April 20 - 26, 2014: Issue 159

  50 Years of Girls at Bell's - Another Easter Tide to Consider

Nat Young, centre, with Kim McKenzie, Micha Mueller, Phyllis O'Donell [i.e. O'Donnell], Judy Trim, Carol Watts and Alison Cheyne at the Australian Surfing Championships, Sydney, 1972 -  by  John  Witzig,1944- Image No.: nla.pic-vn4473899, courtesy National Library of Australia.

 50 Years of Girls at Bell's - Another Easter Tide to Consider

How Many Girls Have Rung Bell’s Bell?

When almost three feet tall I paddled out at Clifton Beach, Tasmania – an open to Antarctica long stretch of sand about a half hour south of Hobart and noticed, while doing so, that all the full grown ‘men’ were paddling in.

‘Why are they going in?’ young fool wonders from her slip of a yellow plastic paddling board – the precursor of modern ‘boogie boards’… and then gazes up at the mountain of a wave suddenly towering over her.


I got in – a feat of pure concentration and guardian angelship, knowing if I came off or let go, that would be it – game over – and even though there were gazes of respect from all those ‘adults’ now on the shore (see full grown as opposed to not that tall yet), the friend I was visiting decided she better not tell her mum, and that went double for my parents. 

“They were talking about going out to get you – but then you came in – they’ve never seen anyone (meaning a girl) do that before” said friend whispered while shuffling me, clearly embarrassed, off the beach.

That was the mid 1970’s, and surfing as a lifestyle and industry was really taking off in Australia. Having grown up with old black and whites snapshots of dad on Palm Beach in the early 1950’s with a ‘plank’ almost five times his six ½ foot height, or being regaled about the Bell’s contest mum and dad attended in 1963 while pregnant with my older brother, it gradually dawned that they weren’t as old as they seemed and had probably even been young once. 

Although not ‘hippies’ there was something about Bell’s and surfing which to them, stood up for them, and allowed them, the next generation, to thumb their noses at all that 1950’s insidious and equally brazen ‘thou shalt be!’.

There was even, prior to all that bra burning, a touch of ‘girls too!’ about the whole scene and its voice.

So, where were all the girls’ reports on their contests, their waves? Where all the lists of their winnings that are equal to what the men received or receive? Why, when we look at ‘histories’ of Bell’s are there such scant records? Exhibitions like the September 2011 Surf City run by Sydney Living Museums demonstrated that there is a plethora of information out there, magazines now tattered are filled with profiles, but outside of these there isn’t enough accessible for and on the ladies – the female pioneers of this sport in Oz.

The first Australian girl to go surfing was on the Northern Beaches, as illustrated through the talk given by Bilgola SLS and Avalon SLS gentlemen David Lyall and Bob Head on The Arrival of The Mal - Isobel Letham at Freshwater. Surf clubs were the first to adopt the ‘toothpick’ variety of board for rescue work and ran contests prior to the advent of the ‘short’ board as Mal’s were described when they came along (kiddies: these are now known as ‘longboards’). Another lassIsma (sometimes spelt Esma) Amor is also credited with standing up on a surfboard a few years prior to that in the 1912-13 season of Manly LSC(Harris, Reg S, Heroes of the Surf, p53-54. 1959.).

Right: Isma, from newspaper cutting, title 'EXPERT PLANK SURFER'

Our research shows that as soon as surf bathing came along people getting struck with surfboard like devices featured in reports and letters to newspapers complained of the rising incidents of collisions – a problem that was never really solved until Mr Curlewis and flags with restricted surf zones became part of patrolled beaches.

The first surfing (‘short’ boards) contests women were included in as surfers outside the surf life saving movement were held in 1963 at Bondi (November) and won by Tweed girl Phyllis O’Donell with Warriewood lad Nat Young taking 1st. 

In April 1964 sixteen year-old Dorothy de Rooy won the open class women's surf-board riding championship of NSW and the following month capped this performance by winning her way into the world championship final for women surf-board riding against strong international competition.

This 1964 ‘1st World Championships’ at Manly Beach, (May 16 and 17), apart from being won by Bernard ‘Midget’ Farrelly in the men’s division, included women with 1st Phyllis O’Donell, again, an American lady, 2nd Linda Benson (USA) and 3rd Heather Nicholson.

