24.3 C
Byron Shire
February 23, 2024

Joel Taylor crowned parasurfer champ

Latest News

An adventure of a different kind

Two years ago adventurer Emma Scattergood discovered that a journey doesn’t always involve travel. In 2022, Emma was told she had stage 3 invasive lobular breast cancer. 

Other News

GemLife’s seniors’ housing estate (again) and more Ballina Council 2024 court action

A conciliation conference between the Ballina Shire Council and developers wanting to build a seniors’ resort-style estate in West Ballina is to happen in less than three weeks.

Knock down Byron’s forests

And another FU to the community, from the dominantly pro-development Council. Submissions due by 23 February on the proposed...

Save Wallum protesters celebrate community support

A localised community campaign against development on ecologically sensitive land at Brunswick Heads continues, with more than 300 protestors said to have been on site over the weekend.

Australian cycling legend’s legacy for Byron Bay Wildlife Hospital

The family of Australian cycling champion Sir Hubert Opperman has left a significant donation in his name to Byron Bay Wildlife Hospital to help it continue providing lifesaving veterinary care for Australian wildlife.

NSW Aboriginal Land Councils elections this weekend

Elections for members of NSW Aboriginal Land Councils (NSWALC) are on this weekend and NSWALC CEO Yuseph Deen stresses the critical significance of active participation in shaping the future of Aboriginal communities in New South Wales.

Interview with Hayley Grace

Hayley Grace’s response to post-flood PTSD, was to look at life and healing in a different way, then come through the other side writing about it – her new single ‘Mary Jane’ is the result. Hayley and The Bay Collective, a raucous seven-piece big band – featuring a full horn section, guitar, bass, keys and percussion – will launch the song this week and play some shows to get it out there. Seven spoke to Hayley on the weekend to get her POV on The Bay Collective and recovery.

Lennox Head parasurfer, Joel Taylor, has been crowned World Champion (prone division) after dominating a week of surf- ing against an international field at California’s Hunting- ton Beach.

Joel Taylor after his win. Photo supplied

‘I don’t think it’s sunk in yet, to be honest. I’ve dreamt of being world champion since I was 13 years old’.

‘To actually do it, three decades later, when I thought I wouldn’t ever surf again, is surreal,’ he said.

‘I worked really hard to achieve this goal I set my sights on 12 months ago, and I made a lot of sacrifices and my family did too.’

Following support from the local community for his GoFundMe campaign, Joel was able to travel to the event with his family.

Team captain

Moreover, Joel was team captain at his first ever inter- national competition.

‘It was a huge honour to lead the national team,’ he said.

The former Byron Bay High Schooler had five surfs across six days to get to the champion’s podium.

‘The conditions were surprisingly good,’ he said.

‘Huntington Beach can be hit or miss, but we got lucky and there was one metre

clean swell for the entire week.’

Joel started surfing as a bodyboarder over 30 years ago before an accident left him a paraplegic.

Joel’s return to the surf was facilitated by finding the right equipment.

After an extended search he finally found a board that

was exactly as he imagined. ‘As soon as I got my hands

on it, I knew instantly.
‘This is it,’ he said. Former multiple champi-

onship winner, Mark ‘Mono’ Stewart, missed out on a podium finish this year.

It was the first time this has happened to the Byron Bay local since 2015.

Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Police confirm two babies dead on February 11 in Mullumbimby

NSW Police have confirmed that at about 2am Sunday 11 February, emergency services were called to a home in Mullumbimby following reports of a concern for welfare.

Just what the doctor and nurses and midwives ordered

It seems like nurses and midwives are always struggling under the weight of poor patient-to-staff ratios. It is hoped that an influx of new workers could help ease the load. This will be a welcome relief for local staff.

Affordable housing summit next week

As the affordable housing issue shows no signs of easing in the near future, key figures in the housing, property, and finance sectors will come together to tackle the country’s housing challenges at the ninth Affordable Housing Development & Investment Summit

Lorikeets on the mend as paralysis season eases

A poorly-understood phenomenon where lorikeets in the region becoming paralysed and unable to fly is thankfully coming to an end for 2024, says WIRES wildlife vet, Dr Tania Bishop.