Bali’s Made Pajar Ariyana and West Australia’s Willow Hardy claimed their second consecutive North Nias International Surfing Competition victories today at Turedawola Beach in Afulu, ending three days of competition at the scenic and pristine North Nias point, where an international field of men and women battled it out for the top spot on the podium and the honor of claiming victory.

In the Women’s Division Final, Willow Hardy charged into the lead early with mid-level score of 5.83 (out of a possible 10 point) on turns, then wowed the spectators by taking off on a bigger set wave, cutting back and then racing down the line and landing a dramatic air-drop off a massive floater with full control to earn an excellent 8.17 score from the judging panel.

The waves went a bit quiet after the first 10 minutes, leaving her sister Olive and Indonesia’s Jasmine Studer to chase waves and earn smaller scores on the inside waves. Studer started to find her rhythm later in the final, posting a 6.67 on turns, and Olive Hardy found her highest score of a 5.37 on the last wave, but when time expired it was a clear win by last year’s Women’s Champion to score her second consecutive victory.

“So amazing to be back here, it’s one of my favorite places with such good waves,” said Hardy. “I really wasn’t thinking so much about winning, just about going out and having fun, get a couple waves and have fun with the other girls. I’m definitely coming back next year, this place is so incredible, the locals are so nice, so ya…I’ll be back next year for sure.”

In the Men’s Division Final it was an all Indonesian affair, with last year’s champion Made Pajar Ariyana from Bali wasting no time getting started, taking to the air not once but twice on his first wave to earn a 5.83 (out of a possible 10). A few minutes later he was in perfect position on one of the best waves of the final, and on his forehand slashed three big turns for a 6.83, which would be the highest single wave score of the final.

The other finalists were all on their backhand and couldn’t match Ariyana, with fellow Balinese competitor Made Joi Satriawan coming in second, Lakey Peak’s (Sumbawa) Oney Anwar in third, and Sorake’ (South Nias) Yoza Zagoto in fourth place.

“I feel really happy, stoked to be here and to get the win again,’ said Ariyana. “I was just having fun out there, with the boys. I didn’t have a plan or strategy to win, just go out there and have fun. It’s such a good wave and a good place here, always happy to be here.”

The first two days of the competition saw the best conditions, with near perfect waves rolling down the point and offering barrels and turns, and the occasional air section. Today the swell was inconsistent with variable winds, but offered very constable waves when they rolled through.

The North Nias International Surfing Competition was formally ended by a closing ceremony that included dancing, speeches, and an awards presentation.

In his speech, the PSOI’s Secretary General Tipi Jabrik encouraged the community to support the Regent and his efforts to develop the area as a tourist destination by working with the Afulu Boardriders, taking care of the environment and the waves, which is their best asset, and not to throw trash everywhere but to keep the area clean and natural. Finally he pledged the support of the PSOI to aid them in their development.

Next was North Nias Regent Amizaru Waruwu, who first thanked the surfer for coming to join in the competition, the PSOI for all their help in organizing and supporting the surfing community, and all the members of the local community together with the government agencies that worked to make the event happen and to make it a success. He finished by promising to have the event again next year and to ensure that more development, including accommodations, will happen in the interim.

A total of 30 male and 4 female competitors from 7 different countries joined in the 3 day event.

For the full details including heat scores, click on this link: https://liveheats.com/events/240716

The North Nias International Surfing Competition was sponsored by the North Nias Regency and organized by the Persatuan Selancar Ombak Indonesia (PSOI) with media production by the Asian Surf Cooperative (ASC)


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