But the first girl to surf in a contest at Bell’s on a surfboard didn’t occur until 1966, a mere 140 years or so after Mark Twain etched Polynesian women cavorting on paipo boards. The girl who won was Gail Couper, 18 years old, freckle faced with short dark curls, bursting with vitality. Gail went on to win Bells a record 10 times, possibly due to being a Lorne girl – about 46 kilometres south of Torquay, with access to some legendary surfing spots. Brian Singer, Lorne's first surfboard shop owner and a Rip Curl co-founder, also hails from Lorne, adding to Great Ocean Road’s surfing pedigree.

In the 1968 Bells Beach Contest Vivian Campbell added her name to that list. It was Gail, Gail, Gail, Gail, for a while after that, with Phyllis placing 2nd in 1969, until South African lass Margo Oberg came along (‘77and ’78). 

1970 it was a good year for girls surfing, Hawaiian sisters Martha and Anella Sunn were part of the contest at Bell’s while another in Queensland lists 10 founding sisters of the Australian women’s surfing. Bell’s 1970 was one day too big and the next day too small. 

Hawaiian surfers Anella Sunn, left, and her sister, Martha, are well prepared for the cold as they head for the surf at Bell's Beach, Victoria. The girls used the postponement of the titles yesterday as a chance to practise on the small surf which was running on the beach. ….Corky Carroll was suspended for allegedly using insulting and indecent language to a Torquay hotel proprietor and his wife. A meeting of international officials considered a written apology by Carroll early on Saturday morning and lifted the suspension. Poor surf mars World titles. (1970, May 4). The Canberra Times (ACT : 1926 - 1995), p. 14. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article110319300

Martha and Rell ‘Kapolioka'ehukai’ (Hawaiian for "heart of the sea,") Sunn are legendary in women’s surfing but Gail triumphed again. Australian girls Nola Shepherd and Judy Trim were also part of the home led contingent, with then world champion in women’s Margo Godfrey and Joyce Hoffman, Californians also on the beach. (The Age - May 6, 1970) 

1970 Australian Surfing Championships, Queensland, 1970: WOMEN 1st: Judy Trim, 2nd: Nola Shepherd 3rd: Phyllis O'Donnell , 4th: Lynn Stubbins , 5th: Judy Clements, 6th: Gail Couper , 7th: Judy Bohringer , 8th: Maureen Farrell , 9th: Leslie Howard, 10th: Micha Mueller – Ref.: Surf International Volume  3 Number 4 page 29. March 1970 

The Australian women pioneers in this sport, many of them teenagers when competing, all state they experienced hostility towards their choice to surf from those they encountered outside their home breaks and home crews during the 1970’s – part of this was the massive rise in popularity of the sport and competition for waves, but mostly it was an inherited disorder, as this quaint little report illustrates:

LAST STRAW FOR SIPPERS. THE Prime Minister, Mr Whitlam, doing a little campaigning in the NSW State elections, and former champion swimmer Linda McGill last Sunday helped weaken another antediluvian male bastion. The PM encountered Miss McGill at Coogee Beach, and, while he walked along the back of the beach, she gave him the full blast on some of the not-so-attractive local customs, one of which pertained to the "Sunday Morning Sippers Club".

The club occupies the top floor of the Surf Life Saving Club, and with the peculiar hangover of Australian colonial days, refuses to allow women entry; women wishing to have a Sunday-morning drink must do so on the beach. When Mr Whitlam went into the building and up to the Sippers' enclave, he was, followed by a grand retinue of photographers, journalists, ALP officials, and Miss McGill.

