Reigning Queensland Champion Rebecca Oakley has trumped some of Australia’s hottest female surfers to win the open women’s division of the Billabong Girls Spring Classic at Duranbah Beach. Stop number 2 of 3 on the prestigious Billabong Queensland Surf Series (QSS), the prestigious all-female tournament boasted a 60-strong field along with $1,500 in prize money.
19-year-old Oakley proved unstoppable in the challenging wind-affected 2-3ft beach break conditions defeating Sheridan Shields, Airini Mason and Courtney Bell in the 25-minute final.
Showing no signs of nerves, the Sunshine Coaster kept her dreams of securing back-to-back Queensland open women’s crowns alive, netting her first QSS victory for 2007. What’s more, Oakley is one step closer to jagging a wildcard into the trials of the only WCT event on the Gold Coast in 2008.
“I’m over the moon,” said Oakley. “I’ve haven’t really had the year I was expecting, so it feels great to get a win under my belt. My main goal this year is to secure the overall QSS title so I can get another shot at the world tour trials at Snapper Rocks. I feel like I’m halfway to accomplishing that.”
In what proved to be a one-sided affair, it was Oakley who took an early lead in the 25–minute final, snaring a 5.83 to leave her foes needing high scores for victory. The exciting goofy foot put the result beyond doubt, unleashing a series of innovative forehand maneouvres to net a heat high 6.33 for victory.
Final scores: Oakley 12.16, Shields 8.93, Mason 7.57 and Bell 5.57. With only one event remaining in this year’s series, Shield’s runner-up placing leaves the door wide open for Oakley to peg back her ratings lead. Leaving Durnabah, Shield sits in the numero-uno position on 1860-points, over 300 points clear of Oakley in second.
Meanwhile, Kiwi sensation Paige Hareb upstaged her Australian rivals easily defeating Airini Mason, Oakley and Bridey McNeven (Tugun, QLD) to win the under 21 girl’s division. Surfing young guns Amiya Doyle (Coolangatta) and Elle Jean-Coffey (Crescent Head, NSW) both walked away with wins in the under 14 and under 16 divisions respectively while Sunshine beach surfer Brianna Lenton won the under 18 division.
Southport surfer Mandy Roberts secured victory in the Masters (Over 35) division, while Amy Alexander upset the applecart defeating Roberts for victory in the Seniors (Over 28) division. The Billabong Girls Spring Classic finalised with the finals of the open women’s division as well as amateur divisions from the under 14’s through to masters (over 35).
The Billabong Spring Classic ran on Saturday 22nd September, 2007 and was the second event of the 2007 Billabong Queensland Surf Series (QSS). he all-female series is the richest open women’s circuit in Australia. With three events slotted in, the Billabong Queensland Surf Series (QSS) boasts $15,000 prize money and a chance to tackle the world’s best surfers.
The series winner of the ’07 open women’s division will receive a wildcard into the trials on the only WCT event on the Gold Coast in 2008. The third and final Billabong QSS event, the Billabong Girls Summer Classic, will be held at the Gold Coast on the 3rd November, 2007.
The Billabong Girls Spring Classic is proudly supported by Vodafone and Surfing Queensland.