Waves ‘turn up’ for Small Fries

Jackson Lavell-LeeBusselton Dunsborough Times
Max McGillvray was crowned the micro groms champion
Camera IconMax McGillvray was crowned the micro groms champion Credit: Pictures: Rafael Maia, Rafael Maia

WA’s biggest junior surfing event, Taj’s Small Fries, sponsored by Flight Centre and the City of Busselton, ended on Sunday with seven new champions named at Smiths Beach.

Jed Gradisen (16-and-under boys), Coral Durant (16-and-under girls), Lennix Smith (14-and-under boys), Willow Hardy (14-and-under girls), Maverick Wilson (12-and-under boys), Isi Campbell (12-and-under girls) and Max McGillvray (10-and-under micro groms) were crowned victorious.

Gracetown duo Jed Gradisen and Solomon Pogue-Englert went head-to-head in an all-West Australian 16-and-under boys’ final.

Surfing with great power and precision, Gradisen was impressive, putting on the performance of the event with a perfect 10-point ride and an impressive two-wave combined total of 18.75 (from a possible 20). “The waves really suited my style of surfing and it was great to get out there and try and entertain,” he said.

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Coral Durant from Red Bluff looked in great sync with the ocean and used a strong forehand attack to throw down a combined total of 16.25.

Durant said the competition was the best one of the year.

“This means a lot to me and I want to thank Taj and all my family who were there supporting me today,” she said.

Hardy, of Margaret River, used her smooth flowing style to post a total of 12.50 to oust Rosie Smart from Coffs Harbour in NSW.

“Everyone pushes everyone to get better and better, and the waves were really good,” Hardy said.

Ex-pro surfer Taj Burrow even got in the water for a few waves and said he was glad the waves had “turned up”.

“The groms have been absolutely shredding and it’s been amazing to see it all going down,” he said.

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