Gang Gang is told that the reaction of the drinking lot was one of abject horror. No one, however, dared to evict a lady who had arrived with the PM's party. And, to add salt to festering wounds, Miss McGill ensured that the odd photograph of her and the PM and the inner sanctum was taken for Monday's dailies. But if the sinking Sippers were mortified by the presence of one lady, it was only the beginning. The birds who have been hitherto banned to the beach are understood to be planning an invasion en masse before too long.  LAST STRAW FOR SIPPERS. (1973, November 15). The Canberra Times (ACT : 1926 - 1995), p. 3. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article131692260

You can’t imagine that women really wanted to drink on a Sunday morning- can you? No; it was something else they were stating. What this report also omits is apparent in another item when Linda was swimming the Channeland broke the record, in 1967:

Among friends who will swim with her in relays are Nick Whitlam, son of the Leader of the Opposition, Mr Gough Whitlam, former Olympic champion Ilsa Konrads, and David Milne Smith, of San Francisco. LINDA BEGINS SWIM. (1967, September 9). The Canberra Times (ACT : 1926 - 1995), p. 32. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article106976121

Linda had an often times controversial write up in media for many years during the 1960's, was banned from the Olympics, disqualified despite winning overseas swims, but triumphed in just keeping going, in trying over and over again.

There was also the drug and 'drop-out' counter culture label so quickly acquired, sometimes appropriately, to so many who adopted 'soul surfing' while opposing being sent to the Vietnam war. Some reports took this a little far in their inferring and ignorance, backed up by arrogance, couldn't recognise those who were well known to their peers:

The surf was so big at Bells Beach on Monday that the organisers of the champion -ships cancelled all the women's events, but spectators were treated to some breathtaking surfing by the men. One of the many spectators, left , caught plenty of attention himself with his colourful caftan, coupled with beard and flowing locks. His bright red velvet outfit was merely one of the many such attires to be seen among the international competitors. These spectators, some of whom had pitched tents on the beach and who intended to campout for the duration of the championships, had two obvious factors in common as they sat in the bleak conditions at Bells Beach on Monday. Besides their unquestioned devotion to the art of surfing, they appeared also to have plenty of hair among them. Saldivar wins. (1970, May 7). The Canberra Times (ACT : 1926 - 1995), p. 35. Retrieved fromhttp://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article110319889

Gail reigned until the advent of Margo Oberg in 1977 who reigned outside of the 1979 win by Hawaiian lass Lynne Boyer until the 1981 win by Linda Davoli. In 1982, the lady who later produced ‘Suurfer girl’ and was world champion that year, Debbie Beacham triumphed. The daughter of a navy pilot this, her upbringing could only lead her to fly over water!

Western Australia’s Helen Lambert won in 1982 and was up against not only the world’s best but Australia’s best in the form of Pam Burridge and Jenny Gill. These were the years of Jodie Cooper and Wendy Botha but Manly girl Toni Swayer, Prue Howarth and Simone Day were surfing at the Narrabeen contest in 1983.

Pam Burridge, despite competing for over a decade at Bells, and ‘flowing with it’ everywhere else in the world to become supreme flow champion, never succeeded in ringing the Bell.

1990 world champion: Burridge has competed at Bell's Beach since 1979 but the title continues to elude her. "I don't feel the same person here. Maybe it's psychological, maybe it's the cold water but I dread coming to Bell's because I know I will leave unhappy." Burridge had nothing but praise for the young Hawaiian after her defeat. "It was only a matter of time before Rochele (Gordines) made the finals of a main event and her win in the quarter finals shouldn't really be a shock to anyone," she said. "If the surf is big, she'll win the contest for sure because she's got guts and lots of Hawaiian experience." Gordines will meet her best friend and room-mate Neridah Falconer in the semi-finals today. Falconer, the number eight surfer in the world, caused the other shock result with a strong win over world champion Wendy Botha. SURFING. (1992, April 19). The Canberra Times (ACT : 1926 - 1995), p. 11. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article122410686

American Kim Mearing won twice during the 1980’s (’84 and ’88) as did the wonderful Freida Zamba (’85, ’86) with Western Australian surfer Jodie Cooper ringing the bell in 1987. South African born Wendy Botha won in 1989, as an Australian citizen, the second year she was also world surfing champion (Wendy won the coveted title four times – 1987, 1989, 1991, 1992).

During the 1990’s it was the Layne (Beachley; Manly- ‘94,’98, 99), Lisa (Anderson USA- 90, 92 ,95, 97) and Pauline (Menczer; Byron Bay - 91,93,96) show with these three owning the event, while in recent years it has become the Stephanie Gilmore and Sally Fitzgibbons show with a Hawaiian winning last year in Carissa Moore and Silvana Lima a welcome win from the many talented Brazilians that are on the tour. 

