hawk, N.C. just edging out Sean Santiago of Wildwood Crest, N.J. Kate Easton of Virginia Beach, Va. also had a close final with Rachel Harrell of Ocean View, Del., but Easton managed to pull off some stronger moves to win the huge first place prize package.
Six of the top competitors performed a tow-at-air show demo for the spectators. Surfers were towed, by jet ski, into the chest to head-high waves to blast gigantic aerial maneuvers. Matt Keenan of Ocean City, N.J. and Rogers boosted the highest airs, but Raven Lundy of Virginia Beach, Va. took top honors in the demo by actually landing the biggest aerial.
K-Coast Surf Shops in Ocean City, Maryland along with the Eastern Surfing Association created this event nine years ago as an annual fundraiser for the Ocean City Career Firefighters and Paramedics Association. This year’s event raised approximately $2,000. Other event sponsors were Xcel Wetsuits, Smith Optics, Freestyle, Dakine, Barrett Chevrolet, 7S Surfboards, 6 Star Surfboards, Webber, Red Sun Custom Apparel, Modern Longboards, Studio S Jewelry, 93.5 the Beach, Global Surf Industries and Belly Busters.
The next event for the Delmarva District of the Eastern Surfing Association is the Ho-Ho Surf Off on Dec. 8 in Delaware at North Side Indian River Inlet or Tower Road State Park.
The results from last weekend’s event are listed below in order of finish.
Open Shortboard (all ages): Lucas Rogers of Virginia Beach, Va., Raven Lundy of Virginia Beach, Va., Michael Dunphy of Virginia Beach, Va., Matt Keenan of Ocean City, N.J., Slater Powell of Topsail Island, N.C. and Drex Harrington of Ocean City.
Open Longboard (all ages): Toby Smith of West Babylon, N.Y., Colin Herlihy of Frankford, Del., Art Baltrotsky of Berlin, Jake Buchler of Fenwick Island, Chris Vaxmonsky of Berlin and Spencer Ashton of Berlin.
Grom (boys/girls 14 & under): Julian Payne of Kitty Hawk, N.C., Sean Santiago of Wildwood Crest, N.J., Caleb Buchler of Fenwick Island, Del., Brady Dashiell of Salisbury, Rachel Harrell of Ocean View, Del. and Austin Deppe of Bishopville, Md.
Girls (all ages): Kate Easton of Virginia Beach, Va., Rachel Harrell of Ocean View, Del., Kaitlyn Curran of Berlin, Laurel Harrington of Berlin, Kelcey Bodolus of Berlin and Mindy Logan of Rehoboth Beach.
Tow-At-Air Show: Raven Lundy of Virginia Beach, Va., Matt Keenan of Ocean City, N.J. and Lucas Rogers of Virginia Beach, Va.