Huxtable dominates surf’s return

Xavier Huxtable. (Steve Ryan) 259005_01

Ash Bolt

Competitive surfing was back after a six-month break last weekend and Jan Juc’s Xavier Huxtable showed his talent, taking out the win at the first round of the Victorian Open Series as part of the West Coast Surf Festival.

Huxtable dominated Saturday’s competition at Jan Juc, scoring more than 16 points out of a possible 20 in every heat he surfed and finishing in the final with a 16.10 heat total.

Point Lonsdale’s Bohdie Williams finished second with 15.60 points, while Jan Juc’s Tully Wylie and Willis Droomer finished third and fourth with 14.80 and 10.87 points respectively.

In the women’s division, former Australian junior champion and Barwon Heads local Ellie Harrison was just bested by Sophie Fletcher in the final, finishing second with 13.17 points.

Jan Juc’s Zoe Clarke finished third with 10.77 points and Torquay’s Emily McGettigan rounded out the top four with 7.86 points.

There was a slight increase in swell on Sunday as the competition moved back to Bells Beach for the Victorian Team Titles.

Reigning champion Torquay Boardriders Club was the strongest on the day but missed on claiming the win after being docked five points for an incorrect board swap in the final.

After breaking his board, Huxtable swapped his board with team mate Cahill Bell-Warren, who was waiting in the water in the change-over zone as the next surfer for Torquay, which was not allowed according to the Surfing Australia rule book.

The penalty left them with a score of 35.50, falling short of Phillip Island Boardriders’ 35.87.

However Torquay continued its dominance in the junior division, leaving the rest of the field in its wake, with a combined heat total of 40.93 – almost double the second-placed Peninsula Surfriders.

In the new female only division, Torquay secured the inaugural win with heat total of 37.63.