Dylan Lightfoot Takes the Buffalo by the Horns

Dylan Lightfoot has out-surfed a selection of South African surfing royalty to take out the JBU Supertrials presented by RVCA at cooking 4-6 foot Supertubes. The win secures him a wildcard place in the J-Bay Open World Tour event which returns to Jeffreys Bay in July.

Lightfoot, a Jeffreys Bay local, topped the draw of 16 surfers by putting on a display of fast, vertical surfing and savvy barrel technique. The contest was all about barrel-riding and power-surfing between a field of J-Bay locals, South African veterans, representatives from the big wave contingent and juniors making waves on the international scene.

Sean ‘The Giant Killer’ Holmes has a reputation for taking down big names at Supertubes when the World Tour comes to town. Andy Irons, Kelly Slater, Corey Lopez and Occy on his title run of ’99 have all been beaten by Holmes at J-Bay. Today he was plagued with a sluggish first round heat and went down to Mikey February and local supergrom Matt McGillivray who clocked-up more tube time during the day than anyone else.

The return of J-Bay to the world tour is a shot in the arm for pro surfing. Are you excited?

Warren Dean; another J-Bay local and permanent fixture in the Supers line-up, took home the award for Barrel of the Day with a ridiculous double-tunnel that took him most of the way down the point and into the semi-finals. Alas, Mother Nature was unkind to him in the semis and he was knocked out after waiting most of the heat for an opening ride.

Ex-tour surfer Greg Emslie also had a shocker in the semis after showing everyone he’s still a fierce and committed competitor in round one. His first wave saw him free-fall from a ballsy floater onto the bricks and break his board. After a quick equipment change he returned to the line-up and treated fans to a demonstration of Supertubes mastery.

Other standouts included Matt Bromley who showed-off excellent barrel knowledge, Remi Peterson as one of only two goofy-footers in the draw matching the naturals tube for tube and 2013’s ISA open men’s champ Shaun Joubert who seemed to be having trouble with his pockets as he was dropping wallets all over the joint.

Conditions became tricky and wave selection was critical in the four-man final, but each surfer managed to secure some good scores. Capetonian Mikey February’s full-rotation alley-oop earned a few cheers from a crowd who were loudly supporting the two local finalists; Lightfoot and McGillivray.

The biggest applause for the day was saved for McGillivray’s triple-barrel screamer on his way to fourth place overall. Speed demon Dylan Lightfoot had been unstoppable all day and won a close final with February coming in second and Slade Prestwich in third.

“I am so stoked; this is a dream come true,” said Lightfoot after the event. “I have wanted to surf in the World Championship Tour (WCT) event in Jeffreys Bay since I was a kid and winning the JBU Supertrial has given me that opportunity.”

The waiting period for the J-Bay Open is July 10 to 21.

Pat O’Shea

Final results:
1. Dylan Lightfoot (JBay)
2. Mikey February (CT)
3. Slade Prestwich (DBN)
4. Matt McGillivray (JBay)