Australian Indigenous Champ Russell Molony takes out Wandiyali Classic
Newcastle, NSW, Australia, Wednesday 13th February, 2013.
CURRENT Australian Indigenous surfing champion Russell Molony from Berkeley Vale (New South Wales) has won his eighth Wandiyali Classic at Merewether beach.
Molony wrested back the title after Joe Haddon temporarily took hold of the crown in 2012.
The 36-year-old carpenter – who is also the current Australian Open Mens Champion and will represent the nation at the International Surfing Association world titles in Panama in May – pulled off a maximum ten-point-ride in the small conditions on the first day of Surfest Newcastle Australia 2013 at Merewether beach.
But the luck and good fortune didn’t run all his way – he copped a bluebottle sting in the final and it was only the thought of stoking the mantle piece with yet another piece of silverware that stopped him from getting out of the water to apply an ice-pack to his bitten body.
It’s unfortunate for spectators that Molony won’t be donning the rashie next week.
“The QS (World Qualifying Series) is finished for me now. I’ve just taken on my son full-time and I am focused on working and earning some money, but I’ve got the world titles in May and the Australian Indigenous title defence later this year so there’s plenty of surfing ahead of me.
“But it’s back on the tools tomorrow, building a pergola just round the corner from home so there’s no partying tonight,” the affable carpenter said.
Second in the men’s open was Jack Germain – less than half Molony’s age at just 16.
Germain, who belongs to Port Macquarie boardriders and lives at Lake Cathie, also took out the junior men’s final.
The youngster will be surfing in the Burton Toyota Pro Junior that gets underway at the same beach tomorrow. His best result to date in a Pro Junior was making it through a couple of heats in Tahiti in 2012.
The final of the Wandiyali Women’s competition was won by Chae Moloney (no relation to Russell).
The 16-year-old Ulladulla High student, who hails from Berrara on the New South Wales south coast, travelled eight hours by train after school yesterday to arrive in Newcastle in the early hours this morning.
Chae and her 18-year-old sister Summer didn’t mind the train trip one bit.
“I was a bit tired but it was great to be surfing today and it was a really fun day except for the bluebottle sting,” Moloney said while applying ice to her leg after the final.
“I only got the call yesterday to enter and so it was all go to get here and now I have to get back to get to school tomorrow.”
The youngster came fourth in the Teenage Rampage Under-16 last year and was part of the duo that won the NSW High Schools Girls Team Event in Coffs Harbour in 2012.
Indigenous surfers travelled from as far away as Cowes in Victoria to compete in the event, which was opened by a Welcome to Country ceremony conducted in language by Anthony Ridgeway.
Surfers were also treated to a welcome by Yoo-Kul Wung-Hah (Have Heart to Dance) Karuah/Worimi dancers.
Action recommences at Merewether Beach at 7am tomorrow with the commencing round of 112 in the Burton Toyota Pro Junior.
Wandiyali Indigenous Classic Men’s Open
1. Russell Molony (Berkeley Vale, NSW) $500
2. Jack Germain (Lake Cathie, NSW) $250
3. Max Tatam (Forster, NSW) $150
4. Jordie Campbell (Sandy Point, NSW) $100
Wandiyali Indigenous Classic Junior Men’s
1. Jack Germain (Lake Cathie, NSW) $200
2. Kyle Slabb (Fingal Head, NSW) $150
3. Joe Wallace (Caringbah, NSW) $100
Wandiyali Indigenous Classic Women’s Division
1. Chae Moloney (Berrara, NSW) $200
2. Stella Crick (Coledale, NSW) $150
3. Ginaya Herare (Stockton, NSW) $100
4. Bobbi Law (Nelson Bay, NSW) $75
5. Summer Molony (Berrara, NSW) $75
Attached pic of Wandiyali Indigenous Classic winner Russell Molony courtesy of RedMonkey.
About Surfest Newcastle Australia
The 2013 Surfest Newcastle Australia features the Burton Toyota Pro (Men’s ASP 6-Star) and the Hunter Ports Women’s Classic (Women’s ASP 6-Star), along with eight supporting events. The event is made possible with the support of Burton Toyota, the Hunter Sports Sports Group, Newcastle City Council and the NSW Government through Destination NSW. Surfest Newcastle Australia is conducted over 12 days from February 13-24 at Merewether beach, a recognised Australian National Surfing Reserve. Merewether is home to festival patron and Australia’s most accomplished men’s world professional surfing champion, four-time world champion Mark Richards (1979-82) and presents the winner a trophy in his likeness. 2013 marks the festival’s 28th year and with over 800 national and international competitors, Surfest Newcastle Australia is the largest festival of surfing in the southern hemisphere. Get up-to-the minute updates, photos and interviews, as well as the program of events at surfest.com or follow us on Facebook or Twitter.