BILLABONG PRO J-BAY : Top seeds star in pumping surf on Day 1
The top four seeds in the Billabong Pro J-Bay 2010 progressed directly to Round 3 after winning their opening encounters in what will go down as one of the best opening days of competition at Jeffreys Bay with pumping 2 to 2.5 metre waves peeling down the internationally acclaimed point at Supertubes.
Current World No. 1 and 9 x ASP World Champ Kelly Slater (USA), 2007 event winner Taj Burrow (AUS), reigning ASP World Champ Mick Fanning (AUS) and South Africa’s Jordy Smith took full advantage of the pristine conditions to produce a master-class in high performance surfing, carving powerful top to bottom turn combinations and ducking into and emerging from deep tubes.
It was Fanning who was the top scorer on the day, posting rides of 8.83 and 7.87 (out of 10) to amass a total of 16.70 (out of 20) and leave his opponents, wildcard Sean Holmes (Cape Town) and Roy Powers (HAW), in a combination situation where they could not overtake Fanning with one ride and needed to improve on both their best two scores.
“This year, you have to take every heat seriously,” Fanning said. “There are so many threats and even the rookies can do damage. I feel like I’ve been surfing well all year and I’m just focusing on every heat, and hopefully that takes me to a solid result.”
Bobby Martinez (USA), ranked No. 6 coming into the event, racked up the second best heat total of 16.37 and led the charge of the goofy-foot surfers (those riding with their right foot in front) who included Round 1 heat winners Frederick Patacchia (HAW) and Australians Adrian ‘Ace’ Buchan and the highly impressive rookie Owen Wright who fully justified the hype surrounding his debut on the ASP Dream Tour with phenomenal tube-riding and beyond vertical backhand turns.
The day got underway with local Jeffreys Bay standout Dale Staples clinching the coveted third and final wildcard by winning the VonZipper Superheat, defeating fellow St Francis Bay surfer Ryan Payne and international stars Heath Joske (AUS), who narrowly missed out on the opportunity to take on the world’s best surfers by finishing second, and fourth placed Keanu Asing (HAW).
Former 3 x ASP World Champion Andy Irons (HAW) recorded a heat-winning performance in his first heat at Supertubes for two years after taking a sabbatical in 2009 and Dane Reynolds (USA) produced his trademark mind-blowing progressive manoeuvres while rookie ASP World Tour campaigners Nate Yeomans (USA) and Matt Wilkinson (AUS), both goofy-footers, were deserving Round 1 heat winners.
“J-Bay is a special place for me,” Irons said. “I’ve had some of the best results of my career here and I’ve also had some of the hardest losses. To come back here after taking last year off and to get such amazing surf for Day 1 is a great feeling.”
It was not a good day for the wildcards though with Staples, Holmes and ASP Africa Pro Junior Champion Shaun Joubert (Mossel Bay) losing out to Burrow, Fanning and Slater respectively. Joubert and Staples were then eliminated from Africa’s most prestigious surfing event when they lost to Adriano de Souza (BRA) and Bede Durbidge (AUS) in the first two heats of Round 2 ,which were run at the end of today’s action The pair finished equal 33rd overall in the US $400 000 (approx R3 Million) event with earnings of $5 500 each.
The first heat when competition resumes pits wildcard Sean Holmes against current World No. 4 Jadson Andre (BRA), the winner of the last ASP World Tour event in his home country. The Capetonian has cut a swathe through the tops seeds in the Billabong Pro J-Bay on several occasions in the past, including twice reaching the quarterfinals, and will be confident of progressing to Round 3 again this year.
The call on when to resume competition will be made by contest director Mike Parsons at 7am on Friday. The prediction by Surfline, the official surf forecasters for the Billabong Pro J-Bay, is that dropping, but very contestable, surf will prevail on Friday along with favorable conditions.
All the action from the opening day of the Billabong Pro J-Bay can be viewed at www.billabongpro.com and also on your mobile phone at www.asptogo.com or download the iPhone application ASP ToGo from www.apple/iphone/ . Live and highlights footage is available on the channels of Fuel TV.
