Sydney’s invitation-only surf competition ran through two hours of battles in extreme waves on the edge of Botany Bay on Monday before being put on hold as officials waited for the wild conditions to relent.
After Red Bull Cape Fear was given the go-ahead for 2016, a selection of Australia’s best slab-riding specialists went to work on the biggest waves ever ridden at this infamous break. The paddle-in portion of the event was cancelled as it was deemed impossible to surf the waves without being towed-in by a jet ski.
The day saw plenty of thrills and spills as competitors pushed the limits in the 12-to-15 foot waves breaking only meters from a jagged rock shelf.
“I think everyone in the event would agree this is the biggest the Cape has ever been surfed,” said Maroubra’s Blake Thornton, a former world tour surfer and veteran competitor.
“I was really nervous before the event started, then once I got out on the back on the jet ski I was pumped up and ready to go. I didn’t want to wait too long before I got my first wave because I knew the nerves would build again, and thankfully managed to get a good one early.
“Even though I got absolutely smashed at the end of the battle it’s going to be a surf I remember for a long time, with one great wave and one of the worst wipeouts I’ve ever had.”
After two battles the event team re-assessed the conditions and confirmed the event would be postponed until Tuesday.
At the halfway mark of competition Justen Allport is leading with a score of 15.25, ahead of Russell Bierke and Evan Faulks in second and third respectively. Allport was taken to hospital for assessment after a wipeout at the end of his heat, but is in a stable condition.
The event team will assess conditions again on Tuesday morning. Further details on RedBullCapeFear.com.
A photo posted by RedBull.com Surfing (@redbull_surfing) on
ABOUT RED BULL CAPE FEAR COMPETITION FORMAT
• 16 surfers
• 8 head-to-head battles
• 4 surfers in the water at all times (2 contesting a 30-minute paddle-in element and 2 in a 30-minute tow-in element)
• Each battle crowns a winner, and the 4 highest placed winners will progress through to the final
• The highest placed surfer at the end of the final will be crowned the Red Bull Cape Fear Champion
Johanne Defay (FRA) has claimed victory today at The Fiji Women’s Pro, Stop No. 5 of 10 on the 2016 Samsung Galaxy WSL Championship Tour (CT), besting reigning three-time WSL Champion Carissa Moore (HAW) in six-to-eight foot (2 – 2.5 metre) surf at Cloudbreak.
“I’ve never beat Carissa (Moore) before,” Defay said. “She is such an amazing surfer and she took 9-point rides in every heat. It is crazy and I am so happy. I want to thank my family because they have been up all night watching.”
Today is the second elite CT win for Defay, who claimed her first CT victory at the Vans US Open last year. The 2015 Fiji Women’s Pro semifinalist dispatched Courtney Conlogue (USA) in the Quarterfinals and Bethany Hamilton (HAW) in the Semifinals before facing Moore. Previously at 7th place on the Jeep Leaderboard, the result moves her to 4th place.
“The waves were really incredible for us this year – we are so fortunate,” Defay said. “All the girls were ripping. I felt like I wasn’t surfing very smart heats leading up to the Final. I was getting good waves at the end and advancing so I wanted to start strong in the Final. I’m so stoked right now.”
The Final match-up saw extraordinary performances from both surfers. Defay dropped an excellent 8.40 with massive hacks and clean turns in the pocket. With less than ten minutes left on the clock, sets out the back gave both surfers opportunities to improve their scores. Moore set up with a huge backside hack, but fell on her second maneuver. Defay attacked the lip to lock in an 8.70, putting the three-time World Champion in a combination situation with less than five minutes left. Moore was not able to find the waves to combat Defay’s 17.10.
“I was having an okay year but this really helps me get into a better place for me on the rankings,” Defay said. “The next few events are usually strong for me so I hope to keep the results coming.”
Defay heads into the upcoming Vans U.S. Open of Surfing as the defending event winner.
