Tuesday 8 December 2009 – South Africa’s Travis Logie has qualified for the 2010 ASP World Tour, professional surfing’s highest level of competition, after a gruelling campaign that saw him finish No. 13 in the yearend ASP World Qualifying Series (WQS) rankings.
Logie, who spent four years amongst the world’s top 45 ranked surfers before dropping of the Dream Tour at the end of 2008, went into the final two WQS events in Hawaii ranked No. 11 and needing to advance through one heat to ensure his spot in the Top 15.
Elimination in his opening heats in both events left the 30-year-old Durbanite waiting on the sidelines as first Tanner Gudauskas (USA) and then Dusty Payne (HAW) overtook him. But the rest of his closest rivals were ousted in the subsequent rounds at Sunset Beach and Logie secured a well deserved place back at competitive surfing’s top table.
“I’m really stoked that all the hard work, training and travelling has paid off,” Logie said, shortly after arriving back in South Africa. “I’m really excited to be back on the tour for what will be my fifth year.”
Logie’s commitment to re-qualifying saw him compete in 21 of the 41 events on the 2009 WQS, the highest number by a South African and a total matched by only four of the nearly 1 000 other WQS members worldwide. He clinched a confidence-boosting victory in a 2-Star rated event in Australia early in the campaign before netting his biggest points haul in his home town when he placed 5th in the 6-Star Prime rated Quiksilver Pro Durban in April.
ASP World Tour title contenders Joel Parkinson and fellow Australian Mick Fanning along with Hawaiians Sunny Garcia and Dusty Payne fought out the final of the 6-Star rated O’Neill World Cup of Surfing in tricky 3 – 4 metre waves at Sunset Beach. Garcia, the 40-year-old veteran chasing a record 7th Vans Triple Crown of Surfing, opened his account with an incredible tube ride than earned him 9.47 points out of a possible 10 but could not find a second high scoring ride.
Parkinson clinched victory with rides of 7.0 and 6.17, matching Hawaiian legend Michael Ho’s record of three wins in the World Cup, and rocketed into the lead in the Triple Crown ratings, which he won last year. Garcia held on for second place in the event, which earned him a wildcard into the Billabong Pipeline Masters, with Fanning third and Payne a distant fourth.
Damien Fahrenfort posted the best results by a South African in the event, winning his opening encounter and then recording the highest heat total of Day 3, and the sixth highest total of the entire event – 16.27 out of 20 – before being ousted in the Round of 64.
Brandon Jackson went into the Hawaiian leg rated No. 15 on the WQS and in contention for an ASP World Tour spot. Like Logie, Jackson could not advance out of his first heats at Haleiwa and Sunset and dropped to No. 24 in the yearend rankings, which will give the 22-year-old from Durban North excellent seeding for the WQS contests in the first six months of 2010.
Royden Bryson (Cape Town) advanced through one heat at Haleiwa and none at Sunset to end the year ranked No. 36. Fahrenfort came in at No. 67 and Rudy Palmboom (Bluff), who won both his opening match-ups in Hawaii but was then eliminated in the Round of 96, closed his 2009 campaign rated No. 81.
Warwick Wright (Durban) was the highest ranked of the Saffas who did not compete in Hawaii at No. 81, followed by Antonio Bortoletto (Durban) at No. 87 and Daniel Redman (Umdloti) just outside the top 100 at No. 105
O’Neill World Cup of Surfing (Event No. 41 of 41)
Sunset Beach, Hawaii
1. Joel Parkinson (AUS) – $20,000 – 3,500 points
2. Sunny Garcia (HAW) – $10,000 – 3,063 points
3. Mick Fanning (AUS) – $5,100 – 2,625 points
4. Dusty Payne (HAW) – $4,900 – 2,494 points
ASP World Qualifying Series
2009 Yearend Rankings
1 Ross,Daniel AUS 15744
2 Gudauskas,Patrick USA 14876
3 Andre,Jadson BRA 14813
4 Melling,Adam AUS 14638
5 Wright,Owen AUS 14338
6 Munro,Luke AUS 13713
7 Thompson,Jay AUS 13638
8 Yeomans,Nathan USA 13419
9 Payne,Dusty HAW 13194
10 Simpson,Brett USA 13150
11 Wilkinson,Matt AUS 12850
12 Gudauskas,Tanner USA 12569
13 Logie,Travis ZAF 12344
14 Polo,Marco BRA 12331
15 Thornton,Blake AUS 12325
South Africans (in the top 150)
24 Jackson,Brandon ZAF 11431
36 Bryson,Royden ZAF 10213
67 Fahrenfort,Damien ZAF 8222
74 Palmboom,Rudy ZAF 7875
81 Wright,Warwick ZAF 7550
87 Bortoletto,Antonio ZAF 7101
105 Redman,Daniel ZAF 6451
125 Smith,Jordy ZAF 5644
130 Basnett,Ricky ZAF 5551
147 Richards,David ZAF 5246
Billabong Pipeline Masters
Stop No. 10 of 10 on the 2009 ASP World Tour
December 8 – 20, 2009
Fanning and Parkinson face off at Pipeline for 2009 ASP World Title
After nine events on the 2009 ASP Dream Tour, the race for the ASP World Title will culminate in a showdown between two lifelong friends at the final event of the season, the Billabong Pipeline Masters, which will also decide the Vans Triple Crown of Surfing, from December 8 – 20, 2009.
