The wind was light onshore and the waves were fairly tricky as the athletes in the Oakley X-Over headed out for the final leg in this 3-discipline ‘cross-over’ challenge at Lower Point, Jeffreys Bay. With many of the athletes being very inexperienced surfers, the waves proved to be a bit more challenging than anticipated.
The event organisers utilized jetskies to get the contestants out to the backline, as well as assist them onto waves, which helped everyone with their wave count.
Plettenberg Bay goofyfooter Wihann Kotze used his knowledge of Lookout to get the best waves out there. “It was very similar to onshore Lookout out there,” he said. His performance was enough for him to secure the win in the surfing event, ahead of Greg Minnaar and Kevin Evans.
“It’s my favourite event of the year,” said second placed Greg Minnaar. “I had two killer waves in the beginning, but towards the end I was cramping, so I was just wobbling like a jellyfish.”
Wihann, who won his slot into the event via the Social Media competition, also found the conditions quite challenging. “It was hard work, and I tried to catch as many waves as I could.”
John Smit was another athlete who stood out in the surf event, showing determination in his heat, and catching a multitude of waves, including one of the bigger waves of the day.
Oakley X-Over defending champion Butch James didn’t finish in the top three in the surfing contest, but had a good event either way. “It was hard work out there,” said Butch after the event. “It was good fun and good banter with the boys, but I don’t think I did enough to win the event again.”
1. Wihann Kotze
2. Greg Minnaar
3. Kevin Evans
Then it was time to add up the scores over the two days and three events – golf, mountain biking and surfing – that made up the entire challenge, and see who was going to emerge as the Oakley X-Over 2015 winner.
After the scorecards were tallied, and all the numbers double-checked, the Plettenberg Wildcard Wihann Kotze was named as the Oakley X-Over 2015 Champion. Second place went to Kevin Evans, and last year’s X-Over champion Butch James was in third.
“It was another great event this year, and we’re looking forward to a bigger and better event next year” said Oakley Sports Marketing Manager and X-Over founder Seth Hulley. “It’s such a special event, and there is such a good vibe throughout the tournament. We look forward to working with the JBay Winterfest again next year.”