A chat with the Port Stephens District Bodyboarders president Chad Pisani about the upcoming Boxfest contest in Nelson Bay.
What are the details for the upcoming Boxfest comp?
Box-Fest is an annual Bodyboarding Competition run by Port Stephens District Bodyboarders (Port Stephens local bodyboard club).
This year the event will have a 3 day window – 11th, 12th & 13th March. The event is held at Box Beach, Shoal Bay, in New South Wales. There are 9 divisions including the introduction of the ‘Shoal Bay Country Club Boxy Elite Division’ for the first time this year.
The event has a professional judging panel which is run by the head judge, Craig Hadden. There will be around 130 competitors and around 60 heats run during the event.
What was the inspiration behind the creation of the ‘ Elite’ division?
The new ‘Shoal Bay Country Club Boxy Elite Division’ is the new showpiece of Box-Fest. There will be 32 spots for competitors. Almost immediately after last year’s event discussions started between myself, Dallas Singer & John Cruickshank on how we could improve the event. The main idea of the Elite division is to separate the higher level of sponsored riders etc. and put them into their own division.
This new division will have the only prize money for the event where 1st place will receive 2k and 2nd, 3rd and 4th will receive a lesser amount.
Other divisions will receive trophies and prizes for top 4 positions. The Open Men’s Division has been replaced this year with the Men’s 18 to 35 years Division which has been very popular and the first division to fill this year in less then a week. After just 1 week of the entries being open 19 of 32 spost in Boxy Elite Division have already been filled and the standard is already high!
How have you been able to pull together such solid sponsorship for the event?
We have been lucky to have Port Stephens Toyota (our major sponsor) & Shoal Bay Country Club (our Boxy Elite Division sponsor) on board to support Box-Fest for the past 3 years. Our other standout sponsor is D5 Bodyboard Shop who will be sponsoring the Grommets Division, Cadets Division & Drop Knee Division this year.
D5 has supported our club from the very beginning and put a huge amount back into bodyboarding for not only our club, but several others. Without the support of our sponsors events like Box-Fest simply would not exist.
How important are these types of events for the grassroots of the sport in Australia?
Events like Box-Fest are very important for bodyboarding in Australia. We really need to encourage the younger generation to try bodyboarding and many will certainly take it up and fall in love with it like we all have!
Events like Box-Fest encourage younger riders to get involved and compete as well as see the top riders in action at the same event. There are a few similar events now in NSW which are becoming regular on the calendar which is very encouraging for the grassroots of bodyboarding.
Who are the names to look out for in the Elite division?
The usual suspects being Dallas Singer & John Cruikshank are definitely ones to watch and are arguably favorites for the event. Also, Josh Kirkman & Michael Ostler would be ones to watch too!
Several locals are definitely a shot of taking the crown, those being past champion Kane Brewer, Nathan Price and Hayden Pisani. We also have some young guns enter, Anthony Miller & Ryan Hill-Smith which will be interesting to see how they go against the older riders!
Massive shout out to all our sponsors who support the event and to all the riders that enter! Without you all nothing would happen!
To enter the event simply follow the link: