A significant weather system by the name of Cody was a very welcome visitor to Red Beach’s Owen Chapman Cup surf carnival on Saturday, January 15.
Tropical cyclone Cody whipped up the best surf ever experienced in the 66-year history of the event with swells reaching 1.5m in height, forming 150m beyond the Red Beach reef before rolling into the beach. Along with the fine weather and a temperature of 26°C, the carnival was given a massive injection of top talent with the arrival of 86 athletes from the Bay of Plenty. Because of adverse surf conditions at Mt Maunganui, the Bay of Plenty Champs were canned and athletes headed north to compete in the Owen Chapman. Their arrival meant the event had a very large field, which had a significant impact on the running of the carnival. A total of 234 athletes were registered for competition and 14 clubs took part.
Red Beach retained the Owen Chapman Cup, notching up 231 points to claim the trophy for the fifth consecutive time. Mairangi Bay (87) finished second with Ōrewa (55) in third spot. The host club also retained the Jubilee Trophy. The Candy Stripes Eliminator was the premier event on the programme, attracting 40 females and 55 males in separate events. Because of the Covid-19 lockdown, all the Northern Region’s surf carnivals were cancelled right up until Christmas, making the Owen Chapman the first fully-fledged surf carnival of the 2021-22 competition season in this region.