(Ponta d’Ouro, Mozambique) The beauty of the Mozambiquan coast is truly inspirational as the twelve invited surfers to the Roxy Invitational discovered today. Waking up to find tiny waves running down the length of the Ponta d’Ouro sandbank, several of the ladies opted for an early morning surf while a smaller crew went snorkeling on the reefs inside the bay.
While the surfers on the outside - among them Heather Clark (Port Shepstone), Tasha Mentasti (Durban), and Canelle Bullard (Reunion) – enjoyed the long walls of Ponta, Sarah Baum and Danielle le Roux (both Durban) inflated some lilos and had some fun in the tiny shorebreak, much to the amusement of the crowd on the beach.
As the tide filled the bay Baum and Faye Zoetmulder grabbed some snorkeling gear and began exploring the reefs inside the Ponta bay while the other invitees enjoyed a game of one-bounce on the beach. A short while later Baum and Zoetmulder returned to shore, disappointed at the number of bottles littering the reefs, and a spontaneous decision was made by the surfers to take advantage of the flat surf and embark on a clean-up mission.
“It really was heart-breaking to see how many bottles had been dumped on the reef,” said Port Elizabeth surfer Zoetmulder, “and when we told the other girls about it they immediately wanted to do something about it.”
After a quick discussion with the owners of Dolphin Encounters, snorkeling gear was secured for all of the girls and en masse they took to the tranquil waters of Ponta to do their bit for the environment.
The next hour was spent moving along the reef picking up bottles and other pieces of litter in a noble effort to clean up this pristine piece of untouched Africa. Upon returning to shore the bottles and other bits of rubbish collected were taken to a nearby dump to be properly disposed of, and the surfers enjoyed the rest of the day taking in the splendor and beauty of the day.
“Part of Roxy’s brand ethos is to maintain and preserve the incredible resource that our oceans are,” said Roxy marketing assistant Tamara Westbrook. “The biodiversity of our oceans and reef ecosystems in particular are in such a delicate balance, and we as surfers truly respect this balance and endeavour to do all we can to protect and sustain it.”
The Roxy Invitational is one of South African surfing's most popular events, and will see ten of South Africa's top female surfers and two surfers from Reunion compete for R15,000 in prize money and the illustrious title.
The Roxy Invitational has a one week waiting period and will be contested in the best possible conditions at Ponta d'Ouro between 4 and 11 May. At this stage the forecast is looking most promising for the competition to take place on either Friday 8 May, or Saturday 9 May, but as guru surf forecaster Steve Pike keeps the contest directors informed so decisions will be made.
The official Roxy Invitational website http://www.roxy.co.za/invitational has been updated with the invited surfers' profiles and also offers 2008 event pics, video and news. As the event now commences so the site will be updated daily with blogs, latest news and fresh images.
The Roxy Invitational is presented by Saltwater Girl Magazine, in association with Virgin Mobile and Resolution.
List of 2009 Roxy Invitational Invitees:
Alice McGregor (East London)
Bianca Buitendag (George)
Canelle Bulard (Reunion)
Faye Zoetmulder (Port Elizabeth)
Heather Clark (Port Shepstone)
Johanne Defay (Reunion)
Kirsty Delport (Durban)
Nikita Robb (East London)
Sarah Baum (Durban)
Tanika Hoffman (Cape Town)
Tarryn Chudleigh (Cape Town)
Tasha Mentasti (Durban)