All of the lead up events have been played out and next weekend the Surf Zombies will descend on Byron Bay for the culmination of the Volcom Let The Kids Ride Free Australian VQS Surf Series Championships.
The purpose of the program is to create a unique environment, not a typical contest, but more like a gathering. It is where people can come together and hang out, without all the fees, rules, stipulations and lack of camaraderie of a normal surfing event.
The Let The Kids Ride Free events are about giving back to the surf community and making it possible for kids without sponsors or money to compete, be able to show off their talent, pushing the next generation to be better than the last.
The VQS Champs will be held in Byron Bay, where the dead walk among us. This year, Volcom warn everyone to be prepared to be frightened. ‘The Zombies have risen from The Wreck and they’re coming for you!’
Finalists have qualified from one of the five VQS events held around the country over the past year.
Last Sunday, runner-up in the VQS D’Bar juniors Quinn Bruce came down from his home break on the Goldy to check out the lay of the land and sea. ‘I have surfed here a few times before’, says Quinn who at just fifteen years of age, is staring a stellar professional career right in the eyes.
Quinn has been surfing since he was seven and says that he will finish year ten and then concentrate on the waves. Quinn was a stand out all day in his event of the VQS series held on September 22 last year, throwing down some huge scores to take second in the final.
Quinn says his favourite home break is D’Bar and the biggest issue in Coolangatta is the crowds. ‘When the waves are good there are hundreds of people and it’s hard but you get used to it. Everyday there are new people surfing and it’s pretty chaotic surfing with lots of people.
Another surfer to be on the lookout for is Mitch Parkinson who just this last weekend took out the first event of the Chiko Queensland Championship Circuit (QCC), the MP Classic, in excellent waves at Duranbah Beach on the Gold Coast.
With a total of 18.06 (out of a possible 20), 17-year-old Parkinson held off fellow Snapper Rocks surfer, Mitch Crews – 16.13, Brazil’s Italo Ferreira – 14.10 and Coolangatta’s Clancy Dawson – 10.60 in a high-scoring final. ‘I’m ecstatic’, he said after his win. ‘I’ve just been training with my coach for so long have a good result and it’s been such a long time coming, I’m just so happy it’s finally come.’
Mitch came first in his VQS event at D’Bar and is now in the running for the major prize at Byron – The winner of the Pro Am division along with the international winners (Japan, Indo, Brazil, Latin America, South Africa, Europe, and the USA) will win a trip to Fiji to compete in the World VQS Championship event during Volcom’s Fiji Pro next year. This competition will run in between the Fiji Pro and will also be broadcast globally.
The action starts this weekend in Byron. Visit the Volcom website for more details www.volcom.com.au.