February 8th 2009 / by Durian
Clear skies, light wind, and grinding three-foot waves welcomed stoked grommets to Keramas beach today for the first stop of the three-stage Rusty Gromfest Series 2009. With a heatdraw bursting at the seams organizers were eager to start proceedings so they sent the first heat into the lineup at 7:30am. Spurred on by friends and family, kids waxed their boards furiously, itching to get their rails wet.
In the under 14 division Koko Mitsua Antara, Ediana Putra, Angus Steeles and Hayden Welch surfed impressively but it was Legian’s Blacky who became the crowd favorite after unleashing numerous grab-rail carves and landing a massive air. Angus and Hayden met in the first round and were unstoppable as they surfed their way into the finals together. There was heaps of little dudes ripping big-time so it’d be safe to say the future of Indonesian surfing is in good hands!
The first round of the under 16 division saw two familiar surfers light it up- Agus Frimanto and Putra Hermawan – no strangers to junior competition in Bali. Frimanto’s opening ride sent the beach into a frenzy of high-fives as he boosted over a section then broke into a series of cutbacks followed by a 360 reverse on the inside wedge. Other standouts were Putu Anggara and Tia Nustawan who were both going nuts on their backside.
Guest judge and Rusty Indonesia GM Kane Faint commented, “The standard of surfing today has been amazing. The groms are taking full advantage of the empty lineup and epic conditions. They’re amped and it’s showing in their surfing!”
In the Under 14 final it was an international affair with two Australian’s paired against two local boys. Angus caught waves like a machine but couldn’t put two high scores in the bag. Blacky ran out of juice after competing in both divisions while Ediana hacked and slashed his way into second place. Hayden’s polished style and flowing top-turns won the judges over as he was awarded the top spot.
“I’m really stoked to win this event – everyone was ripping. I made heaps of new friends. I wish I could stay for the next contest but my holiday is over and I have to go back to school!” chuckled Hayden after the presentation.
As the horn blew to signal the start of the under 16 final, a set rolled through with Putu Anggara, Putra Hermawan, and Agus Frimanto exchanging blows consecutively. Putra squeaked out of a feathering barrel and backed it up with a flawless display of tight, precise, critical surfing. Agus was also on fire and saved the best for last- he stomped a 360 air under pressure over the inside reef. Putu couldn’t quite claw his way into contention despite finding a small tube of his own.
In the end Putra took top honors and was crowned the Rusty Gromfest Keramas Champ! Agus finished a close second and also received the ‘Sabre Madness Award’ for pulling some mental airs which raised the bar and left the crowd frothing! This duo have started their 2009 campaign with great results and I’m sure this won’t be the last time they battle it out for the top spot.
See you at Pererenan Canggu on Sunday March 8th for the second stop of the Rusty Gromfest Series 2009.
1. Hayden Welch
2. Ediana Putra
3. Angus Steeles
1. Putra Hermawan
2. Agus Frimanto
3. Putu Anggara
4. Kadek Mertayasa
The overall U/16 winner will be awarded a chance to compete against the best international junior surfers at the 13th annual Rusty Gromfest held at Lennox Head, Australia in July 2009. This event has enjoyed a rich history that has seen the likes of Mick Fanning, Bede Durbidge, and Julian Wilson crowned as champions. The overall U/16 champion will also be granted wildcard entry into the 6-star ISC Rusty Rumble In Da Jungle event at Sanur in May 2009.
Thanks to Creatures, Sabre, Macbeth, Surftime, and Magic Wave for supporting the series.