Cool Ten at the Aurora Surfing Challenge by Photographer Mark Cristino

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Cool Ten at the Aurora Surfing Challenge by Photographer Mark Cristino

Mark Cristino is a sports photographer from Manila who is no stranger to the surf and skate scene. He is part of the awesome Blunt Magazine and can be regularly seen at surf spots with his huge lens capturing rad moments of the day’s session. Last month, Mark was able to be part of the Aurora Surfing Challenge and in today’s blog Mark is sharing his 10 favorite shots of the event plus a bit of commentary from the shutterbug himself.


Photo is from day 2 of the competition. I don’t know if these guys were practicing for their heat or just plain surfing, I just saw them ripping.


Sylvester Bactad in his heat for the groms, I’m a big fan of this kid (actually all the groms!) and was surprised he didn’t make it to the finals, but he was up against Neil Sanchez and John Mark Tokong during the semis and the waves weren’t there for him.


Another grom! I’m not good at memorizing names (so please identify him) and after looking at this photo, I started to wonder why I didn’t start surfing at a young age or a few years earlier. I envy the little rippers. (that’s Rene “Peryong” Ventura of La Union).


JR Esquivel was catching waves everywhere during the first heats, I think he doesn’t have a problem with that and the judges would announce once in a while: “one last wave for you boy” It didn’t turn out that way in the finals though.


Piso Alcala, everytime I transferred photos to my laptop I would ask Kitya or Jason; “Do you know this guy?” “Yup” they replied, “that’s Piso” and I was rooting for him up to the Finals, but he wasn’t lucky with the waves.


Wahine champ Nelvie Blancada, can surf better than me and other men for sure. Hehehe.


PJ Alipayo was out after the quarters and was riding the “peak” while the semis was held at the “bowl”. We had this view of him doing frontside airs, and he had that sick design on his board: “Get out and surf…” “Live your life”…. so yes, you know what to do.


Okoy Rojo, one of the pioneers, pure class and style. ‘Nuff said.


Neil Sanchez has a close call with John Mark Tokong. This was during the finals heat, and everyone thought Neil lost a fin (as seen by his coaches, I guess) it turned out John and Neil’s fin were ok.


Jeff Dela Torre, champ and charging at the finals; only had a few sets, but big humungous ones! I knew after riding this wave that he would be the champ.


Awesome right? One of the very few surf  photographers really passionate about the community. View the rest of Mark’s photography here on Flickr and don’t forget to like Blunt Magazine on Facebook.

1 Comment

  1. […] Remember last year’s action at Sabang and Cemento? Philippine surfing heavyweights Jeff dela Torre and Okoy Rojo of Baler, phenom Jay-R Esquivel of La Union and Siargao legend Piso Alcala battled till the end but Jeff ultimately won thru great wave selection. Can he do it again this year? Or will Okoy and rest of the surfers from all over the country put a stop on his winning streak? One thing’s for sure though, the competition will be tough and it’ll be exciting to see who will come out on top. […]

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