ZARAUTZ, Basque Country (Thursday, September 2, 2010) – The San Miguel Pro Zarautz presented by Euskaltel ran through to complete Round One of competition after being forced to wait 48 hours to kick-off due to lack of swell. With consistent 2-3ft peaks on the Eastern bank, event officials gave the green light to commence this Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) sanctioned event shortly after having to relocate event staff to the second judging tower in front of the peak.
Waves in the 2-3ft range offered contestable conditions for the commencement of Round One. Variable winds and the shifting tide, at times made conditions tricky for the strong international field.
With the highest combined two wave heat total of 16.43 (out of a possible 20) Brent Dorrington (AUS) 23, is looking for a solid result to compensate for a slow first half to his 2010 season. With loads of potential to make heats, Dorrington displayed what he is capable of in the tricky conditions today, pulling big turns and airs to score his pair of excellent rides.
“I got that first wave and did an air at the end with a few turns before that so I was happy with that. Then I got that last one and that was what I went out trying to do, to basically find two good ones. It was hard to tell which ones were going to be the good ones out there. If you saw any little wall coming down the line you had to go for it. If the section holds up alright then you can definitely do some airs.”
“I haven’t had any results in the Primes yet so I am just trying to get what I can and as many points as possible to build it all up for the end of the season.”
Marlon Lipke (DEU) got his campaign off to a perfect start in his early morning bout. Opening his account with two 7s followed by an 8.5 out of a possible 10, Lipke controlled the 25-minute clash from start to finish. Being patient with his wave selection and choosing only potentially high scoring waves, the scores given were a pleasant shock to the system.
“I was surprised with the scores,” commented Lipke. “I didn’t know they were going to be that high but I think I got the best waves of the heat because they opened up a little bit. I felt a bit tight from the drive early this morning coming down from France so I missed a lot of my last turns because my legs felt a little bit weak. I am really positive and with these scores today it has given me some confidence and I’m looking forward to my next heat.”
Coming off a win last week in Pantin, Billy Stairmand (NZL) made it through his first up heat appearance with a strong finish placing first ahead of Edouard Delpero (FRA) who also advances to Round Two. Having a slow start to the heat, Stairmand had all eyes and pressure on him not to lose out in Round One. Building on his scores and confidence Stairmand finished with two solid 7 point rides to get his San Miguel Pro Zarautz presented by Euskaltel campaign up and running.
“It is really easy to go from a win to a first round loss and with the waves today it is a bit of a lucky dip really. Luckily I got a couple towards the end of the heat and made it.”
“Last week has given me a confidence boost but actually it is quite nerve racking trying to back it up and not lose in the first heat,” explained Stairmand. “I have got this first one out of the way so hopefully I can progress from here. My board is going good again and I don’t know what the waves are doing over the next days but I definitely want to make a few more heats.”
Norman Landa (EUK) also won his pass into Round Two in a low scoring tactical battle. Getting the upper hand on his opponents with a solid 5.83 point ride, Landa left no room for anyone to slip ahead of him. Finding another set wave Landa claimed first place and lead the charge of Basque surfers to make it through to tomorrow including Indar Unanue, Eneko Acero and Karlos Gomez.
“To get through a heat in first place is always a good thing especially when the heat started with very few waves during the first 10 minutes. I was lucky to get one of the waves in that set that came through which gave me a 5.83 (out of a possible 10) and the lead.”
“Because there weren’t many waves I started to mark a bit more my opponents and then another set came through and I got my backup score and hung on until the end.”
Odirlei Coutinho (BRA) surfed strongly in his mid-afternoon clash. With conditions slightly improving Coutinho laid down a series of backhand turns to score an 8.33 and a two wave heat total of 15.26, one of the highest of the day.
“I’m stoked to get through. It’s tough but now it is better with some small rights coming in. Mitch Coleborn surfed really well the right and the other guys too but I caught some good waves. My boards are so good right now and this one my brother made for me. I believe in this board, I surf so easily with it. I am happy to be in Zarautz again after not competing here for two years.”
“That 8 point ride was great for me,” continued Coutinho. “I had to fight against Cheyne (Willis) for it but it was mine and I did a nice bottom turn with a strong first turn and then another with a final turn. It is so hard here because everyone can surf so well in these small waves.”
Imanol Yeregi (EUK) 14, got his chance to compete in his first ever ASP 6-Star event. Jumping off the alternate list and into his heat, Yeregi gave it his best shot and although finishing 4th used today’s experience to help with his surfing development.
“I am really happy to have got a start even though I didn’t do too well but I tried my hardest. Two years ago I competed here in this contest but today is my first 6-Star. I train here almost every day so I know the wave and that can help. There is a great atmosphere here with a very high level of surfing.”
Surfers competing at the San Miguel Pro Zarautz presented by Euskaltel are looking for valuable ASP World Ranking Points and for the European contingent they are at stop nº 8 of 12 on the ASP European Men’s Series which also has points up for grabs.