The Fiji Women’s Pro marks Moore’s first Final appearance of the season and her best result at the event. Moore put on a flawless performance en route to the Final, including a perfect 10 in her Quarterfinal match-up against Laura Enever (AUS). The runner-up finish will see her stay in the 3rd position on the Jeep Leaderboard.
“It was really an amazing event and I’m really happy with the way everyone surfed,” Moore said. “Disappointing that I wasn’t able to stay in rhythm for the Final, but congratulations to Johanne (Defay), she surfed incredible.”
“Fiji has been a challenging event for me in past years so it felt great to get some solid waves and big scores under my belt here,” Moore continued. “Big thanks to my coach, C.J. Hobgood, and to my support team here at home. Finals is a good result and I’ll look to build upon it at the next event in Huntington Beach.”
Bethany Hamilton (HAW), global sporting icon and wildcard into the Fiji Women’s Pro, was eliminated in Semifinal 1 by Defay. The Frenchwoman set the rhythm early by unleashing vertical maneuvers to earn a near-perfect 9.20. Defay backed up her opening ride with an 8.27, forcing Hamilton to find two new scores. Defay continued to strengthen her two-wave total, throwing away solid scoring rides. Hamilton fought back with sharp cutbacks, but was not able to defeat Defay.
Hamilton caused a series of upsets as she blazed through the draw, eliminating world No. 1 Tyler Wright (AUS) in Round 2 and defeating six-time WSL Champion Stephanie Gilmore (AUS) in Round 3, before taking down Nikki Van Dijk (AUS) in the Quarterfinals. This event marks Hamilton’s sixth appearance in a Championship Tour event and the third-place finish is her best ever CT result.
“Coming here and competing in the Fiji Women’s Pro is a dream come true and I am stoked with how I did,” Hamilton said. “The women on the Championship Tour are surfing amazing right now and the level continues to get better and better. I have so much respect for all the girls and it has been an amazing time here. I am so thankful for my husband’s and family’s support and all of my fans for cheering me on. It has been an incredible experience.”
Bianca Buitendag (ZAF), 2015 event runner-up, took on Moorein an epic Semifinal clash. The two surfers went wave for wave to secure a spot in the Finals. Moore got off to an incredible start with powerful backhand snaps that earned her a near-perfect 9.77. Buitendag battled back with an excellent 8.27 and 7.83 to take the lead in the last ten minutes. Under pressure, Moore responded with solid rides to regain the lead. Moore continued to improve her situation by delivering another near perfect score, a 9.27, forcing Buitendag to find two new scores with five minutes left. Buitendag’s 3rd place finish marks her best result this season. Buitendag will remain at 9th place on the Jeep Leaderboard.
“Learning from the best, like Carissa, will help me improve,” said Buitendag. “The way Carissa approaches the lip is much more committed and critical to what I had done. Definitely that and spending more time on lefts, because I do not do that as often. There is so much to learn from all of these girls and I am so happy to be a part of it.”
In a heated re-match of the 2015 Fiji Women’s Pro final, Buitendag previously edged out defending event winner Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS) in the Quarterfinals by just 3.73 points, ending Fitzgibbons’ run for a third-consecutive event Title. This 5th place finish will see Fitzgibbons remain 5th on the Jeep Rankings.
Courtney Conlogue (USA) was eliminated in the Quarterfinals by Defay. Conlogue controlled the heat with a 14.00 two-wave score, but an aggressive three turn combo under Conlogue’s priority earned Defay an excellent 9.17. Conlogue was given one last opportunity advance in the dying minutes of the heat, but could not close the 1.07 gap on Defay.
“In the start of the heat I definitely had control of it,” Conlogue said. “As I came around, I lost my rhythm with the ocean and Johanne ended up maximizing on it and I made a few mistakes in that heat. I just have to go back to the drawing board and learn from my mistakes heading into the US Open. I am trying to win events and surf the best I can. When I get to the US Open that is what I will be working on.”
Conlogue’s 5th place finish in Fiji has earned her back the WSL Jeep Leader’s’ Jersey at the upcoming Vans US Open of Surfing.