Mick Fanning, 28, former ASP World Champion (2007) and current ASP World No. 1, will face Gold Coast stable mate and current ASP World No. 2, Joel Parkinson, 28, in the hunt for the 2009 ASP World Title as the two battle a minefield of the world’s best surfers and Pipe specialists at the Billabong Pipeline Masters.
While the rest of the Top 45 fight for ratings points and prize-money and the 16 Pipeline specialists battle for prestige, only Fanning and Parkinson can win the 2009 ASP World title, with Parko having to finish two places ahead to overtake the current No. 1.
Jordy Smith, the current ASP No. 10, has been seeded into Round 3 of the event and will be going all-out to improve his yearend ranking. A top 8 finish in the ratings will see the 21-year-old Durbanite guaranteed of preferential seeding for the entire 2010 season while a top 5 place will earn significant performance bonuses from his sponsors.
Greg Emslie, rated No. 31 and just 137 points shy of the No. 27 spot that will automatically qualify for the 2010 Dream Tour, starts in Round 2. The East London based veteran campaigner needs to advance to Round 3 to have any chance of an incredible 10th year in the top fight, while progressing to the last 16 will probably ensure him of a spot.
David Weare occupies the No. 41 position and still has a mathematical chance of requalifying. But the Durbanite starts in Round 1 against Pipe standout Hank Gaskell, who won the Xcel Pro at Sunset Beach last month, and Weare faces the daunting task of having to place first or second at Pipeline to move into the Top 27 in the rankings.
All the action from the Billabong Pipeline Masters can be followed live at www.billabongpro.com starting at 8pm (SA time) daily.
The massive swell currently pounding the North Shore of Oahu has scoured all the sand off the Pipeline Reef which should produce epic waves for the event. While the waiting period starts today and runs until 20 December, it is unlikely that the event will get underway before the swell starts to drop on Thursday.
See www.aspafrica.com for more details on the Billabong Pipeline Masters, including the draw for the first three rounds.
Billabong Pro Maui presented by Hawaiian Airlines
Stop No. 7 of 7 on the 2009 ASP Women’s World Tour
Honolua Bay, Maui/Hawaii
December 8 – 20, 2009
Rosanne Hodge in contention to requalify for 2010 ASP Women’s World Tour
The Billabong Pro Maui presented by Hawaiian Airlines will kick off the event’s 13 day waiting period tomorrow and the globe’s finest 17 competitive female surfers will take on Maui’s famed righthand pointbreak of Honolua Bay to do battle for the Vans Triple Crown title as well as the valuable ratings points towards requalification for the 2010 ASP Women’s World Tour.
Stephanie Gilmore (Australia) has already clinched an unprecedented third straight ASP Women’s World Title in just her third year on the tour and Hawaiian teenager Alana Blanchard leads the Triple Crown ratings.
South African eyes will be focused on Rosanne Hodge, 22, from East London who is currently ranked No. 9 and needs to finish in the Top 10 on the yearend leaderboard to requalify for a fourth successive year on the ASP Women’s World Tour.
Hodge has finished third and fifth in her last two years in this event and needs to stave off the challenge of the eight girls currently ranked behind her to remain at the highest level of women’s surfing.
Attention will also be on the performances of Coco Ho (HAW), Paige Hareb (NZL) and Rebecca Woods (AUS). If that trio all end in the Top 10 in the yearend rankings, then South Africa’s Nikita Robb, who finished the year ranked No. 9 of the Women’s WQS, will qualify for her first year on the ASP Women’s World Tour, potentially giving SA two representatives on the Women’s Dream Tour for the first time since it was introduced in 1992.
All the action can be followed live at www.billabongpro.com/maui09/ and the waiting period runs from today until 20 December.
Quiksilver Eddie Aikau set to run as MAMMOTH waves hit Hawaii
The Quiksilver In Memory of Eddie Aikau, fueled by Monster Energy, the only big wave contest to be sanctioned by the Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP), is set to run at Waimea Bay in Hawaii today as mammoth waves in the 8-13 metre range (25-40 foot) batter the North Shore of Oahu in Hawaii.
Featuring 28 selected invitees, including South Africa’s Grant ‘Twiggy’ Baker, and 26 alternates, all drawn from amongst the world’s best big wave chargers, the ‘Eddie’ honours the memory of legendary Hawaiian surfer and lifeguard Eddie Aikau.
The event is on standby to start at 7pm (SA time) tonight and further details, including a live webcast of the action, profiles of the athletes, history of the event and much more can be found at http://live.quiksilver.com/2009/eddie/
Photo courtesy Quiksilver
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The Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) is the governing body of professional surfing. Crowning surfing’s undisputed world champions since 1976, the ASP sanctions the following tours: the ASP World Tour, the ASP Women’s World Tour, the World Qualifying Series (WQS) and the World Longboarding, Junior and Masters Championships. The ASP is dedicated to showcasing the world’s best surfing talent in a variety of progressive formats and has revolutionized the way the world watches surfing via their webcasts. The organization is divided into seven different regions: Africa, Asia, Australasia, Europe, Hawaii, North America, and South America.