By Lucas Farcy
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In France, it is not only on the Atlantic coast that we know how to surf the waves. By picking up their ticket for the French UNSS Surfing Championships (National School Sports Union), Lynette, Noa, Clement, Tom and Maxime prove it once again: the surfing world can also count on Mers-les-Bains (Sum).
College students will be Anglet (Pyrénées-Atlantiques) from May 22 to 25, 2023 to participate in a competition where nearly 200 young surfers are expected. The result of three years of work for Mers middle school students, who go into the water as part of the college’s sports section, with UNSS sessions and outside of class, directly at the Glisse Sensation Mers nautical club.
Four students in the waves
“It’s a great challenge to participate in this competition and it’s not easy to bring a team to this level”, explains Virgil Gogoisa physical education and sports teacher who supervises training with his colleague Artus Hansen. Three students of the team are in class of 3e and will therefore leave college next year. This year was the only possibility to bring this group to such a level.
In Anglet, four students will follow one another on the waves for a section that lasts 40 minutes in total. A jury the best two waves of each student, then the total of all passages (ie 8 marks) will give the result of the team.
Maxim, the 5the member of the team, makes the trip as an official: like all UNSS competitions, the judges and referees are students. In the same spirit, the surfers will be autonomous during the competition and will have to decide themselves on the strategies to put in place.
Meeting with other colleges
“We’re in a hurry to be there”, assures Tom, ready to do battle with the best young surfers in France. If the team does not aim for victory against sports sections of regions where surfing is the king of sports, especially on the Atlantic coast, she will be able to fly the colors of Mers-les-Bains. And for the students, surfing the waves of the southwest promises to be a life-changing experience. “It’s a source of pride to see them participate” assures the principal of Christophe Porquier middle school.
For this trip, the students also received support from the municipality of Mers-les-Bains, which notably provides a mini-bus. For all training sessions, the support of the Glisse sensation Mers and the advice of Vincent Desbonnetscoordinator of the municipality’s sports department, were also valuable supporters.
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