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Tough day for locals at surfing nationals

NO local surfers remain in the New Zealand Surfing Nationals' open shortboard divisions after Asia Braithwaite was eliminated from the women's side of the draw.

With no male surfers in the open division, Braithwaite was the solitary Gisborne Boardriders Club representative holding out in the women's division before she was bundled out yesterday in the quarter-finals.

A tough heat and tricky conditions saw her unable to find the waves she needed, having to settle for fourth place with a 5.8 total in a low scoring heat where no competitor made over 10-points from their two rides. It meant she finished in the top 32 female surfers nationally — her best finish so far. Braithwaite was also knocked out of the under-18 division in earlier rounds.

Her father, Patrick (Magoo) Braithwaite, has made the finals of the over-45 division. He won his semifinal in convincing style with the highest heat total of the remaining competitors, 14.7.

He was eliminated in the semifinals of the o40 division, with a 7.4 heat total.

Sean Hovell was eliminated from his o35 semifinal, with a 7.67 heat total.

Competing today were Stella Smith in the women's longboard, Bonnie Lynch in the u14 girls' division, Asia Braithwaite in the junior girls' longboard semifinals, Hovell in the stand-up paddleboard semifinals and Geordie Sawyer in the longboard and u18 longboard semifinals.