After a false start earlier in the month, its all systems go for the 25th annual Yaroomba Classic surfing comp this weekend (3&4 November).
Originally set down for October 13 and 14, a lack of swell forced a postponement of the event and anticipation for this weekend’s competition has reached fever pitch.
Arguably the friendliest and most-anticipated event on the local surfing calendar, the Yaroomba Classic is unique in that only local or returned surfers from Marcus Beach to Maroochy River are eligible to enter.
Proudly carrying on the tradition of the original Rod Marshall Memorial from the late 80’s, the iconic surfing event is now presented by the Coolum Boardriders as the Yaroomba Classic and offers a rare opportunity for home-grown surfers to reconnect and celebrate their hometown roots in a feel-good, fun atmosphere.
For the past 25 years, it has pitted mate against mate and, more often than not, families against families with multi-generations representing across the varied divisions.
There’s always plenty of family-friendly rivalry out of the water as well, and a win in one of the beach competitions holds just as much power as a surfing heat win, with the hidden aim of keeping the groms as entertained as possible during the weekend.
The familiar cry of ‘crumbed sausages’ remains a secret language known only to Yaroomba Classic faithful – and tends to bring the kids running from everywhere with the promise of more sand in the eyes meaning better prize winnings!
Reputations will once again be on the line as an all-out battle for hometown supremacy erupts between 2011 winner and title defender Trevor Tripcony (Yaroomba) and perpetual top four placegetter and last year’s runner-up, Eli Criaco (Coolum).
But, with a raft of young guns contesting the Blue Ribbon division this year, the pair may have to work a little harder to keep ahead of the game.
It’s also ‘game on’ in the women’s divisions, and with the line-up reminiscent of a state title clash and a hometown audience to impress, the girls will be pulling out all stops to notch up a 2012 title win.
The most entertaining part of the weekend however comes when the ‘old salts’ go head to head in full view of their uber-talented surfing children in the masters divisions.
For the most part, it’s a timely reminder that their parents can still carve it up with the best of them, but the kids find the opportunity to reverse roles and judge the ‘grown-ups’ irresistible.
Divisions across the weekend include 14 and under, 16 and under, 18 and under, I6 and under Girls, Open Mens, Open Womens, Over 28, Over 40 and Over 50. The action gets underway at Yaroomba Beach (conditions permitting) from 7am on Saturday (3 Nov) and continues all day Sunday.