The 2014 edition of the Retro Comp was blessed with some great conditions this year. A wafting offshore kept a lazy 3ft swell glassy until the final buzzer - ideal conditions when you're trying to navigate heavy ancient craft through the line up. It was a fairly intimate affair this year and the no show from last years Retro champs didn't go un-noticed as we were all looking forward to the re-match to bring the trophy back to Albertown.
The Retro dress code was once again well supported, Breuks looking fine with his big 'Side Show Bob' hair and Mike Roberts looking like he was straight out of some seedy 80's hair studio ad. There were jump suits, safari suits, leg warmers and a decent smattering of your regulation Hawaiian shirts to boot. All combos of competitors turned up from younger to older, boys, girls, fathers and sons, elder statesmen, men of ill repute, fathers versus daughters, mothers versus daughters, mothers and sons, friends became enemies, all kinds of combos really. No matter who you were, everyone wanted their hand on that trophy.
Each team had to pick two boards so, after a bit of jostling and some argie bargie to get what the captains thought were the best boards, we finally took to the surf. You can always pick the 'old salts' in this event because they nestle straight in with grace and style, drawing lines on their single and twin fins as they did in the old days. The impatient youth, on the other hand, took a while to work out they had to gently coerce their craft into turns because twisting and leaning as their board continues on in a straight line wasn't going to cut it. To their credit, and with the right board selection, it didn't take them too long to work it all out.
Consistent surfing from the Cosmic Shredders, lead by Evie Dupuy (daughter of Ali Fitzgibbons) had them on top after the first hour-long heat. In a brazen attempt to climb up the leader board, Bryn Roberts of teamÂ Hare Robolts loosened Evie's leg rope in the second heat hoping she'd have to waste time swimming in to shore for her board. Quite ironically her rope and board never parted but as luck would have it, Bryn's leg rope snapped and he had to swim in for his. Team Hare RoBolts never recovered. Meanwhile, 'Team Shenanigans' were putting in a solid second heat and had their hands nearly on the trophy as Jason Oostdam pulled off a stylish semi floater/reo on one wave and then busted through a thin curtain from a small, inside, 1/2 second tube on another. Not to be out done though were the Tubular Kyz who all surfed a great final with Pud capping it off by annihilating one wave late in the piece with three impressive shralps, throwing rooster tails all over the joint and then claiming a very strategic double whamie. This doubled his points for the wave giving him 18 points out of 10 and thus sealing the title for the team in yellow.
If you think this sounds like a great day and you missed out because you weren't there than you are right. A lot of crew might look in and think comps are about chest puffing and thinking you're pretty good but, as we know, it's not about that at all. It's really just an excuse to hang with friends doing what you love to do and having a laugh at the same time. Thanks to the girls in the kitchen who kept the bacon and egg rolls rolling and everyone for a great day.
Special mention to Reece McLean, Ali Fitz and Jac Coe for turning up, judging all day and not even getting in the water. Thanks also to Albany Surf and Skate and Aido's Boardroom for putting their hands up as usual to collect entries for the comp. Royal Patisserie looked after us with some rolls so make sure you help them out with a few loaves yourself sometime.
Youngest Competitor: Noah Dupuy - he'll be the schralp master like his old man one day soon no doubt.
Best cooks: Jaz Breuker and Lily Minter
Club Secretary of the Year: Kelly Waterhouse for once again keeping the scores (and everyone else) honest, collecting entries and cash.
1st - Tubular Kyz (Noah Dupuy, Griffin Spargo, Holly Minter, Kylene and Pud)
2nd - Cosmic Shredders (Evie Dupuy, Pemba Spargo, Adam, Breuks, Oxy)
3rd - Team Shenanigans (Talon Delacey, Flynn Breuker, Jason Oostdam, Mitch and Gary 'G' Force Connell)
4th - Hare RoBolts (Bryn and Sascha Roberts, Matt Hare, Mike Roberts, Mr Bolt)