LA SAUZAIE, France (Saturday, April 24, 2010) – The Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) 4-Star Protest Vendee Pro was forced to call a lay day due to very small conditions. With the swell predicted to increase tomorrow event officials decided to wait for more favourable conditions before running the quarter-finals through to the crowning of this year’s Protest Vendee Pro champion.
Small 1-2ft (0.5m) waves greeted the remaining 8 surfers in the Protest Vendee Pro 2010. As the tide pushed in there was a slight improvement allowing organisers to run the two semi-finals of the Aloha Cafe/Atlantic Lezard Expression Session.
Contest director Julian Hamel met with head judge Iain Buchanan early this morning to monitor conditions before making a final call to wait for the swell to pick up tomorrow.
With countless years of experience at the main break of La Sauzaie Hamel based the decision on the favourable swell prediction and the increase in wave period a factor extremely important when predicting conditions here at La Sauzaie.
“The fore for today was for calling off today because of the small swell and the wind is predicted to get stronger this afternoon which would erase any trace of surfable waves.”
“Next call is at 12 midday tomorrow because we have a swell increase through the day and high tide is in the ning of the afternoon so we should have some really good waves on the pushing tide and the going out tide.”
“It goes from 2.5 to 4.5 ft and the period jumps from 8 to 14 seconds so we should have chest to over-head sized sets during the finals. We have 7 heats to run plus the final of the expression session so there is plenty of time. For the event organisers and the surfers I think we will have the best waves at the best times so it will be alright.”
Alain Riou (PYF) finds himself in quarter-final nº2 when competition resumes tomorrow for the first time at the Protest Vendee Pro. In fact it is the very first occasion that Riou has gotten any further than the opening round.
Keen to keep the momentum going Riou had his day off planned to maintain focused on the main event as well unwind a little in one of the expression sessions.
“We might see a little wave later on but it’s going to be better tomorrow and there are only 7 heats to run so we have time and it’s good to wait for better conditions.”
“I might have a little surf and see what it is like and it’s good to have a rest day too because we had to surf a couple of heats yesterday and for sure it will be good tomorrow.”
“This is the first time I have got through a round here at Vendee,” commented Riou. “I’m not so lucky here, I usually get knocked out in the first round, so it’s good to be in the quarters and get over the jinx on me here.” (laughs)
First call will be at 12 midday tomorrow with Rudy Palmboom (ZAF) up against Frederic Robin (REU) in Quarterfinal 1.
The Protest Vendee Pro is stop nº2 of 12 in the ASP European Star Series 2010 which will eventually crown this year’s European men’s champion.
UPCOMING QUARTERFINAL MATCH-UPS PROTEST VENDEE PRO:
QF 1: Rudy Palmboom (ZAF) Vs Frederic Robin (REU)
QF 2: Alain Riou (PYF) Vs Joan Duru (FRA)
QF 3: Glen Hall (IRL) Vs Romain Laulhe (FRA)
QF 4: Marc Lacomare (FRA) Vs Romain Cloitre (FRA) (ASPWORLDTOUR:14066)