Josh Kerr of Tweed Heads, winning in Round 4 of the Billabong Pro Tahiti with a heat total of 13.20 points (out of a possible 20.00) to advance in to the Quarter Finals at Teahupoo, Tahiti on 24 August 2015. Picture: © WSL / CestariPhotographer: Kelly CestariAUSTRALIAN surfers have shone in the fourth round of the Billabong Surf Pro in Tahiti, with Owen Wright and Josh Kerr earning direct advances to the quarter-finals.

Owen triumphed over Filipe Toledo and fellow Aussie Kai Otton with a score of 8.17, while Kerr trumped Wiggolly Dantas and giant-killing Spaniard Aritz Aranburu to qualify directly for the final eight.

Aranburu had earlier eliminated second-ranked Mick Fanning in a shock third-round victory.

Defending Tahiti champion Gabriel Medina and 11-time WSL champion Kelly Slater also held off stiff competition to snare the other two automatic quarter-final spots.

Earlier, a perfect-10 wave score from lowly ranked American CJ Hobgood thwarted Julian Wilson’s chance to leap to the top of the standings.

The Australian world title contender was eliminated after losing his third-round battle 13.60 to 9.50.

The world No.36 pulled a rabbit out of a hat in the last five minutes of an otherwise uneventful heat, emerging faultlessly from a barrel that looked to have swallowed him up.

It was the first ‘‘perfect-10’’ of the tournament.

Hobgood then lost to Slater in round four and will now compete for a quarter-final spot with Aranburu.

Wilson joins Fanning as Australians to have missed an opportunity to capitalise on the elimination of Brazilian ratings leader Adriano de Souza.

Australia’s Joel Parkinson (14.60) was also bundled out earlier by French competitor Jeremy Flores. AAP

Classic cars cruise into Newcastle Vintage drive: The fleet of Model T Fords attracted attention and crowds as they rolled into the Newcastle Museum. Picture: Jonathan Carroll

Vintage drive: The fleet of Model T Fords attracted attention and crowds as they rolled into the Newcastle Museum. Picture: Jonathan Carroll

Vintage drive: The fleet of Model T Fords attracted attention and crowds as they rolled into the Newcastle Museum. Picture: Jonathan Carroll

Vintage drive: The fleet of Model T Fords attracted attention and crowds as they rolled into the Newcastle Museum. Picture: Jonathan Carroll

Vintage drive: The fleet of Model T Fords attracted attention and crowds as they rolled into the Newcastle Museum. Picture: Jonathan Carroll

Vintage drive: The fleet of Model T Fords attracted attention and crowds as they rolled into the Newcastle Museum. Picture: Jonathan Carroll

TweetFacebookWITH a name like Bob Hawke, it’s no surprise one Edgeworth car enthusiast is interested in history.

Mr Hawke, president of the NSW chapter of the Model T Ford Club of Australia, led a convoy of classic cars,including his1925 farm truck,from Kurri Kurri to Newcastle Museum on Tuesday.

The retiree bought the Model T, his second, around 20 years ago without even looking at it, after a friend told him it was for sale.

Then, he spent 8 years restoring it back to working condition – but says with a laugh that the restoration process never really ends.

‘‘Most of us start with a great pile of junk, and then just go through and buy stuff and make them,’’ he said.

‘‘You do have to get professional help with the painting and things like that, [but] some people can do it themselves.’’

All the time and money was worth it when the group pulled up to the museum, greeted by curious stares and a crowd who gathered to inspect the fleet.

Mr Hawke says the Sydney-based club try to go for a drive once every month, usually on a Sunday

Kurt Gidley is set to play his 250th match for the Knights.KNIGHTS skipper Kurt Gidley is feeling mixed emotions about surpassing Andrew Johns to sit behind only Danny Buderus on the list of Newcastle’s most capped players.