The Australians, South Africans, Americans and Hawaiian girls have dominated at Bell’s and as with all aspects of the sisterhood, revelled in each other’s victories, perhaps just a touch more when it is the Hawaiian girls who have triumphed in big waves. Not that Bell’s is disposed to turn it on on order despite her natural structures.

This Bell’s marks the 50th year since girls were allowed in, and although not allowed out in years when the swell has been deemed ‘too big’ , legends like Layne, who have joined counterparts of Hawaii in riding the monsters, have quietly affirmed by doing their thing we don’t need anyone’s permission to do that. 

There are older legends - Mark Twain’s etchings, Hawaiian chants that sing the stories of female surfers, tolling women on these islands were surfing from the outset of ‘wave sliding’. Their names ‘Kelea, and ‘Ka’ahumanu’, the favourite wife of King Kamehameha I, are linked with grace and expertise. A break called Ke-kai-o-Mamala (Sea of Mamala) honors an Oahu chieftess, also a famous surfer. Women surfing the waters in Tahiti, Aotearoa (New Zealand) and Rapa Nui (Easter Island) form part of these earliest records. 

If you hear the bells of Bell’s…ringing in the years this year, please remember that this is the 50th year for girls, even if only our 45th Bell’s contest, and that although we may look good in our swimmers, and pull off some great moves on the waves, there’s another beauty inside us that makes us look much better for those who have eyes to really see. Please remember it is Mother Nature who maketh and bringeth the waves, long before the advent of any entity named ‘Huey’. Her ocean has never excluded anyone. In fact, her song seems to sing over and over, ‘come into the water, be embraced by the waves’.

And while there, this Easter, perhaps offer up a salute to the 21 lady champions of Bell's - or as they're called here - Victorious Bell's Belles, and welcome in the 46th 'Victoria' who may become the 22nd!

The 2014 Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach surf competition takes place April 16 - 27 - official website with streaming HERE

References and Extras:

WOMEN At Bells:

1962 -

1963 -

1964 - Gail Couper

1965 – No Women

1966 - Gail Couper

1967 - Gail Couper – “Gail Couper hit 200 points, but Lyn Stubbins looked good.” + “Gail Couper looked good as usual and without Dorothy Derooy must keep the cup. Dorothy was the only major surfer unable to make the trip. Her boss the only holdout.” Kelly, Ross: Bells - as tolled by Ross KellySurfing World. Volume 9 Number 1 April-May 1967, pages 10 to 28. 

1968 - Gail Couper

1969 - Vivian Campbell

1970 - Gail Couper

1971 - Gail Couper

1972 - Gail Couper

1973 -

1974 - Gail Couper

1975 - Gail Couper

1976 - Gail Couper

1977 - Margo Oberg

1978 - Margo Oberg

1979 - Lynne Boyer

1980 - Margo Oberg

1981 - Linda Davoli

1982 - Debbie Beacham

1983 - Helen Lambert

1984 - Kim Mearig

1985 - Freida Zamba – The Age report: HERE

1986 - Freida Zamba

1987 - Jodie Cooper

1988 - Kim Mearig

1989 - Wendy Botha

1990 - Lisa Anderson

1991 - Pauline Menczer

1992 - Lisa Anderson

1993 - Pauline Menczer

1994 - Layne Beachley

1995 - Lisa Anderson

1996 - Pauline Menczer

1997 - Lisa Anderson

1998 - Layne Beachley

1999 - Layne Beachley

2000 - Megan Abubo

2001 - Neridah Falconer

2002 -

2003 -

2004 -

2005 - Sofia Mulanovich

2006 -

2007 - Stephanie Gilmore

2008 - Stephanie Gilmore

2009 - Silvana Lima

2010 - Stephanie Gilmore

2011 - Sally Fitzgibbons

2012 - Sally Fitzgibbons

2013 - Carissa Moore

Poster:  Australia - Fly There by BOAC and Qantas. Designer: Hayes. BOAC poster in association with Qantas, c1956. Below that: Mary-Ann Hawkins, Isobel Letham.

