RIVAS, Nicaragua — Seven Regional Champion surf shop teams from around the U.S. traveled to Nicaragua to compete in the 2017 Oakley Surf Shop Challenge National Championships on Thursday, October 26th. Four-to-six foot surf welcomed competitors at Playa Colorado, where Sunrise Surf Shop became five-time National Champions.
Heat One featured 7th Street Surf Shop (NE), Pacific Wave (NW) and Sweetwater (MA) kicking off competition, with 7th Street coming out swinging and posting an 27.46 heat total. Heat Two was a scoring frenzy as Sunrise posted a heat-high of 33.87, Huntington Surf and Sport (HSS) with a 33.01, T&C Surf posting a 30.26, and Sun Diego a 21.97.
Sunrise Surf Shop, defending National Champions HSS, and T&C Surf advanced to the Final, while the other four teams battled it out in the repechage for the last spot in the final, where Sweetwater advanced.
Sunrise was on a mission to upset the defending champions, but HSS wasn't letting them off easy. Shop rider Tristan Thompson burst out of the gates with 6.90-score, while older brother Cody Thompson took to the air and posted a 9.60. HSS responded with a solid 8.17-score from Brett Simpson and an 8.87 from Brad Ettinger. Sunrise's Evan Thompson secured the victory with an 8.6, as Sunrise deafeated HSS by a final score of 38.17 to 37.10.
"This was the closest National Championships we've been a part of," said Evan Thompson of Sunrise Surf Shop. "Every shop is stacked and was surfing really well in and out of the competition. We were really nervous during the Final competing against all the teams, but especially against [HSS'] Brett Simpson and Brad Ettinger. We're stoked to take home the win back to Jacksonville."
Sunrise Surf Shop: Cody Thompson, Evan Thompson, Tristan Thompson, Garret Carmichael
1st: Sunrise Surf Shop- 38.18
2nd: Huntington Surf & Sport- 37.10
3rd: Sweetwater Surf Shop- 17.9
4th: T&C Surf- 16.77