Fiji Women’s Pro Final Results: 1 – Johanne Defay (FRA) 17.10 2 – Carissa Moore (HAW) 10.70
Fiji Women’s Pro Semifinal Results: SF 1: Johanne Defay (FRA) 17.47 def. Bethany Hamilton (HAW) 11.06 SF 2: Carissa Moore (HAW) 19.04 def. Bianca Buitendag (ZAF) 16.60
Fiji Women’s Pro Quarterfinal Results: Heat 1: Bethany Hamilton (HAW) 12.33 def. Nikki Van Dijk (AUS) 11.26 Heat 2: Johanne Defay (FRA) 15.07 def. Courtney Conlogue (USA) 14.00 Heat 3: Carissa Moore (HAW) 19.03 def. Laura Enever (AUS) 15.77 Heat 4: Bianca Buitendag (ZAF) 14.40 def. Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS) 10.67
2016 Samsung Galaxy WSL Top 5 (after Fiji Women’s Pro):
British Longboard Union Porthcawl Longboard Classic 2016 at Rest Bay presented by Porthcawl Surf School in association with Surfing Great Britain & The Welsh Surfing Federation.
Competitors travelled from Jersey, Cornwall, Devon and the North East for the inaugural BLU event held on the stunning South Wales coast at Rest Bay in Porthcawl, Wales.
This was the second stop of this year’s tour and a historical moment in the British Longboard Union’s calendar, marking the organization’s 20th Anniversary. Saturday kicked off with the Open and Ladies divisions, from which there was a 5 surfer repechage round providing a second bite of the cherry for those unlucky not to finish in the top two and allowed a single competitor to progress through to Round 3.
Conditions changed dramatically with the tide and by the afternoon with a strong rip running and the tide and wind pushing up the swell it meant for much paddling to stay in position. The event also faced a mythically epic example of a Welsh downpour as the heavens opened leaving spectators, judges and production crew in as aqueous an environment as the competitors, who completed their preliminary rounds in the building, shoulder high conditions delivered by the afternoon tidal push.
Sunday started with clean 2ft swell in calm sunny conditions for the semi-final heats of the Carve Open division which saw Jersey competitors Aaron Rowe and Josh Le Marquand progress to the finals alongside Devon’s Ben Howey and 11 times European Champion Ben ‘Skindog’ Skinner.
The Women’s round 3 heats were surfed in similarly good conditions, followed quickly by the semi-finals of the Single Fin and straight final of the Girls U18 before the event was placed on pause for low tide and associated drop in wave size. Competition resumed in the afternoon with a shift in conditions as the wind increased to a strong onshore and a testing 3-4ft swell for the final of the Junior U18’s & the Grand Masters, followed by the Ladies semi-finals and finals of the Masters, Ladies and Single Fin divisions and concluding with the Carve Open final.
The Junior U18 heat saw some impressive displays of upcoming talent amongst finalists Jack Unsworth, Joe Hornbuckle, Jordan Zervas & Tom Horn with Jack Unsworth squeezing the win over Cadet U16 winner Jordan Zervas.
A wealth of surfing experience shone through during the final of the Masters and Grand Masters divisions with Adam Chell and Colin Bright respectively taking the titles as they battled the southern rip and challenging conditions to score some impressive rides into the bay.
Making it through to the finals of the Ladies category; defending Ladies champion Claire Smail, Bude’s Emily Currie, Newquay’s Jen Pendlebury and Jersey’s Charlotte Bayliss. Through a tight heat of graceful enigmatic rides from all competitors, Jen Pendlebury claimed her first competition win over Claire Smail.
Some fantastic competition between Ben Skinner and Josh le Marquand (previous local event winner at the Jersey Laneez El Tico Longboard Classic) thrilled spectators with a mix of traditional and progressive maneuvers during the very high scoring Single Fin final, with the win eventually going to Skinner.
