Annual retro surf competition

Josh Johnson-Baxter. 149589

Compiled by Gary Stephens

THE 13th Beach Boardriders Annual Retro competition was in full swing after its Australia Day event rocked along to Triple J’s hottest 100.
Boards from Klemm-Bell, Kim Thompson, Doug Rogers, Pat Morgan, the Trigger Brothers, and Bob Cooper from the 1960s and 1970s were there in use.
Unfortunately the surf did not co-operate – with two foot onshore waves – and many of the crew were finding it difficult to ride the classic boards.
Last year’s winner Josh Johnson-Baxter was a surprise exit from the first heat taken out by the eventual winner Henry Hutchins who had been practicing on his dad’s old boards.
There were other stand outs, Mac Taylor handled the conditions well and made it to the final.
Groms Ellie Harrison and Charlie Mahoney ripped as well.
Will Bowers took out the milk and pie challenge to get automatic entry into the final.
Results: 1st Henry Hutchins; 2nd Gus Harfield; 3rd Danny Dales Sutton; 4th Grant Stringer; 5th Mac Taylor; 6th Will Bowers; 7th Charlie Mahoney.
In other news, Josh Johnson-Baxter took out round one of the Victorian State Round Open Division in January.
Held in unruly conditions at Gunnamatta, Johnson-Baxter managed to edge out his fellow competitors by only a fraction of a point.
While Johnson-Baxter has been competing in the Open Division for many years and finished second numerous times, this is his first win in the top division in the state.
His win enables him to bypass the pre-trials section in this year’s Rip Curl Bells Beach Pro.
He made it through the pre-trials a number of times, with his best result a second in the trials.
This might be the year Johnson-Baxter realises a life-long goal and makes it into the main event.
He will miss the next state round at Phillip Island due to a surfing trip to Hawaii.