Emerald Beach longboard surfer Paul Scholten celebrates a hometown victory at the bcu Australian Surf Festival.
Emerald Beach longboard surfer Paul Scholten celebrates a hometown victory at the bcu Australian Surf Festival. Ethan Smith / Surfing NSW

Major events to make Coffs the ‘Surf City’ of 2016

SURFING NSW has confirmed allocation of four major events to Coffs Harbour and made a tentative booking for another when releasing its 2016 calendar.

The big-ticket item is the bcu Australian Surf Festival to be held for the third time, starting on July 30, which has been named as one of four “benchmark” events.

The first five days of the ASF will be taken up by the national championships for open shortboards and surfmasters’ divisions, with a full week set aside for longboard events.

The festival ends with a three-day bodyboard competition.

Local knowledge has been a big advantage in the past two years with numerous Coffs Coast surfers stepping up to the podium.

Emerald Beach is a longboard stronghold with father and son duo, Harley and Mark Ingleby, and Paul Scholten (see image) successful in 2015.

Lead-up qualifying events to the Australian titles will be conducted at venues along the coast where surfers will vie for NSW honours.

Major changes have the introduction of a new Yamba Surf Festival for open longboards, shortboards and logs, and a week-long NSW Junior championship at Port Macquarie for longboarders and shortboarders.

For juniors, the Billabong Oz Grom Cup returns on April 18-23, with round two of Wahu Surf Groms booked for October, with the dates still to be finalised.

Also to be finalised for May is the North Coast heat of the Ocean and Earth NSW Junior Surf championships to be held in conjunction with Cooper Surf Australia.

Finally, March 13 is earmarked for the North Coast regional round of the NSW Junior Shortboard titles with confirmation pending.



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