O'Neil British Surf Championships 2007 Results

Written by: Press Release

Submitted: 16 October 2007

With some of the best conditions ever witnessed for a contest on UK shores, the O'Neill British Open Championships this weekend set the waves alight with some phenomenal surfing in 4 – 8 foot, clean waves. Hundreds of people gathered on Fistral Beach, Newquay, to witness a showcase of British surfing talent as the sea offered up the perfect playground for the event. One of the competitions biggest ever entry of riders showed that, given the waves, Britain's top talent is right up there with the world's best. Riders from all over the country competed, but it Newquay's own Mark 'Egor' Harris who took the prestigious Open title.

Egor on his winning wave, Fistral Beach

Egor Harris (by Geoff Tydemann)

Mark 'Egor' Harris Blasts Into the Top Spot as British Champion

The Open Final hit the water on Sunday afternoon with high tide fast approaching, and for the first few minutes only Mark Harris was alive to the changing conditions. Before any of his opponents had found a good wave, he'd torn apart a series of long right-handers, his fluid, powerful style well suited to the overhead waves. Reuben Pearce made a late surge, but it was not enough to deny Harris a popular victory. Ben Baird couldn't match the awesome display of power surfing that had earlier won him the Senior Final over defending champ Gabe Davies from Newcastle, and finished third. Alan Stokes, recently back from injury, was fourth. Mark said, "I'm so, so stoked to be the British Champion! It's a title I've always wanted and to do it on my home break is even better. The level of surfing this weekend has been amazing - I had hard heats from round one. In the final I got a good start and some strong waves came my way. I just went for it and made it happen. I'm going to be surfing in the UK for the next month or so then I'm going off somewhere hot to surf and train for next year, so this has been an amazing boost."

Egor Harris and women's champion Beth Mason

Egor & Beth Mason (by Ralph Rutter)

Beth Mason Solidifies Her Reputation as Britain's Number One

In the Women's division, 17 year old Beth Mason from Swansea took her second title in a row with a display of top to bottom surfing that solidified her reputation as Britain's number one.

Bethan commented, "I'm really happy to have retained my title as it means so much to me. I worked hard in the final to look for the biggest set waves and put in some steady turns and it obviously paid off. The waves this weekend have been awesome and I will be competing at the British Juniors in Widemouth next weekend and hope that the waves will be just as good there. It would be awesome to win that title as well and have both at once, but we'll wait and see..." Also showing phenomenal form, Jed Stone took the Veteran title for the 8th time. Jed is now hoping to be chosen to represent Britain at the World Surfing Games in the Veteran's division later this year. He said, "This year's Championships has been brilliant. I've been surfing for a long time and these waves have honestly been the best ever for the contest. I was having a blast in the semi's and it was as if someone was looking down on us - the water was so glassy. I'm absolutely stoked."

A highly entertaining Masters Final saw Lee Bartlett taking the title for 1st time, taking his total haul of British titles to seven (having recently won the Seniors twice and the Open four times in a row back in the nineties). But he had to resist a valiant challenge from Anglo South African Cullum Murrell, who pushed Bartlett to the wire despite tearing ankle ligaments on his first wave.

Karen Walton, National Director of the BSA said, "This weekend's O'Neill British Championships have been nothing short of brilliant. The conditions have been ideal for Britain's best surfers to show off their skills and the level of surfing has been amazing at every level, so massive congratulations to everyone who competed. The atmosphere throughout the two days was great, with lots of local support. I'd like to say a big thank you to the sponsors, O'Neill and Thule, the judges, competitors, spectators and the R.N.LI. for making it all possible."

Results:

Open

1. Mark Harris

2. Reubin Pearce

3. Ben Baird

4. Alan Stokes

Women

1. Beth Mason

2. Holly Donnelly

3. Karma Worthington

4. Kathleen Spears

Senior

1. Ben Baird

2. Gabe Davies

3. Lee Bartlett

4. Jamie Owen

Masters

1. Lee Bartlett

2. Callum Murrell

3. Tony Good

4. Jed Stone

Veterans

1. Jed Stone

2. Gary Collins

3. Colin Bright

4. Gwyn Bright

5. Laurence Couch