The concluding division of the event – the Carve Open final – showcased an excellent display of progressive longboard surfing with Ben Skinner and Ben Howey combining both rail and fancy footwork to impressive effect, raising applause and hoots of excitement from the spectators and fellow competitors alike, to take first and second place respectively as the final horn triumphantly signaled the end of The British Longboard Unions 2nd tour event of 2016.
1 Ben Skinner
2 Ben Howey
3 Josh le Marquand
4 Aaron Rowe
1 Jen Pendlebury
2 Claire Smail
3 Emily Currie
4 Charlotte Bayliss
1 Ben Skinner
2 Josh le Marquand
3 Jack Unsworth
4 Aaron Rowe
1 Adam Chell
2 Colin Bright
3 Jason Gray
4 Ben Keay
1 Colin Bright
2 Simon Gould
3 Rich Unsworth
4 Ray Lee
1 Jack Unsworth
2 Joe Hornbuckle
3 Jordan Zervas
4 Tom Horn
1 Jordan Zervas
2 Tom Horn
3 Rudder Rava
1 Beth Leighfield
2 Lily Wright
The British Longboard Union would like to thank Tour Manager and Contest Director Robert ‘Minnow’ Green for his continued dedication to the tour since 1996, Porthcawl local event organizer Steve Horn and the Welsh Coast Surf Club for the warmth of their hospitality.
We’d also like to thank our esteemed judges and members of the event team, without whom none of this would be possible.
Special thanks to our sponsors for their support of the event: Carve, Elusive Surf, Welsh Surfing Federation, Surfing Great Britain, Flow Surf and Skate, Malc’s Cafe, Porthcawl Surf School, Bridgend Bites, MÔR Creative: Creadigol, Rad Bags & The Welsh Coast Surf Club.
A heated final day at the Oi Rio Women’s Pro, the fourth stop on the Samsung Galaxy WSL Championship Tour, saw Tyler Wright (AUS) claim victory at Barra da Tijuca defeating Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS)in a hard-fought Final.
The win today in Rio is Wright’s third of the season, following previous triumphs on the Gold Coast and at Bells Beach. Back-to-back event wins see her take first place on the Jeep Leaderboard and Wright will wear the leader jersey at the upcoming Fiji Women’s Pro. Wright previously dispatched Carissa Moore (HAW) and Johanne Defay (FRA) en route to the Final today.
“This is the best I’ve ever felt,” Wright said. “Over the last six months so many things have happened and it has given me a lot of perspective on the way I want to run my career and surf my heats. I want to say a massive thanks to my family. They make it all worthwhile.”
“I am so excited to win here in Brazil,” continued Wright. “It is fun and there are so many things you need to take into account, and you have to just flow with it. I think this was the most challenging of any event and any final. It was hard work and I am stoked.”
The all-Australian Final match-up saw a close battle between Wright and Fitzgibbons. Showcasing her power surfing and control, Wright set the bar early on by dropping an excellent 8.67. Wright continued to back up her opening ride, putting pressure on Fitzgibbons to land a solid score. With ten minutes left on the clock, Fitzgibbons hammered a critical section to earn 7.17 and begin to close the gap on Wright. In the closing minutes Fitzgibbons was left searching for 5.94 while massive sets out the back pushed the athletes further from the take-off. Fitzgibbons was out of position to attempt a final attack and Wright, with a 13.10 two-wave score, defeated Fitzgibbons by 2.76 points to take the win.
Today is the second Final berth for Fitzgibbons this season, who also finished runner-up at Bells Beach. The result will see the two-time Rio event winner move up one place on the Jeep Leaderboard from 6th to 5th. To reach the Final Fitzgibbons took down Courtney Conlogue (USA) and Malia Manuel (HAW).
“It was a great effort by Tyler and huge congratulations to her,” said Fitzgibbons. “In the Final, I was just hoping for one more wave at the end. I could feel that win. I had put myself back into contention, and I loved the challenge today. I really feed off the energy of the crowd. The fans here are so passionate about surfing, so it is a pleasure to come here and perform.”
