Displaying items by tag: European Surfing Championships
#SURFING - Irish surfing ace Easkey Britton sat down with Cooler magazine to chat about her "whirlwind" last few months.
Britton, who comes from the highly regarded Donegal surfing dynasty, has spent much of this year jugging her studies towards a PhD in marine science with her training for the European Surfing Championships in her home county this past September.
"I don’t know how anyone survives their PhD without being able to jump in the sea and catch some waves," she says. "It clears my mind, renews my energy – the best ‘study breaks’ you can get. And I appreciate the sessions I have a lot more."
Now heading into winter, with the surf getting bigger every day, she's in training with tow partner Neil Britton for the second Tow-In Surf Session at Mullaghmore Head.
She says of last year's inaugural competition: "The conditions were unreal. Huge, clean, light winds, sunshine. A very rare combo. It was our first ever experience of something like that. The crowds covering the headland were massive, it felt like an amphitheater, or being a gladiator in the arena!"
Britton also talks about how her family has been a big inspiration to her both in her life and her accomplishments on the surfboard.
Cooler has more on the story HERE.
Last Saturday's Irish Times features an interview with Hawaiian surfing champion Bethany Hamilton who was in Bundoran for Eurosurf 2011 - where the film of her incredible true life experiences, Soul Surfer, had its gala premiere.
As previously reported on Afloat.ie, Soul Surfer tells the story of how Hamilton battled against all odds to become a champion again after losing her arm in a shark attack when she was just 13 years of age.
Most people would be put off surfing for life after such an ordeal, but Hamilton felt she would be lost without it.
"My passion for surfing outweighed my fear of sharks or anything else that might stop me from going in there," she said. "I was so excited to be back in the ocean and once I did it I felt like I was back at home and where I felt comfortable."
The Irish Times has more on the story HERE.
Team Portugal were crowned European Surfing Champions at the final day of Eurosurf 2011 in Bundoran yesterday.
It's the first time the Portuguese have held the title since 1997, which is also when the event was last hosted in the Co Donegal seaside town.
Portugal won three of the seven different categories, with two second-place finishes, one third place and one fourth.
Their surfers fought tooth and nail in a week of competition that was dominated by France, who made a bold statement of intent on the opening day by scoring eight out of the best 15 waves - and led the pack until the closing sessions.
Meanwhile Team Ireland did not finish too badly, placing a respectable sixth in the final tally.
Ashleigh Smith made the biggest mark for the Irish, being narrowly beaten into second place in the women's bodyboarding division by Portugal's Catarina Sousa.
“We’ve been delighted with how the week has gone for Eurosurf," said Eurosurf press officer Shane Smyth. "If we were to draw up a blueprint for a surf competition considering waves, weather and organisation we would have nailed it."
The BBC News website also has an image gallery of the week's action HERE.
The final line-up has been confirmed for Ireland's team at the European Surfing Championships in Bundoran later this week.
Rossnowlagh's John Britton joins his cousin Easkey Britton in the strong squad aiming for Eurosurf gold.
The rest of the team includes two-time Irish national champ Shane Meehan; former Irish Open Champion Stephen Kilfeather; and multiple-time women's body board champion Ashleigh Smith.
Also in the squad are Cain Kilcullen from Enniscrone; open surfer Oliver O’Flaherty; 2008 WSCS Longboard Champion Stephen Kelleher; Irish Student Champion Ronan Oertzen; Bundoran's Shauna Ward; body boarder Darragh McCarter; and Irish team veterans John McCurry and Richie Fitzgerald.
The action kicks off in Bundoran on 23 September with the competition running till 2 October.
Derry punk legends The Undertones will headline a hit music lineup to entertain the crowds at Eurosurf 2011 in Bundoran later this month.
The band best known for 'Teenage Kicks' top a weekend-long bill that includes popular traditional fusion group Kila, who will kick off the Eurosurf party on the Friday in what's often considered the 'surfing capital of Ireland'.
Dubliners Royseven will also play after the gala screening of Soul Surfer on Saturday 24 September.
The full lineup is available at discoverbundoran.com.
Eurosurf press officer Shane Smyth said: "We are thrilled with the calibre of musical acts which have been confirmed to play in Bundoran during Eurosurf.