Gidley will become just the second player in Knights history to play 250 games for the club, passing Johns (249) and moving into outright second behind Buderus (257) when he leads Newcastle against the Bulldogs on Old Boys’ Day at Hunter Stadium on Saturday.

‘‘I don’t know whether I’m proud of that or not,’’ said Gidley, who will leave the Knights at the end of the season to finish his career with English Super League club Warrington.

‘‘I’ve got so many people to thank during my career because of where I am, and Joey’s certainly one of those.’’


The 33-year-old former NSW and Australian utility joined Johns on 249 games when he led the Knights to a remarkable 20-6 victory over Melbourne at AAMI Park on Monday night – a win he rated as one of the most satisfying and enjoyable of his career.

Johns and Buderus, the former NSW and Australian halfback and hooker generally considered the two best players the Knights have produced, were Gidley’s captains for his first eight years at the club, then he succeeded Buderus at the end of 2008.

He remains close friends with both and said they left lasting impressions on him as he developed into a player and leader capable of captaining his club and state.

‘‘Joey took me under his wing when I was a young fella and would take me down the park outside of training hours and help me and my game, and Danny was another one,’’ he said of the Knights Hall of Famers.

‘‘When I was coming through, they were my leaders. Joey was captain then he moved on and Danny was captain, so I wouldn’t be the player I am today without those two guys.’’

Gidley could not have scripted a better scenario for his 250th game.

‘‘I’m so proud of everything I’ve achieved at this club,’’ he said. ‘‘I love all the former players, and I love mixing with those guys – guys that I played with and guys who I didn’t play with that come back to town and still love the club and the team.

‘‘It’s a great thrill for me to lead the boys out through the guard of honour, through our Old Boys, and to do it one last time on a special milestone for myself, in front of the Old Boys, it couldn’t have worked out any better.’’

Gidley wondered whether he would even reach 200 games while he battled several serious injuries in 2012 and 2013, when he was restricted to a total of 19 appearances.

But he worked hard in the rehab room and recovered to play 23 games last season, and 20 this year with two left against the Bulldogs and Panthers.

‘‘It was pretty tough to bounce back from those, wondering whether I’d be the same player as before, and those are challenging times when you’re out with long-term injuries and wondering whether you’ll get back to playing consistent first-grade games,’’ he said.

‘‘But in the past two years I’ve knocked out a fair few games and I’ve been proud that I’ve come back from adversity, and the past two seasons have been challenging on and off the field, but last night goes down as one of the greatest memories of my career.’’

Gidley expected to feel a range of emotions in the lead-up to the game against Canterbury but was confident he could control those.

‘‘I’ve played in plenty of games where I’ve had to keep a lid on emotions, and this will be another one,’’ he said.

‘‘Knowing there’s another game after this week is probably good because I still need to focus on what happens post this week.

‘‘I think emotions are great. I’m an emotional bloke, and I ride the highs and lows.

‘‘I love playing a team sport in front of my home fans and my family, I love playing in front of my ex-teammates and the Old Boys, so it’s great that the emotion is there.

‘‘That will hopefully give me a lift, and my teammates a lift, so I think it’s important to embrace the emotions but probably not let it get over the top.’’

The power line felled by would-be copper thieves in Doyalson on the NSW Central Coast on Monday. Photo: AusgridWould-be thieves risked electrocution and triggered a mass blackout by attempting to steal copper wire from the power grid by chopping down a power pole with a chainsaw on Monday.

The foolhardy vandals cut power to 800 homes and businesses on the Central Coast when they felled the power pole at 1.36pm, Ausgrid said.

The attempted burglars sawed clean through the pole on a paddock in Doyalson, bringing down a pole-top substation and live power lines across a property.

The live electrical equipment at the top of the pole would have sent sparks flying as it hit the ground, which likely scared off the culprits before they could pinch the copper, an Ausgrid spokeswoman said.

They were lucky they didn’t electrocute themselves in the attempt, she said.

