The National- Friday, January 28, 2011
THE Surf Association of PNG has announced its 2011 National Surf Championship will be on March 19-26 at the newly established Tupira Surf Club in Ulingan, Madang.
SAPNG president Andrew Abel said at a press conference yesterday that this was the second surfing event since 2007 at Vanimo, West Sepik.
He said the national titles this year would set the selection process for three athletes to represent PNG in the Pacific Games in New Caledonia later in the year.
Abel explained that the delay in the championships was due to the development of facilities and infrastructure needed to accommodate all competing surfers and their entourage.
Tupira Surf Club was chosen as the host of this event to give a challenge to surfers to try experience the right-handed waves unlike the usual left-handed waves elsewhere.
“The athletes will come from each of the nine clubs in the country to compete in heats and the surfer with the best aggregate winning,” Abel said.
“PNG has the potential to become a surfing destination in the world and right now, SAPNG is looking to develope the available facilities to meet international standards, yet give that distinct traditional PNG look.
“Tupira was chosen because it has consistent waves, though the conditions for the championships depend mostly on the weather.”
SAPNG has also trained Papua New Guineans to be surf judges.
Last July 22 locals graduated with level 1 certificates and are now working towards their level 2 and 3.
These judges can now judge regional surf events, with K25, 000 spent on the judges to improve their knowledge and skills.
A world renown surf judge will be head judge at the March event
SAPNG hopes to co-host the World Qualifying Series and World Long board Titles in Vanimo next year, where the world’s best surfers will come to PNG – a significant milestone for PNG coinciding with SAPNG’s 25th anniversary
Abel said SAPNG operates mostly on its own with limited sponsorship and support from business houses but said the sport’s profile would improve after the national titles.