Dean takes Women’s Long Board Division
by Haley Watson
Historic City News was informed that St Augustine resident Jazmine Dean took first place in the Women’s Long Board Division at the 2012 Eastern Surfing Championship in Nags Head, on North Carolina’s Outer Banks yesterday.
Victory was sweet for 15-year-old Dean as she returned to Jeanette’s Pier this week, hoping to put to rest some unfinished business. Last year, a protest led to all of the finalists having their boards measured. The long board that Dean surfed throughout the season, measured less than one-inch short of standard. Despite leaving the water as the clear-cut winner, she forfeited her title over the technicality.
“After losing my title by inches last year, this win was especially rewarding,” Dean said. “I am working hard, and even gaining new sponsors. I am looking forward to getting on the ASP Women’s Long board tour and competing in as many Pro events as possible in the near future to raise money for college.”
Dean was among some 400 competitors in the annual contest, a staple of amateur and progressive surfing on the Eastern seaboard. Surfers must compete in six district level contests to qualify for the Regional competition. Those finalists are then invited to the Eastern Championships in Nags Head to vie for the East Coast Title.
Large, choppy swells brought difficult conditions on Wednesday, but would not stop Dean from ripping all day long. She found herself in the final, and, once again, was completely on fire. Her first wave was the highest score, an 8.5, and put her fellow three competitors in a situation needing two high scores with 5 minutes to go.
She has had success in Professional events as well. Just last month, Dean defended her title down in Cocoa Beach, winning the Women’s Pro long board for the second consecutive year in front of thousands of onlookers.
Dean started surfing only 3 years ago. She began just a few of months before her first contest; Tommy Tant 2010, held in Flagler Beach. She had such a great experience that she ended up falling in love with competitions and the whole “surf scene”.
“We surfed every series available, and all contests within 100 miles,” Jazmine’s father, Denny Dean said. “Her schedule’s slowing down a little now; but, no matter what she decides to do, her family is here to support her every step of the way, and we couldn’t be more proud.”