For all results, videos, daily highlights, photos and news log-on to www.aspeurope.com
San Miguel Pro Zarautz presented by Euskaltel Round 1 Results
Heat 1: Tonino Benson (HAW) 12.34, Paulo Moura (BRA) 9.43, Christophe Allary (REU) 7.83, Alex Gironi (EUK) 3.23
Heat 2: Marlon Lipke (DEU) 15.77, Charles Martin (GLP) 13.20, Brad Ettinger (USA) 12.33, Adrien Valero (FRA) 8.04
Heat 3: Maxime Huscenot (FRA) 13.83, Jason Torres (CRC) 9.44, Borja Agote (EUK) 7.00, Omer Bar (ISR) 5.77
Heat 4: Abdel El Harim (MAR) 10.24, Karlos Gomez (EUK) 10.00, Ryah Arthur (USA) 8.20, Alessandro Piu (ITA) 6.04
Heat 5: Manuel Selman (CHL) 13.33, Tim Boal (FRA) 13.07, Romain Laulhe (FRA) 7.56, Marcos San Segundo (EUK) 5.27
Heat 6: Jean Da Silva (BRA) 12.27, Taylor Thorne (USA) 8.03, Dylan Southworth (MEX) 5.83, Kevin Sullivan (HAW) 4.70
Heat 7: Kai Barger (HAW) 14.10, Jose Maria Cabrera (CNY) 10.60, Rudy Marechal (FRA) 6.84, Heath Joske (AUS) 2.66
Heat 8: Eneko Acero (EUK) 13.47, Dede Suryana (IDN) 13.14, Txaber Trojaola (EUK) 10.30, Antonio Marques (CNY) 5.16
Heat 9: Andre Silva (BRA) 15.17, Damien Chaudoy (REU) 13.00, Kieran Horn (USA) 11.80, Roland Lefeuvre (FRA) 4.30
Heat 10: Norman Landa (EUK) 9.56, Adrien Toyon (REU) 9.44, Alex Ribeiro (BRA) 9.43, Joao Guedes (PRT) 7.83
Heat 11: Odirlei Coutinho (BRA) 15.26, Mitch Coleborn (AUS) 13.67, Joackim Petersen Guichard (NOR) 11.46, Cheyne Willis (HAW) 6.27
Heat 12: Billy Stairmand (NZL) 14.90, Edouard Delpero (FRA) 12.83, Bruno Rodrigues (BRA) 11.30, Tristan Guilbaud (FRA) 7.74
Heat 13: Eduardo Fernandes (PRT) 14.10, Frederico Morais (PRT) 10.34, Jay Quinn (NZL) 6.73, Nic von Rupp (DEU) 5.60
Heat 14: Indar Unanue (EUK) 11.50, Ruda Carvalho (BRA) 9.70, Miguel Ximenez (PRT) 7.10, Luca Petersen Guichard (NOR) 6.57
Heat 15: Jano Belo (BRA) 11.84, Pablo Gutierrez (ESP) 11.54, Hugo Savalli (REU) 9.87, Alexander El Naib (DEU) 1.00
Heat 16: Cory Ziems (AUS) 13.24, David Weare (ZAF) 11.60, Blake Jones (USA) 10.77, Julian Cuello (CNY) 8.77
Heat 17: Bernardo Miranda (BRA) 15.43, Medi Vemenardi (REU) 13.54, Parrish Byrne (AUS) 6.60, Imanol Yeregi (EUK) 6.47
Heat 18: Jules Thomet (FRA) 12.27, Chase Wilson (USA) 10.60, Casey Brown (HAW) 8.84, Eric Castaldo (USA) 4.27
Heat 19: Brent Dorrington (AUS) 16.43, David do Carmo (BRA) 13.63, Jatyr Berasaluce (EUK) 12.30, Andre Oziol (BRB) 6.47
Heat 20: Klee Strachan (ZAF) 14.60, Vincent Duvignac (FRA) 12.27, Tiago Camarao (BRA) 10.53, Lars Musschoot (BEL) 8.00
Heat 21: Jack Perry (AUS) 8.87, Jared Thorne (USA) 8.77, Rhys Bombaci (AUS) 7.44, Madison Williams (AUS) 6.40
Heat 22: Glen Hall (IRL) 11.83, Alan Stokes (GBR) 5.87, Filipe Jervis (PRT) 5.33, Jay Davies (AUS) 2.73
Heat 23: Shaun Joubert (ZAF) 10.93, Brendon Gibbens (ZAF) 9.00, Hugo Debosc (REU) 8.23, Dege O’Connell (HAW) 7.20
Heat 24: Richard Christie (NZL) 14.30, Nick Riley (AUS) 9.67, Russell Molony (AUS) 9.53, Mohammed Berrada (MAR) 8.23