Coming off the back of an exceptional 2016, local lass Shakira Westdorp is keen to do it all again this year.
We chat with the World Champion ahead of this weekend’s SUP State Surfing Titles to find out what tricks she has up her sleeve.
How do you feel about competing in your hometown this weekend?
It’s nice to compete at home. We’re lucky to have good waves here and it’s great that friends and family can come and watch.
The event location has yet to be decided, are there any local waves you prefer to surf?
The Alley is always pretty good for a SUP but I have been surfing over the border a lot lately and finding some fun uncrowded waves.
How do you think you’ll go this weekend?
I’m hoping to have a win. That’s always the goal, but there are a few young girls that just keep getting better and better that are hungry for a win. You can’t afford to make many mistakes.
Last year you took out gold at the Fiji ISA World Championships, how is this year shaping up compared that?
Yeah last year was pretty special. Hard work finally paid off. This year has been a bit of a slow start. I took some time off the SUP after Fiji and have found it hard to get motivated to get back on it. I think the internal pressure of last year finally got to me. I’ve been back on the SUP the last couple of weeks now and slowly getting the fire back.
How did you get into SUP surfing and what do you love most about it?
Some friends made one after visiting Hawaii 10 or so years ago and we all took turns on it over summer and had a ball. It was a pretty heavy massive board (nothing like what we ride today) but we all just had so much fun and the passion just went from there. I love the challenge, you can go anywhere (surf, lake, rivers) its taken me all over the world and I’ve met some amazing people along the way.
What do you have on for the rest of the year?
I’m off to WA on Wednesday for a comp at Rottnest Island. The swell looks pretty solid at this stage. It’s an awesome event, probably my favorite of the year. ISA world titles in Denmark, then an event in New York, back home for the Aussie titles then off to the Canary Islands for the last event in December.
Your favourite piece of life advice? Never give up!
You’re not a Gold Coast local if you haven’t… Skydived onto Coolangatta Beach
Being a Gold Coast local we have to ask for your favourites…
Restaurant: Too many good ones. I love going to different ones all the time.
Bar: Balter Brewery
Coffee Shop: Metro coffee, Broadbeach