2015 event winner Courtney Conlogue (USA) will relinquish the Jeep Leader Jersey after being defeated by Fitzgibbons in Semifinal 1. With an event win at Bells Beach and runner-up finishes on the Gold Coast and at Margaret River, today’s result marks Conlogue’s first absence from the Finals this season and sees her move to 2nd place on the Jeep Leaderboard.
The bout between Conlogue and Fitzgibbons saw multiple lead changes, as both surfers put everything on the line to advance to the Finals. Fitzgibbons held onto a 14.10 heat score, leaving Conlogue to chase a 6.61. In the dying seconds of the heat, Conlogue had one last opportunity to post the required score, but could not stick the landing.
“This finish is a positive, as third is a keeper result at the end of the season,” Conlogue said. “But I was definitely hoping to get the win and it was a bit frustrating to not catch those skis. I just have to learn from what went on in that heat, so I can draw off of that knowledge for Fiji. Things were zig-zagging all the way through the final minutes. I have to brush my knees off and get ready for the next one.”
Wright took down Carissa Moore (HAW), reigning three-time WSL Champion, in Semifinal 2. Moore has yet to secure a spot in the Finals this season, with a Semifinal finish at each event of the season so far. The World Champion will head into Fiji in third place on the Jeep Leaderboard.
Wright opened up Semifinal 2 against Moore with a huge frontside hook to earn an 8.77, the highest score of the heat and the Semifinal match-ups. Wright controlled the Semifinal with a 13.60 two-wave score, forcing Moore to chase a 7.68. Moore was not able to find the waves to combat Wright.
Six-time WSL Champion Stephanie Gilmore (AUS) was eliminated in the Quarterfinals by Moore. The heat marked the seventeenth head-to-head match-up between the two CT superstars, adding a tenth win to Moore’s tally. The Hawaiian got off to a quick start to lock in an excellent 8.77 and continued to better her heat total with a 7.07. Caught in a combination situation, Gilmore struggled to find the scores to close the gap on Moore. Gilmore will walk away with a 5th place finish and moves down one place to 6th on the Jeep Leaderboard.
“I think with the few days in between competition I probably got a little too relaxed,” Gilmore said. “I keep putting together great performances, but they sort of fall apart as the event goes on. This event is really testing, it tests your patience and your focus. I definitely struggled out there. I am just having a love affair with the Quarterfinals. But I am looking forward to Fiji. There is a big swell heading there and it is probably a great time to practice and take as many boards as you can out there. We will see what happens.”
Oi Rio Women’s Pro Final Results:
1 – Tyler Wright (AUS) 13.10 2 – Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS) 10.34
Oi Rio Women’s Pro Semifinal Results:
SF 1: Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS) 14.10 def. Courtney Conlogue (USA) 14.00 SF 2: Tyler Wright (AUS) 13.60 def. Carissa Moore (HAW) 10.10
Oi Rio Women’s Pro Quarterfinal Results:
QF 1: Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS) 13.73 def. Malia Manuel (HAW) 13.30 QF 2: Courtney Conlogue (USA) 16.50 def. Tatiana Weston-Webb (HAW) 11.10 QF 3: Tyler Wright (AUS) 14.87 def. Johanne Defay (FRA) 12.70 QF 4: Carissa Moore (HAW) 15.84 def. Stephanie Gilmore (AUS) 7.50
2016 Samsung Galaxy Top 5 (after Oi Rio Women’s Pro): 1 – Tyler Wright (AUS) 35,200 pts 2 – Courtney Conlogue (USA) 32,500 pts 3 – Carissa Moore (HAW) 26,000 pts 4 – Tatiana Weston-Webb (HAW) 23,400 pts 5 – Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS) 22,950 pts
Oi Rio Pro Men’s Round 3 Match-Ups:
Heat 1: Filipe Toledo (BRA) vs. Leonardo Fioravanti (ITA) Heat 2: John John Florence (HAW) vs. Alejo Muniz (BRA) Heat 3: Nat Young (USA) vs. Dusty Payne (HAW) Heat 4: Caio Ibelli (BRA) vs. Ryan Callinan (AUS) Heat 5: Stuart Kennedy (AUS) vs. Davey Cathels (AUS) Heat 6: Adriano de Souza (BRA) vs. Lucas Silveira (BRA) Heat 7: Italo Ferreira (BRA) vs. Marco Fernandez (BRA) Heat 8: Kanoa Igarashi (USA) vs. Miguel Pupo (BRA) Heat 9: Sebastian Zietz (HAW) vs. Adam Melling (AUS) Heat 10: Jordy Smith (ZAF) vs. Jack Freestone (HAW) Heat 11: Michel Bourez (PYF) vs. Matt Banting (AUS) Heat 12: Gabriel Medina (BRA) vs. Deivid Silva (BRA)
Cornwall, last Thursday, was one of those days. Solid swell, offshores, sunshine, but tricky finding anywhere pumping. Big tides meant anywhere that was on, wasn’t on for very long. Still, with a full day of decent weather it was a treat to be on the sand at 5:45am and still be there, albeit at a different beach, at 8pm…
In the course of the day we managed to bump into Ben Skinner, Markie Lascelles, Josh Ward, Skippy, Ben Howard, Owain Davies, Stoker, Mr B and Reubyn Ash amongst others. Just nice to see everyone out loving the warmth and the waves.
Tyler Wright (AUS)has won the Drug Aware Margaret River Pro today, defeating Courtney Conlogue (USA) in pumping 6 to 8 foot (2 – 2.5 metre) waves at Main Break in Western Australia.
The third stop on the 2016 Samsung Galaxy WSL Championship Tour, the Drug Aware Margaret River Pro, saw firing conditions today with the world’s best surfers battling to secure a solid finish on the last stop of the Australian leg.
The Final match-up witnessed the ultimate throw-down between Wright and Conlogue. Wright unleashed a variety of maneuvers to lock in an 8.93 to take the lead ahead of Conlogue. Wright strengthened her score with a barrel for a 9.60 to put the defending event Champion in a combination situation halfway through the Final. Wright continued to put up solid numbers to back up her 18.53 two-wave combined score. Conlogue, who has won three Titles as this event, struggled to find the scores to combat the Australian. In the last forty-five seconds a set wave came out the back. Using priority, Conlogue needed a near-perfect 9.97, but was not able to complete the ride to earn the score.
“I knew Courtney was just dropping 9-point rides every heat, so I knew I had to be smart in selecting my waves and turns and not get over excited,” Wright said. “Every wave I had felt dreamy. This event was easy for me. No massive mental challenges, so I was really stoked on that and the happy headspace I’ve been in.”
“I feel like everyone sees me one of one right now, and other people see me as one of five, but really I am one of a thousand,” continued Wright.” I have so many people I need to thank for contributing to my success. At the end of the day it is about the love for what I do and my family. This is really for them as much as for me.”
Although Conlogue will end her run with a 2nd place finish, she will continue to wear the Jeep Leaders Jersey into the next event as she remains in the 1st place position on the rankings. Throughout the competition, Conlogue continued to demonstrate a strong and consistent performance, as this marks her third straight final in the 2016 Championship Tour.
“I think if I started the leg off knowing I would get these results, I would have been stoked,” Conlogue said. “Obviously I wanted the win, but I am really stoked for Tyler. She had a great performance in that heat. I was just trying to get myself back in the game at the end there and was stoked to get a second shot. I am stoked to head into Brazil with the Jeep Leaders Jersey.”
Carissa Moore (HAW), three-time WSL Champion and last year’s event runner-up, was not able to advance to the Finals against Wright. Moore blazed out the gates to secure the lead against Wright with a 14.77 through the halfway mark. Wright, needing a 7.27, answered with a 7.57 in the last two minutes of the heat. Moore found a wave out the back, but was not able to complete the ride to defeat Wright.
