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Who’s the best surfer in Orange County? You decided. The annual Orange County Surfer of the Year Awards have got everyone’s trigger finger hot and bothered with an online poll that has fans voting for the best pro male and female, as well as the best male and female up-and-comer. If you’re an avid fan of this blog it should come to no surprise that we’re pulling for Greg Long as best shortboarder and SCHS standout Marissa Shaw for brightest emerging star.
The Register salutes the best each year with the annual Orange County Surfer of the Year Awards. The online poll plugs into fans who vote for the best male and female professional rider – maybe a contestant in the worldwide Association of Surfing Professionals circuit or a lone wolf seeking out the biggest waves wherever they form in the oceans of the earth. A prize goes to the best of the longboarders who cruise the waves in their big boards, keeping alive the “hang ten” tradition of their zinc-nose slathered forefathers and mothers. The awards also honor the next wave of top surfers – the up and coming boys and girls who surf for the fun of it or for their high school or surf team spirit, with perhaps an eye to one day taking on the Kelly Slaters, Andy Irons and Layne Beachleys of the world.
Fans, vote early and often. The last waves of votes will hit the ballot at midnight on July 9. Then the horn blows. The excitement peaks during the U.S. Open of Surfing at Huntington Beach, where the awards ceremony will be held at the Walk of Fame at Jack’s Surfboards on July 23.
Last Friday evening saw the end of an incredible season of historic wins and personal bests as San Clemente High honored their 2009 varsity and junior varsity surfing teams. Held at the Surfing Heritage Museum, the awards banquette included the athletes’ families and friends who came out in support of the teams’ strong and rich talent. Special recognition was given to the eight students who earned academic excellence by consistently mainitaining a 3.5 GPA or higher, further proving their bright futures in and out of the water.
Swell.com also received special acknowledgement for their committed sponsorship and resourcefullness in promoting individual team members.
Additional photos after the jump.
The Orange County Regional Championships, the seventh stop of the 2009 Red Bull Riders Cup season, took place this week in sunny, albeit “small” conditions. This leg saw Orange County’s best high school surfers battle it out in a series of close games. Participating high schools included San Clemente High, Newport Harbor High, Edison High, and Huntington Beach High.
In 1- to 2-foot surf at best, the SCHS team fought fiercely in some of the worst conditions they’ve had to compete in the entire year. Surfing against the local favorites of Huntington Beach, the SCHS team was plagued with high tides and drastic lulls. The event did see some highlights for the team as Dane and Patrick Gudauskas, WQS warriors and SCHS alumni, came down to root the team on and make sure the boys were focused. Dane gave an incredible speech to the team leading into the third quarter of the game.