Isma Amor: First woman surfer, Manly Library Local Studies Blog, TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 07, 2010, retrieved from:manlylocalstudies.blogspot.com.au/2010/09/first-woman-surfer.html

Phyllis O'Donnell (born 1937) is an Australian surfer who became the first Women's World Surfing Champion. O'Donnell won the championship in 1964 at the age of 27.[1] At the time of her championship, surfing was dominated by men and her championship was regarded as a step forward for women's recognition in the sport. O'Donnell also won the Women's division of the Australian National Titles in surfing in 1964 and 1965. O’Donell, a native of Sydney, was born in 1937 and started surfing in the 50’s. Her early career would be heavily influenced by her mentors C.J. ”Snow” McAlister and Bob Evans (the original contest at Manly was organized by Bob Evans, a surf film maker and publisher of Australian Surfing World Magazine), the contest kicked off on May 17th before a mass of spectators conservatively estimated at 65,000.. At a time when the sport of surfing itself was considered to be on the fringe, women’s surfing was even further out on that fringe. In those early days Phyllis fought hard for acceptance on the Australian breaks and earned a reputation for being tough and aggressive among the leading male and female surfers of the time.

In the early 1960’s O’Donell relocated to the Gold Coast to be closer to the action and to hone her skills. A founding member of the ASAQ (now Surfing Queensland) she would win the Queensland Women’s Open title eight times. She further cemented her position as a world class competitor by wining the 1963 Australian Women’s title, a feat she would repeat in both 1964 and 1965. After wining the 1964 World Championships she remained a fierce competitor and added a 3rd at Makaha in ‘66, a 1st at Newcastle in ‘67, a 3rd at Puerto Rico in ‘68, and a 2nd place finish at Bells Beach in ’69 to her trophy haul.

Phyllis was inducted into the Australian Surfing Hall of Fame in 1996 and today, at 73 years old, she remains totally connected to the sport through her friendship with the leading female players on the World Tour. Retrieved from Wikipedia.

Australia third in surfing titles. SAN DIEGO, California. Wednesday(AAP - Reuter). Phyllis O'Donnell, 19, of Banora Point, Australia, won a third place and 22 points yesterday in preliminary competition at the World Surfing Championships. She was placed second in her heat. Gail Couper.,19. of Lome, Victoria, was fourth in the day's competition with 18 points. She won her heat. The judges said that Miss Couper started slowly hut improved quickly. "She probably would be great in large surf. She has a closed-foot stance, which is very stable and has a beautiful smooth style", they said. Miss O'Donnell adapted quite well to the surf which ran smaller than Australian waves, said judges. Americans Joyce Hoffman (30) and Joey Hamasa(26) finished first and second. Australia third in surfing titles. (1966, September 29). The Canberra Times (ACT : 1926 - 1995), p. 35. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article10693819

Surf title goes to Nixon, 16. MELBOURNE: Queensland's Connie Nixon carved up the opposition in one-metre waves at Bell's Beach yesterday to win the Australian women's surfing championship. Nixon, 16, the youngest winner of the title, added the national crown to along list of finals placings in women's national competition over the past season. Her next goal is to represent Australia in the world surfing titles at Cornwall, England, in September next year and then to turn professional and travel the world women's surfing circuit.

Sydney's Sandy Crago and Vanessa Noonan were second and third. Crago showed a lot of consistency and is now a force in Australian women's surfing. Noonan at times matched Nixon with her aggressive moves on the waves but could not maintain her attack. The kneeboard event was dominated by Victoria, Rosemary Kershaw and Sue Holderness sharing the honours over the three finals and Kershaw taking the aggregate championship. Waves during the competition reached a solid two metres. Nixon's performance will qualify her for the Australian Surf Riders' Association's national junior training camp at Newcastle in June. Surf title goes to Nixon, 16. (1985, May 14). The Canberra Times (ACT : 1926 - 1995), p. 22. Retrieved  from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article127009744

Should you be curious to learn more: 

Encyclopedia of Surfing by Matt Warshaw encyclopediaofsurfing.com/

Sydney Living Museums Surf City Exhibition - Curated by Gary Crockett: blogs.sydneylivingmuseums.com.au/surfcity/

Surf Research by Geoff Carter: surfresearch.com.au

World Champions of Surfing – Virtual Museum: www.worldchampionsofsurfing.com/

Mid 60s photo of Newport teenager Dorothy De Rooy, doing it, somewhere in Sydney, courtesy Dorothy Vidgen

