BOCA BARRANCA, Costa Rica (Thursday, April 8, 2010) – The second stop on the Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) North America Longboard Qualifying Series (LQS) 3-Star Costa Rica PLA Pro completed Round 1 today at the idyllic lefthand pointbreak of Boca Barranca in Costa Rica and saw Brazilian standout Rodrigo Sphaier (BRA) lead the opening round with an impressive 16.60 out of 20 heat tototal while advancing through to take on the event’s main seeds.
Surfers competing on the ASP LQS compete in each of their respective regions in attempt to finish within the top of the ratings to qualify for the prestigious ASP World Longboard Tour (WLT). Once qualified, they earn the right to battle the globe’s finest longboarding talent for the title of ASP World Longboard Champion.
Sphaier is currently competing at Boca Barranca for the first time, but his early arrival to the famous lefthander paid dividends when he combined stylish, classic longboarding with new-school flare to clinch the day’s top scores.
“I got here 10 days ago to get used to this wave,” Sphaier said. “It’s a perfect wave and I’m happy to have a contest here. It’s good to surf the opening round to get comfortable before I surf against the top guys in the event.”
Sphaier, who is currently fresh off of a major ASP LQS 6-Star event victory in Peru, is hoping to carry the momentum through from his impressive victory into the Round of 32, where he will face former ASP World Longboard Champion Josh Constable (AUS).
“Winning the 6-Star in Peru was a highlight for me and a great way to start my year,” Sphaier said. “Hopefully I can surf well again here in Costa Rica.”
Still to surf in the event is reigning ASP North America Longboarding Champion Kai Sallas (Waikiki, HAW), 28, and American talent Taylor Jensen (Oceanside, CA), 26, while reigning two-time ASP Women’s World Longboard Champion Jen Smith (San Diego, CA), 24, will lead the women’s competitors as the top seed.
The ASP LQS 3-Star Costa Rica Pro will reconvene tomorrow morning at 5:30am local time for a possible 6am start.
For additional ASP information log on to www.aspworldtour.com or www.aspnorthamerica.org