The Swanny Dukes Invitational Board Riding Competition – known as the Dukes Invitational – is a board riding tournament held at Swanbourne Beach anywhere between Doggies Reef at the foot of Grant Street and the Block House, 2.7km north of the Swanbourne Nedlands SLSC Patrol Tower. The event and its associated Club has been named after famed waterman Duke Kahanamoku.
Created in 2013, the Dukes Invitational is unique in that ocean swells need to reach a height deemed surfable on a weekend before the competition can be held.
Each year, financial members of the Dukes are invited to participate in the Opening Ceremony on the first Sunday of April. The competition holding period is between April 1st and the last day of October annually. Each day, surf conditions, ocean swells, and weather forecasts are monitored by Swanny’s most knowledgeable Experts, Legends, Meteorologists and Oceanographers, hereafter known as ELMO – along with the Contest Director that is selected at the Opening Ceremony. The Contest Director makes the decision as to whether to run the Dukes Invitational if the conditions are right.
Should the Dukes Invitational be called on for a morning, there will be an Official Call during the competition window, during which the participants have a 12 hour window to check in before the morning of the Dukes Invitational. Check in can take place via any means the Contest Director deems appropriate (for example facebook, SMS, email).
Participants will compete in a minimum of two 30 minute rounds – in the case of an infrequent swell the round duration may be extended at the discretion of the Contest Director. The competition window is generally from 07:00am to 5:00pm.
Up to six competitors can be in any one round, there is no limit to the number of waves caught, though only two of the competitor’s highest scores will be counted from any one round. Their four best scoring waves over two rounds will make up their total score.
A panel of judges will be engaged on the day of the Dukes Invitational to give scores.
Judges analyze the following major elements when scoring waves:
- Commitment and Degree of Difficulty
- Innovative and Progressive Manoeuvres
- Combination of Major Manoeuvres
- Variety of Manoeuvres
- Speed, Power and Flow
[ 0.0 – 1.9: Poor ] [ 2.0 – 3.9: Fair ] [ 4.0 – 5.9: Average ] [ 6.0 – 7.9: Good ] [ 8.0 – 10.0: Excellent ]
Participants are not allowed to use personal watercraft to tow themselves into the waves; they must paddle out into the waves entirely under their own power.
Participants are allowed to use a variety of paddle craft including malibus, racing mals, paddle boards, shortboards. The Contest Director has final say on what craft can be used. Rescue boards shall not be used. A competitor who breaks or damages a Swanbourne Nedlands SLSC craft shall be disqualified and sent the bill for cost of repairs.
Trophies are awarded for the following:
§ Best Overall Male
§ Best Overall Female
§ The Coveted Sweet Swanny Tube Award
§ Biggest Wave
§ Biggest Wipeout
If the minimum conditions are not met during the competition holding period, the Dukes Invitational is not held that year, and the process repeats itself the following April.
Swanny Bay calls the day!