Absolute pleasure to meet Dorothy Vidgen (formerly De Rooy) and Marilyn Birmingham at Newport today. Both were passionate board riders, totally involved in the mid 60s surfing world. While they were lucky enough to kick around their home breaks of Long Reef and Collaroy with a tight group of accepting and respected surfers, they also recalled a broader hostility towards women board riders and regarded themselves as pioneers. Even today Dorothy cringes at the way photographers favoured shots of her leaving the surf rather than ripping across the face of a wave. ‘You know’, she says, ‘I just loved surfing so much…’ by Gary Crockett on Sydney Living Musueum’s blog – part of the September 2011 Surf City Exhibition. Retrieved from: http://blogs.sydneylivingmuseums.com.au/surfcity/?p=1760  See also: http://blogs.sydneylivingmuseums.com.au/surfcity/?p=1057

SURFBOARD MOVE. (1945, June 19). The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954), p. 7. Retrieved fromhttp://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article17943117

9.25 (3] Getting Back To Nothing - A film on the 1970 World Championships at Bell's Beach, Victoria, exploring the lives and attitudes of some of the world's top surfers. 9.30  News Headlines. MONDAY. (1971, June 7). The Canberra Times (ACT : 1926 - 1995), p. 19. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article131810899

A striking shot of two surfers at Bells Beach, Victoria — from 'Surf Beaches of Australia's East Coast' (Angus and Robertson, Price $6-95) by Jeff Carter. Largely pictorial, the book contains fine pictures of beachesand beach-goers and maps show over 200 beaches and surfing spots. Scenic photographs are keyed to coastline maps. No title. (1968, October 5). The Canberra Times (ACT : 1926 - 1995), p. 12. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article131675001

SPORTS HELD IN BRIEF. Australian surfboard champion for 1945-46, Keith Hurst, has applied to join Avalon Surf Club and has resigned from North Bondi. Avalon will hold its annual meeting at the S L S A rooms, 16 Hunter Street, tomorrow night. SPORTS HELD IN BRIEF. (1946, September 25). The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954), p. 8. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article17996072

SURFBOARD WORKING PARTY. Bronte lifesavers left to right) Vic Callaghan, Bronte, George Bulbert, Belmore, and Barry Hurt, Bronte, line up surfboards for overhauling and painting in readiness for the swimming season.  SURFBOARD WORKING PARTY. (1954, August 30). The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954), p. 4. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article18429507

SURFBOARD RIDERS AT MANLY BEACH. Three young surfboard riders, Kevin Elliott and Jacqueline Wady (left) and Richard Stockley,  wait for a wave at Manly Beach. They were practicing for the surfboard championships in the coming season. SURFBOARD RIDERS AT MANLY BEACH. (1954, September 6). The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954), p. 5. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article18450767

SURF RESCUE. Girl Struck by Surfboard. Annie Fisher, 17 of Hannan-street South Kensington was struck by a surfboard at Maroubra Beach yesterday afternoon, and was nearly drowned She was being carried out to sea when Jack Fisher, a police cadet and a member of the Maroubra Surf Club rescued her When she was about 100 yards out a man was thrown off a surfboard It struck Miss Fisher in the ribs knocking the breath out of her She recovered after artificial respiration methods had been applied She was also treated for extensive bruises. SURF RESCUE. (1934, February 26). The Sydney Morning Herald(NSW : 1842 - 1954), p. 9. Retrieved fromhttp://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article17075480

Australian Team in Honolulu. OPEN-WATER CARNIVAL. HONOLULU July 16 - Members of the Australian surf team'competed in an open-water carnival, Surfboard men won two events. R. K. Russell (Palm Beach), L .Moralh(Manly), C. R. Chapple (North Bondi), and L. Borman comprised the Australian- team which won the mile surfboard relay for teams of four. The Australians also won the surfboard race over three-quarters of a mile by 20 yards from a local crew. Jark May (Honolulu) won the half-mile surfboard race by 30 yards from Russell, with Chapple third. SURFBOARD WINS. (1939, July 18). The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954), p. 15. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article17607043

50 Years of Girls at Bell's - Another Easter Tide to Consider by A J Guesdon, 2014.