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SUN­SHINE COAST TEEN SURF TAL­ENT HOLLY WILLIAMS IS PRE­PARED TO TAKE ON SOME OF THE COUN­TRY’S BEST AT THE WEEK­END’S CHAM­PI­ONSHIP SE­RIES

Life & Style Weekend - - MAGAZINE | WELCOME - Words: Sarah Diony­sius

When you grow up close to the shores of the Coast’s most pris­tine beaches, it’s lit­tle sur­prise that you would take up surfing as a hobby. How­ever, Bud­dina teenager Holly Williams was de­ter­mined to en­sure her love for the sport would take her fur­ther than just that. Holly was catch­ing her first waves at the ten­der age of three and by the time she was seven she was tak­ing part in her first surfing com­pe­ti­tion. The now 16-year-old has well and truly caught the surfing bug, get­ting out to the ocean at ev­ery avail­able op­por­tu­nity. “I have al­ways lived on the Sun­shine Coast and it’s just such a beau­ti­ful place and I love surfing here,” she said. “I grew up with two brothers who surfed and my dad surfed so it was just some­thing that I got in to from an early age.” Holly has been named a “strong con­tender” in this week­end’s 2019 Queensland Cham­pi­onship Cir­cuit se­ries event, the Sun­shine Coast Pro. She said she was ex­cited to com­pete in her home­town af­ter surfing well at the an­nual

MP Clas­sic a lit­tle more than a week ago – the first event of the QCC se­ries. “I’m def­i­nitely keen for this week­end, hope­fully, we get some waves,” she said. “Hope­fully I can carry some mo­men­tum from the MP Clas­sic a cou­ple of weeks ago into this event. “I think be­ing on my home turf is a great ad­van­tage, it al­ways is.” Holly said it was the first time she had com­peted in an open women’s com­pe­ti­tion and she looked for­ward to see­ing the tal­ent that was out there. “I love surfing in all the QCC events,” she said. “We get to surf with the best women in Queensland, so it pushes my surfing a lot. Hav­ing the prize money is great as well. “It’s great we have the women’s di­vi­sion now as well. There are so many good fe­male surfers com­ing up and this is an­other good event for them to get a re­sult at.” Holly said she had no­ticed a sig­nif­i­cant in­crease in fe­males tak­ing part in the sport since she had been com­pet­ing in surfing com­pe­ti­tions. “There are so many great girls com­ing out of the Sun­shine Coast,” she said. “There has def­i­nitely been a big in­crease in women com­pet­ing from when I first started, which is great to see. “It’s great com­pet­ing and get­ting to know the other girls and see all of the tal­ent that is out there.” Even though Holly was still study­ing at school, she said she would al­ways find time for surfing. “It is stress­ful but it is def­i­nitely worth it and I can cope with the ex­tra chal­lenge,’ she said. “I def­i­nitely want to make a ca­reer out of surfing so I think what I’m putting in now will be worth it.” Holly said one of the best as­pects of the sport was the con­nec­tions she made along the way. “I love the so­cial side of it and meet­ing peo­ple from across the coun­try and around the world,” she said. “There’s no bet­ter feel­ing than be­ing out in the wa­ter.” Holly will be among some of the coun­try’s best surfers tak­ing part in the QCC com­pe­ti­tion, which runs across this week­end. Surfers will be go­ing head-to-head in open male and open fe­male di­vi­sions to gain se­ries rat­ings points to­ward the ti­tle of top open surfer in Queensland. The long-range fore­cast shows a 5-6ft south-south­east swell ar­riv­ing for the week­end, along with mod­er­ate south-east­erly winds. Com­peti­tors and spec­ta­tors are en­cour­aged to call the Surfing Queensland event hotline on 3030 6388 from 6.30am each morn­ing of the event for a con­firmed lo­ca­tion and start time. The three-event se­ries will wrap up with the Al­ley Clas­sic at Cur­rumbin on June 29 to 30. Based on the re­sults from the three-event se­ries, the top four men’s and top four women’s 2019 QCC com­peti­tors will go on to rep­re­sent Queensland at the 2019 Aus­tralian Ti­tles.

For more in­for­ma­tion about the week­end’s event and the 2019 QCC se­ries visit https://www.surfin­gaus­tralia.com or the Face­book page www.face­book.com/ surf­in­gqueens­land­inc.

PHOTO: CON­TRIB­UTED

Coast surfer Holly Williams will be com­pet­ing at the week­end's 2019 Queensland Cham­pi­onship Cir­cuit se­ries event, the Sun­shine Coast Pro.

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