The following article was written by Hawaiian Kā’eo Awana. The photographs were captured by local photographer Philip Kitamura. Thanks to Sean Enoka and the boys for their collaboration.


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Mākaha beach bared 5-6’ waves (Hawaiian scale), or 10-12ʻ faces on the day of the Mākaha Bodysurfing Classic. The waves broke from the outside point and marched into the backwash infested shorebreak. The expressions on each competitor varied from pale intimidation to ragged anticipation to anywhere in between. During check-ins, two ski’s were launched from the north end of the bay. Jet skis are a typical supplement for Mākaha lifeguards, except these weren’t lifeguard skis. To much of everyone’s excitement, the Hawaiian Water Patrol was present to ensure everyone safety. Furthermore, they would be providing assistance during heats to get competitors zoomed back out the point after catching waves. This was a pivotal moment for bodysurfing in Hawaiʻi. An average Saturday morning at Mākaha has 50+ people at the lineup with every type of surf craft under the sun. Competitors were not only able to bodysurf Mākaha at 6’ with 5 other people, but also with jet-ski assist. How can you put a price tag on this experience? With the sun peaking above the Waiʻanae mountain range, the air was buzzing with excitement.

The best in the business - Hawaiian Water Patrol gearing up for the day

The best in the business – Hawaiian Water Patrol gearing up for the day

Paipo Division- Paipo boards are typically wooden boards that take on various shapes and sizes, and have no leash. The word paipo derives from the traditional name of papa paepoʻo, which loosely translates to “board to catch waves head first.” Traditional papa paepoʻo riding looks more like bodysurfing than bodyboarding.

Final Results:

  1. Duane Desoto
  2. Ben Severson
  3. Matt Solomon
  4. Sean Enoka
  5. Wareen Hoʻohuli
  6. Makani Christiansen

 

Mens Open Handboard – Handboard divisions required some type of handboard device. Handboard types ranged from daughter’s slippers to Kaha Nalu Bulaboards.

Handboard Final Results:

  1. Mark Cunningham
  2. Kaleo Garlasa
  3. Thoman VanMelum
  4. Kealiʻi Punley
  5. Don King
  6. Greg Hense

Women’s Open Handboard

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Women’s Open Handboard Results:

  1. Sonja Du Plessis
  2. Pua Nawi
  3. Nalu Puʻu
  4. Maria Remos
  5. Kyla Lozis
  6. Carla Lewis
  7. Makenzie Arita
  8. Kehau Kim

Tandem Bodysurfing – The tandem division required two partners to be riding a wave at the same time to be judged.

Don King and Mark Cunningham

Don King and Mark Cunningham

Tandem Final Results:

  1. Mark Cunningham & Don King
  2. Duane Desoto & Keanuenue Desoto
  3. Kanealiʻi Wilcox & Kāʻeo Awana
  4. Kanekoa Crabbe &  Kanealiʻi Barrack
  5. Makani Christenson & Hiram Pukahi
  6. Matt Solomon & Sonja Du Plessis
  7. Joel Badina & Kalani Lattanci
  8. Kai Santos & Henrique Postilli

Womens Open

Women’s Final Results:

  1. Jonja Du Plessis
  2. Kim Kehaulani
  3. Carla Lewis
  4. Makenzie Arita
  5. Chelsie Henry
  6. Chris Ann Severson

Mens 50 & over

  1. Mark Cunningham
  2. Don King
  3. Ben Severson
  4. Walter Rodby
  5. Jon Parrish
  6. Chris Gardner
  7. Mike Worper
  8. Pete Rea

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Mens 41-49

  1. Greg Hense
  2. Harley Holt
  3. Peter Westbrook
  4. Josh Marvit
  5. Brian Kanealiʻi
  6. Allen Buchanan
  7. Eric Wahilani
  8. Aaron Kim
  9. Pat Bryon

IMG_3079Men’s 31-40 Resutls:

  1. Matt Solomon
  2. Kanekoa Crabbe
  3. Sean Enoka
  4. Kehau Kukawi
  5. Lohiau Cofran
  6. Nick Youngleson

 

Mens 21-30

 

Results:

  1. Kanealiʻi Wilcox
  2. Joel Badina
  3. Kāʻeo Awana
  4. Kyle Mensching
  5. Malii Laigo
  6. Dylan Smith

 

Mens 20 & under

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Finalists

Kealiʻi Punley

Kealiʻi Punley

20 and under Restults:

  1. Kealiʻi Punley
  2. Taylor Char
  3. Nao
  4. Pono Garlasa
  5. Josh Abilla

People who do not bodysurf often ask what the prizes are for winning a bodysurfing contest in Hawaiʻi. They expect to hear of lavish prizes, brand sponsorships, and cash that are commonly associated with the surfing industry. Most are shocked to hear that a trophy, fins, and clothing gear are typical bodysurfing contest prizes. To Hawaiʻi bodysurfers, contests serve as platform to gather bodysurfers to share the stoke of waveriding together rather than glory, fame, and riches. At these contests bodysurfers are able to reacquaint themselves with their friends, families, and meet fellow torpedo people from around the world. This is the ultimate prize of the contest; everything else is an added bonus. Contests naturally reveal winners and losers, but that is lost in the aloha that bodysurfers share with each other in Hawaiʻi bodysurfing contests. The first annual Mākaha Bodysurfing Classic was a success and raised the bar for bodysurfing contests.

 

Bodysurfing yarns woven 'tween crest & trough