The incident was “one of the most brazen acts of vandalism we’ve seen – and the most stupid”, the spokeswoman said.

“Not only did these thieves put their own lives at risk by cutting down this power pole, they’ve also endangered the safety of the public.

“This reckless act could have cost a life or started a bushfire.”

Ausgrid reported the attack to police as technicians worked for up to three-and-a-half hours to restore power to the affected houses and businesses, the company said.

Locals who saw anything suspicious or have any information that could assist police have been urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

Metal theft is a “lucrative and attractive venture for thieves”, an Australian Institute of Criminology 2011 report said, estimating the cost of metal theft to be $100 million a year.

The number of thefts rose to 126 in 2011-12, while the cost of repairs jumped to $300,000 from $200,000 across Ausgrid’s NSW electricity network.

Metal recyclers pay from $5 to $6 a kilogram for clean copper, website Scrap Metal Prices said.

TREVOR Aitchison created club history last Wednesday when he became the first Mayfield West bowler to win the Les Parrott Memorial open singles, which is part of the 55th annual NDBA Mattara Bowls Carnival.

Aitchison led all the way in the final to beat Richard Lee (Tea Gardens) 25-14, after racing to a match-winning 15-3 lead after nine ends.

In the semi-finals, Aitchison downed Sean Mearrick (Tea Gardens) 25-10 and Lee accounted for Sam Chapman (Warners Bay) 25-22.

Merewether’s Claude Pendlebury proved too consistent for 16-year-old Jayden Robinson (East Maitland) in the restricted singles final, winning 25-16, after the scores were tied 11-11 after 10 ends.

Pendlebury scored five shots on the last three ends to edge out Geoff Wallis (Kahibah) 25-23 in the semi-finals, while Robinson comfortably defeated Robert Butler (Warners Bay) 25-16.

■ Lambton Bowling Club will host the semi-finals and finals of the traditional Mattara carnival on Friday from 9.30am and 1pm respectively.

Three-time men’s open fours champions Wayne Smith, John Parkinson, Andrew Smith and Jason Pietraszek (Soldiers Point) will attempt to win a record-breaking fourth title when they meet the strong Charlestown quartet of Shane Barclay, Ian Barrett, Trent Bennison and Terry Blow in the semi-finals.

The second semi-final will be fought out between the Wallsend combination of David Hawkins, Paul Wilson, John Dennis and Glenn Soper and Water Board’s Jim McDonald, Craig Eades, Jarrod Duncan and David Horne.

Teams from East Maitland and Soldiers Point will fight out the mixed pairs semi-finals.

Jan and Roy Sutherland (East Maitland) play juniors Kate Matthews and Mitchell Bellingham (Soldiers Point), while Lesley Wilson and John Collins (Soldiers Point) meet Shendelle and Bob Smith (East Maitland).

■ The Frank Neat Memorial men’s classic triples starts on Wednesday with defending titleholders Jason Pietraszek, Lee Such and Terry Antram (Soldiers Point) opposing the Marks Point trio of John Arthurson, John Finn and Andre Monis.

The 2013 winning skipper, Martin Ball, has transferred from Alder Park to Kotara and has two new players in Wayne Squires and Harold Unsted.

They appear evenly matched against the Wallsend trio of club president Mick Lewis, Chris Elkin and promising young bowler Nick Evans.

■ The Newcastle district champion of club champions singles championship starts on Saturday.

Defending titleholder David Govan (Valentine) meets Mark Heath (Redhead) in the first round at Water Board.

■ Windale-Gateshead has two vacancies for its $5500 encouragement triples tournament next Monday and Tuesday.

It is open to all bowlers who are graded No.3 grade open pennant or under in 2015.

■ The 2015 NSW Woomeras bowlers arm team, containing 12 Newcastle and Hunter bowlers, travel to Tranmere Bowling Club, South Australia, to play for the Bowls Australia trophy on September 6-10.