Long-running Classic called off due to coronavirus
SURFING: While it was a tough decision, cancelling one of Australia’s longest-running longboard events was the right call, says Alex Mal Club president Kevin Annetts.
The 38th annual Winter Longboard Classic was set to host three days of action in June, but due to coronavirus concerns was called off by organisers this week.
Club president and life member Annetts said the decision was not made lightly.
“The best decision is always the hardest decision I suppose and that was to cancel it entirely,” he said.
“I know some surfing events that were scheduled in July in other parts of Australia that have been cancelled so we’re just doing the right thing and what needed to be done.”
The classic has plenty of history, first being held in 1982 and has since grown to be a hugely popular event that, along with elite longboard fields, also featured old mals (pre 1967 boards), loggers, eight-foot boards and retro single fin short boards.
It even won the Sunshine Coast Sport Federation’s event of the year for 2018.
It generally attracts more than 170 competitors over 12 divisions from juniors through to over-65s.
“It’s one of the longest running longboard classic surfing events in Australia without a doubt,” Annetts said.
“This event is very popular on the calendar and draws the community down to Alexandra Headland to watch all the competitors in different divisions.
“We had to make the decision (to cancel) to make sure that we adhered to policy and make sure that everyone’s safe.
“The last thing we want is anyone to get sick with what’s going on.”
Although it was called off, Annetts looked forward to competitive surfing returning to the water by year’s end and hoped to still run the club’s Old Mal Rally and Jack Boast junior longboard events scheduled later this year.