The 2010 Billabong Pro J-Bay has a waiting period that runs from 15-25 July and is proudly supported by Eastern Cape Tourism, Virgin Atlantic, Monster Energy, Vida e Caffe, Corona and Tavcor
Billabong Pro Jeffreys Bay Round 1 Results:
Heat 1: Adam Melling (AUS) 12.17, Taylor Knox (USA) 10.80, Luke Munro (AUS) 10.17
Heat 2: Andy Irons (HAW) 14.77, Jay Thompson (AUS) 10.56, Jadson Andre (BRA) 9.24
Heat 3: Nate Yeomans (USA) 15.83, Bede Durbidge (AUS) 13.74, Luke Stedman (AUS) 11.43
Heat 4: Dane Reynolds (USA) 15.30, Marco Polo (BRA) 12.97, Daniel Ross (AUS) 12.10
Heat 5: Bobby Martinez (USA) 16.43, Jeremy Flores (FRA) 13.37, Blake Thornton (AUS) 7.60
Heat 6: Tiago Pires (PRT) 15.23, Tim Reyes (USA) 13.27, Adriano de Souza (BRA) 9.07
Heat 7: Jordy Smith (ZAF) 16.37, Joan Duru (FRA) 11.90, Tom Whitaker (USA) 10.57
Heat 8: Kelly Slater (USA) 15.93, Damien Hobgood (USA) 14.40, Shaun Joubert (ZAF) 12.37
Heat 9: Taj Burrow (AUS) 15.20, Dale Staples (ZAF) 13.34, Kieren Perrow (AUS) 9.83
Heat 10: Mick Fanning (AUS) 16.70, Sean Holmes (ZAF) 10.27, Roy Powers (HAW) 8.33
Heat 11: Kekoa Bacalso (HAW) 13.60, Neco Padaratz (BRA) 9.60, C.J. Hobgood (USA) 9.17
Heat 12: Fredrick Patacchia (HAW) 12.60, Tanner Gudauskas (USA) 12.34, Patrick Gudauskas (USA) 11.27
Heat 13: Matt Wilkinson (AUS) 13.53, Dean Morrison (AUS) 11.76, Michel Bourez (PYF) 7.43
Heat 14: Chris Davidson (AUS) 15.17, Mick Campbell (AUS) 12.86, Brett Simpson (USA) 11.63
Heat 15: Adrian Buchan (AUS) 14.87, Ben Dunn (AUS) 11.50, Dusty Payne (HAW) 10.77
Heat 16: Owen Wright (AUS) 15.56, Travis Logie (ZAF) 13.93, Drew Courtney (AUS) 7.73
Billabong Pro Jeffreys Bay Round 2 Results:
Heat 1: Adriano de Souza (BRA) 15.70 def. Shaun Joubert (ZAF) 9.44
Heat 2: Bede Durbidge (AUS) 16.17 def. Dale Staples (ZAF) 14.67
Billabong Pro Jeffreys Bay Remaining Round 2 Match-Ups:
Heat 3: Jadson Andre (BRA) vs. Sean Holmes (ZAF)
Heat 4: Taylor Knox (USA) vs. Joan Duru (FRA)
Heat 5: C.J. Hobgood (USA) vs. Tim Reyes (USA)
Heat 6: Michel Bourez (PYF) vs. Blake Thornton (AUS)
Heat 7: Damien Hobgood (USA) vs. Marco Polo (BRA)
Heat 8: Kieren Perrow (AUS) vs. Jay Thompson (AUS)
Heat 9: Roy Powers (HAW) vs. Neco Padaratz (BRA)
Heat 10: Tom Whitaker (AUS) vs. Tanner Gudauskas (USA)
Heat 11: Jeremy Flores (FRA) vs. Brett Simpson (USA)
Heat 12: Daniel Ross (AUS) vs. Dusty Payne (HAW)
Heat 13: Luke Stedman (AUS) vs. Drew Courtney (AUS)
Heat 14: Luke Munro (AUS) vs. Travis Logie (ZAF)
Heat 15: Pat Gudauskas (USA) vs. Ben Dunn (AUS)
Heat 16: Dean Morrison (AUS) vs. Mick Campbell (AUS)
Issued on behalf of:
Billabong South Africa
Contact: Brendon Kegel
Telephone: +27 (0) 42 200 2747
Compiled and issued by:
Life’s a Beach Communications
PO Box 48272, Kommetjie 7976, South Africa
Tel: +27 (0) 21 783 4965
Fax: +27 (0) 86 684 6250
Mobile: +27 (0) 82 423 1964