Byron Bay’s ’Mark ‘Mono’ Stewart has successfully defended his world title at the 2016 Stance International Surfing Association (ISA) World Adaptive Surfing Championship at San Diego in California.
‘Mono’ dominated the final with a 15.50 score that included an excellent 8.00 ride up against fellow adaptive surfers from Hawaii, Brazil and France.
‘The passion and energy of these surfers is second to none,’ said ISA president Fernando Aguerre.
‘These surfers’ determination, dedication and passion for surfing is incredible. The sport of Adaptive Surfing has taken a huge step forward and will continue to spread joy to the lives of others around the world,’ he added.
Ex world tour professional surfer Damien Hobgood, came down to La Jolla Shores to show his support for the sport of Adaptive Surfing.
‘I was frothing to get down here,’ said Mr Hobgood. ‘These athletes are fearless and full of courage. It’s inspirational for me and everyone here watching on the beach.’ Mark Stewart said, ‘Winning this time means the most to me compared to last year as there has been such a big progression of the sport coming forward after last year’s inaugural event.
‘Thanks to David Parkes for my kneeboards, which we have worked on for many years. Parkes is a master shaper and without his skills and efforts to work with me on my boards I wouldn’t be in this position today. It’s a unique design that works for me and we are feel privileged to pass on that design knowledge to some of the other competitors from last years World Adaptive Surfing Championship and to see them benefit from that this year is awesome.
‘Thanks to the whole community back home at Byron Bay for their support, they really rallied behind me and raised money to help get me here, thanks very much to the Byron Bay community for their help, it means the world to me.’