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Adaptive Surfing Championships hailed a “huge success”

Organisers of the first ever Welsh Adaptive Surfing Championships have hailed the two-day event a “huge success”.

Competitors from all over the world, including Japan, Hawaii, South Africa, Brazil, USA, Denmark and France, joined the UK’s best adaptive surfers in taking part.

The event, held at Adventure Parc Snowdonia, included two current world champions and others who are aiming for medals at the next world championships later this year.

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Elissa Thursfield, principal organiser and a director at North Wales-based solicitors Gamlins Law, said: “The feedback we have received from competitors, their families and spectators has been fantastic and the event now joins a prestigious world circuit which includes locations such as Bali and Hawaii.

“Adventure Parc Snowdonia is a world-class facility which proved a draw for some of the best competitors from across the globe.”

The athletes taking part compete with a range of disabilities including multiple limb amputations.

There were three categories: AS1 (surfers who are able to stand with or without prosthesis), AS2 (surfers who kneel) and AS4 (prone surfers).

Adaptive surfers Llywelyn Williams, from North Wales, with Australian champion Mark Mono Stuart

Welsh surfers Llywelyn Williams, from Abersoch, placed 2nd in the AS2 and 14-year-old Ethan Jolosa, from Monmouthshire, placed 3rd in the AS4.

Llywelyn, who lost his leg after a skateboarding accident, is a member of the organising committee who brought the event to North Wales.

He said: “Surfing is in the blood of so many people living in Wales. I grew up surfing at local beaches like Porth Ceiriad and Porth Neigwl.

“I always wanted to see a Wales stop on the adaptive surf circuit, but the uncertainty of waves and unreliable weather was always a limiting factor. On top of that, access to beaches can be difficult for adaptive surfers.

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“That changed when Adventure Parc Snowdonia launched its world-first inland waves. It ticks all the boxes for us: guaranteed surf, fantastic food and accommodation, and world-class facilities in the most beautiful location.”

The event, held last weekend, was sponsored by Abersoch Land & Sea.

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