Media Releases 2016

Posted on 29/04/2016 by Phillip Island Nature Parks

Celebrate Surfing at the Annual Teams Challenge 

Ninety surfers are registered for the third annual Phillip Island National Surfing Reserve Surfing Teams Challenge to be held on Saturday 30 April. 

Back due to popular demand, the event will follow the same tag team format as previous years ensuring a fun-filled day for spectators and surfers. 

“The event is a way to bring the community together to celebrate the reserve and to enjoy surfing the quality waves on offer,” says Geoff Owens, member of the Phillip Island National Surfing Reserve community working group. 

“The competition’s unique format ensures that everyone can have a go in a fun and supportive event with great prizes on offer.” 

The 2016 competition categories are: super grommet (under 14), junior (21 and under), open man, open woman, kneeboarder, single fin rider, Malibu rider, over 50 short board rider and Twin Fin (pre-1985) surfer. There are also bonus points for family members within a team and an equalisation rule applies. 

The ten teams registered will showcase surfers of all ages, styles and abilities and include representation from Island Surfboards (last year’s winners), Archysurf, Phillip Island Nature Parks and Newhaven College. Team captains also feature well known Island surfers such as Bob Matthews, Walter Hiatt and Matt Ware. 

Saturday’s wind, wave and weather conditions are looking favourable for the challenge to be held at Cape Woolamai main beach. Any change to the location will be published on the National Surfing Reserve facebook page on the day. 

Friends and family are encouraged to come along to the beach to cheer on the teams. “This celebration of Phillip Island’s surf culture is a fantastic family day,” says Geoff.  

“We will have a barbeque happening and there’ll be the 2016 limited edition Surfing Teams Challenge T-shirt on sale. You don’t have to be in the water to be part of the fun.” 

Dave Fincher Memorial trophy

Along with $2000 first prize, the teams have the added incentive of competing for the ‘Dave Fincher Memorial Trophy’ in honour of one of the Island’s surfing legends. The trophy was won by the Island Surfboards team in 2015 who are sure to fight hard to hold onto it in 2016. 

Cape Woolamai Surf Life Saving Club will open the bar from 5pm with a delicious $10 evening meal for hungry surfers and supporters as they wait for the all important presentation ceremony. With $2000 for first prize, $1000 for second place and $500 for third as well as other great giveaways, the event is set to be a winner for participants and spectators.

May the best team win! 

Watch for live updates throughout the day at our Facebook page: ‘Phillip Island NSR’ or call Geoff Owens, Event Organiser, on 0418 521 425. 


Background Information:

Victoria’s only National Surfing Reserve

The Phillip Island National Surfing Reserve is the first of its kind in Victoria and one of only 18 across Australia. Each of the four areas within the reserve was selected for their unique attributes: 

- ‘Cat Bay’ includes Left and Right Point breaks along with Flynns Reef.  Cat Bay was included in the Reserve for its high quality breaks that allow surfing in big swells when the other south-facing beaches on Phillip Island are onshore. 

- ‘Summerland’ is the ‘birthplace’ of surfing on Phillip Island dating back to the 1920s and boasts iconic reef breaks that work in the largest of swells. 

- ‘Smiths Beach’ includes the ‘hero wave’ Express Point, a barrelling reef break, along with its importance in training the surfers of the future at the sheltered beaches of Smiths and YCW. 

- ‘Cape Woolamai’ includes the world famous breaks at ANZACS and the Clubhouse. 

The philosophy of National Surfing Reserves is to ‘care, share and preserve’. National Surfing Reserves is a voluntary collaboration dedicated to recognising iconic surfing sites in Australia and assisting NSR sites globally. Self funded and non-political, the National Reference Group comprises experienced individuals from across Australia to facilitate NSR nominations and management processes. 

The Phillip Island National Surfing Reserve community project continues to be proudly supported by: Bendigo Community Bank San Remo, Cowes and Grantville; Ramada Phillip Island; Phillip Island Nature Parks; Bass Coast Shire Council; Phillip Island Board Riders Club and Woolamai Beach Surf Life Saving Club. 

We thank event sponsors and supporters: Karoon Gas Australia Limited, Island Surfboards, Reece, Islantis Surf Experience, Westernport Water, San Remo IGA and Full Circle. 

Event information and updates can be found on Facebook: ‘Phillip Island NSR’, or call Geoff Owens, Event Organiser on 0418 521 425. 


Media contacts:

Sally O’Neill  0408 101

Eleanor McKay - 0422 313 847