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Last Updated: Wednesday, 6 April, 2005, 13:55 GMT 14:55 UK
Shark girl surfer hits the waves
Bethany Hamilton at Watergate Bay
Bethany hopes to return to the UK to take part in surf competitions
A teenage surfer from Hawaii who lost her left arm in a shark attack made a splash in Cornwall when she visited the county to go surfing.

Bethany Hamilton, 15, said she needed a wetsuit three times thicker than her usual one to cope with the waters at Watergate Bay, near Newquay.

She said: "It was OK, but pretty cold - I think it's the coldest sea I've ever surfed in. It was a fun experience."

Bethany lost her arm in Hawaii when she was attacked by a tiger shark in 2003.

During her time in Cornwall, Bethany helped teach new Blue Peter presenter Gethin Jones, 26, to surf for a future episode of the children's TV programme.

The teenager said: "For beach breaks it was pretty average, but they're not really as good as my home breaks."

Film start

She said of her Blue Peter students: "He did really good for his first day, and we were all really impressed."

Bethany, from Princeville on the Hawaiian island of Kauai, was surfing near Tunnels Beach on Kauai when she was attacked by the 14ft (4.3m) tiger shark, which ripped off her left arm below the shoulder.

Bethany survived the attack and has continued surfing, winning three contests and coming fifth in 2004's American national surf championships.

A film about her life, entitled Soul Surfer, will start production in January.

Bethany will not play herself in the movie, but she will perform the surfing stunts.




SEE ALSO:
Movie to tell shark girl's story
03 Sep 04 |  Entertainment


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