Semifinal 1 saw Conlogue defeat Tatiana Weston-Webb (HAW). Conlogue fired with an 8.17 backed up by a massive 9.27 against the Hawaiian. Weston-Webb was put in a combination situation with a 12.17 two-wave combined score. Weston-Webb was not able to find the waves to challenge Conlogue and will exit the competition with a 3rd place finish.
Heat 4 of the Quarterfinals witnessed a superheat between Stephanie Gilmore (AUS), six-time WSL Champion, and Wright. Wright threw down two 8-point rides to put Gilmore in a combination situation. Gilmore was not able to find the waves to combat Wright’s scores, and will end her run at Margaret River with a 5th place finish.
“Earlier this morning I broke my favorite board and corked my arm a bit, so I was probably paddling a bit slower than I had hoped, but no excuses, there are great waves out there,” Gilmore said. “I was always going to wait for the second waves of the set, but Tyler would take the first ones and they seemed to be better. She is just so strong. I went down a board to a 5’10” and that was probably a bad idea. I probably should have gone up to a bit bigger. I will still keep pushing and nothing is impossible yet, but we will see.”
Weston-Webb eliminated Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS) in the opening heat of the Quarterfinals. Fitzgibbons got off to a slow start, while Weston-Webb locked in a solid score. Weston-Webb continued to better her scores throughout the heat to put Fitzgibbons in a combination situation and eliminate her from the competition.
“I did not really anticipate that one to go that way,” Fitzgibbons said. “It just really ran away from me. I paddled out and felt good, especially after the momentum up until the Quarterfinals, but it just felt like there were a lot of waves in the ocean, but I wasn’t on the good ones. Tatiana picked those nice ones with the walls and ran away with those 7s.”
The Men’s Quarterfinals saw a close match-up between Italo Ferreira (BRA) and Kolohe Andino (USA). Ferreira pulled out all the stops against Andino to secure a 17.96 two-wave combined score. Ferreira kept the pressure on Andino by forcing him into a combination situation. Andino was not able to turn in two new scores to get out of the combination. Ferreira also defeat CT heavyweight Gabriel Medina (BRA) in Heat 5 to make his way to the Semifinals.
Julian Wilson (AUS) dominated his heat against injury replacement Leonardo Fioravanti (ITA) to end his upset streak at Margaret River. Wilson showed why he is a Title contender with his back-to-back high scoring rides, including a 9.50 and an 8.67. Fioravanti fought hard to regain the lead, but was stuck in a combination situation.
Joel Parkinson (AUS) charged through the opening heat of the Men’s Quarterfinals against Nat Young (USA). Parkinson kept his clean lines to secure solid scores, including a massive tube that earned him an 8.00. Young earned a 14.24 two-wave combined score, but fell only 1.59 points short of defeating Parkinson.
“There is a bit of buzz around the event right now because everyone thinks we might have a chance at the Box tomorrow,” Parkinson said. “Whatever it is we will get the waves tomorrow. Main Break was pumping today, but fingers crossed we will get to go to the Box.”
Matt Wilkinson (AUS), current Jeep Rankings Leader, was eliminated from the competition by Nat Young (USA). Wilkinson was too patient throughout the heat and allowed Young to garner a solid lead. Young will advance to the Quarterfinals, and Wilkinson will lose out in a CT event for the first time in 2016.
“It has been a hectic day,” said Young. “I surfed my first heat and broke my board before the heat ended. I surfed it with a huge buckle in the middle of it. I dry docked it on the rocks, and I hit my arm, my back and my foot got cut up. I hit the reef again out there, so it has been a hectic day. I get so into getting as much out of every wave that I just go for it no matter what. It is maybe worth it, but I should probably slow down a bit.”
“The Aussie leg has been unreal for me, but obviously this was pretty disappointing,” Wilkinson said. “I just had a really slow heat and fell on one critical wave, but I am stoked to be coming out of the Aussie leg with a bit of a lead. That was unexpected. I feel like everything has clicked and I am feeling good. Hopefully this 9th will be my worst result.”
Event organizers will convene tomorrow at 6:30am local time for a possible 7am start.
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