Eastern University Games: Jake Sylvester Surfing
Home to an abundance of great beaches, surfing is one of Newcastle's most popular sports, with the local comp Surfest celebrating its 29th anniversary this year. We'll have a chance to highlight our skills in the surf at the Eastern University Games (EUG) with a number of UON athletes competing in the long and shortboard events. To further raise the surfing stakes, the Australian University Championships will be run concurrently with the EUG, attracting surfers from all over Australia. To mark the occasion, Newcastle City Council have set aside all of Newcastle's most popular surf beaches, with the competition beach chosen on the basis of the best breaks.
This year we will be looking to continue our climb up the EUG surfing ladder, following UON student, Demetrius Cooper's impressive silver medal in the Men's Shortboard at the 2013 Games in Wollongong. Being UON's only surfing competitor last year, Demetrius wowed crowds after catching a last minute wave amongst choppy conditions in the Final.
Our Gold Medal Chance
Jake Sylvester takes the reigns for UON this year, having surfed since he was a grom. The two-time Surfest Pro Junior Champion and Australasian Pro Junior Champion is in the second year of a teaching degree, and works part time as a teachers' aid. The 20 year old from Merewether currently sits 24th in the 2014 ASP Qualification Series rankings, after finishing 9th in the Burton Toyota Pro in February.
Jake, a natural footer, has carved it up with some of the most respected and talented surfers in the world, including Australia's Joel Parkinson and Matt Hoy. In addition to his surfing and study pursuits, Jake is also an ambassador for the Hunter Melanoma Foundation, and regularly speaks to primary school groups about the importance of staying safe in the sun.
With an explosive combination of snaps, cutbacks and aerials up his sleeve, Jake is definitely the EUG competitor to beat.
Competition Dates: 7am-4pm Monday 7 to Wednesday 9 July.
Location: TBC depending on swell.