THE COMPETITION was fast and furious in Newquay over the weekend as the five-day surf extravaganza that is Boardmasters built to a climax.
One of Europe's biggest sport and music festivals saw the cream of the UK's surfers battle it out with a host of international names for some glory and seriously big money at beautiful Watergate Bay.
Peony Knight had another star turn in her 2013 season as she waltzed into the final of the women's division.
Mixing it with the big names seemed to hold no fears for the 15-year-old from Georgeham as she showed the kind of form that has earned her a spot in the Great Britain team.
The final saw her up against a pair of champions – 2013 English title winner Keisha Eyre and former British champ Sarah Beardmore.
In tricky onshore conditions Peony picked off a couple of decent scoring rides but could not catch the two older girls, although she was more than happy with third spot and the Pro Tour ranking points that come with it.
Croyde's Zak Lawton had a storming run in the three-star rated Davidoff Cool Water longboard division.
Surfing against an international field he rode with real confidence, mixing up the manoeuvres to make it to the semi-finals where he came up against 10 times European champion Ben Skinner.
"I'm really pleased with how well I did," said Zak.
"It was nice to have a proper big comp again.
The surf was pretty hard in typical summer waves and it seemed like the longboard heats coincided with the worst of the conditions but it was still fun.
"It was also a really good warm-up for the European Championships next month. "
Placing joint third was a great result for Zak and for once there was even a decent prize cheque to go with it – almost enough to cover five days in Newquay.
Taz Knight kicked off his Boardmasters campaign in style, landing himself on the front page of last Thursday's edition of The Times as he bust a frontside air in the opening round of the open division.
The category was as tough as it has been for years with riders of such a high calibre that an early exit was by no means a failure.
Taz fared better in the under-21 pro-junior division and worked hard to reach the quarter-finals where it looked as though he had done enough to progress.
The judges didn't agree and he slipped into third place by the slimmest of margins.
While Taz didn't progress as far as he might have hoped, the premiere of a short surf film featuring his exploits in Madeira earlier this year with friend Ed Smith put the smile back in his face.
Teazed, shot by Falmouth University film student Nell Gardez from Woolacombe, sees the guys exploring the coast of the mountainous island, surfing seriously heavy waves.
Madeira has been the big-wave training ground for the likes of local legends Ralph Freeman and Andrew Cotton and it looks like Taz might have been bitten by the big-wave bug.
On this evidence you can be assured he has got a bright future whatever waves he decides to tackle, but I'm pretty sure his mum would prefer it if he kept to the smaller stuff just to stop her fretting.
Watch the video and judge for yourself: vimeo.com/72030257
It's all back to Watergate again this weekend for the juniors for the finale of the Rip Curl Grom Search, presented by Posca, where two of North Devon's top young female surfers, and best friends, are in contention for a series win and the prize of entry to the European finals later this year.
Having placed first and second, Peony is tied in top spot while surfing buddy Flora Lawton, from Croyde, is in touching distance with two second places.
It is sure to be a nail-biting finish to an exciting series with plenty of Devon crew aiming for a final shot at a Grom Search division win.