"The Undertones, Royseven and Kíla are sure to offer visitors and spectators an exciting and complementary plan which will ensure that between surfing and entertainment, a great time and experience will be had by all."
The European Surfing Championships take place in Bundoran from 24 September to 2 October.
A new film telling the true story of Hawaiian surfer Bethany Hamilton will have its gala Irish screening following the opening ceremony of Eurosurf 2011 in Bundoran on Saturday 24 September.
Soul Surfer stars AnnaSophia Robb as Hamilton, who lost her arm in a shark attack yet battled against all odds to become a champion again.
The film features an all-star cast including Helen Hunt, Dennis Quaid and American Idol winner Carrie Underwood in her film debut.
The story also has a special connection to Bundoran, as Bethany Hamilton is descended from a well-known family in the area. Bethany even visited the town some years ago to find out more about her heritage.
"We are thrilled to have the gala Irish screening of Soul Surfer as part of the opening festivities for Eurosurf," said press officer Shane Smyth. "Such an inspirational film is bound to inject even more enthusiasm for the competitors taking part in the European Surfing Championships as the contest prepares to kick off.
"Having already seen the film, I can say that viewers are in for a treat – some stunning photography and some awesome surfing.”
The European Surfing Championships take place in Bundoran from 24 September to 2 October.
Stephen Kilfeather retained his Irish Open Surfing Championship title at last weekend's County Sligo Open.
The 24-year-old Sligo native squeaked past fellow Team Ireland members Cain Kilcullen and Ronan Oertzen to clinch the title for the second year in a row at the final event of the 2011 Irish surfing tour.
“I’m stoked to win it again," said Kilfeather, who also came first at the weekend. "Back to back for two years running is a great achievement.”
He said the competition was “a great warm-up for the European Surfing Championships in Bundoran" next month.
Team Ireland members did well in the overall rankings in Sligo, with John Britton taking the senior title, Ashleigh Smith the women’s body board title, Shane Meehan the Bodyboard title, Easkey Britton the women’s title and John McCurry regaining the longboard title. Team Ireland manager Stevie Burns was also successful, winning the Masters title.
Budding photographers and designers from across Ireland, the UK and Europe are encouraged to take part in the Eurosurf European Surfing Championships poster design competition.
The winner will see their photo or design appear on the official contest poster and other promotional materials, and will also have the use of a Bunk Camper campervan for the duration of the weekend festival in Bundoran this September.
Eurosurf press officer Shane Smyth said: “Every day [on websites] we see some amazing images and designs relating to surfing. With such artistic talent out there, we decided to offer this opportunity to anyone who wants to take part with the hope of seeing their design appear on the official Eurosurf poster."
Full details for entries are available on the Eurosurf Bundoran website. The closing date for submission is Wednesday 10 August, so get your creative hats on!
Donegal will be represented by five surfers on the Irish team selected for the Eurosurf European Surfing Championships in Bundoran later this year.
Donegal Daily reports that Bundoran residents Ronan Oertzen (20), Shauna Ward (24), Darragh McCarter (25) and Richie Fitzgerald (36) will join 25-year-old Easkey Britton from Rossnowlagh on the team, after qualifying in a series of selection events.
One position on the team remains to be filled, and will be decided in a 'surf-off' between Rossnowlagh's John Britton and Keith O'Brien from Tramore at the Sea Sessions festival in Bundoran from 24-26 June.
The Irish Surf team will be coachedby Pascal Devine and managed by Stevie Burns, who have 40 years of surfing experience between them.
Donegal Daily has more on the story HERE.
The 2011 Portrush Open Surfing Championships take place this weekend from 9-10 April.
Ireland's best surfers are expected to take part in the two days of competition, which will also be the decicing contest for selecting surfers to represent Ireland at the European Championships in Bundoran later this year.
Causeway Coast Surf Club chairman Gerard McAuley told the Coleraine Times: “The Portrush Open is now Ireland’s best surf contest. As surfing becomes more and more popular, we are expecting large numbers of competitors and spectators to attend."
Top internationals Cain Killcullen, Aaron Reid and Ronan Oertzen are set to clash with the likes of local prospect 'Long' John McCurry in the men's open, while Easkey Britton is setting her sights on the women's open title.
The weekend will also feature events such as art exhibitions and a packed entertainment programme for competitors and spectators alike.
The Coleraine Times has more on the story HERE.