PRAIA DA VILA, Imbituba, Santa Catarina / Brazil (Thursday, Jun 2, 2011) – Under sunny skies and light winds, Round of 48 for the ASP PRIME SuperSurf Internacional Prime was completed in clean conditions with waves breaking in the 2-3 foot range (1 meter) at Praia da Vila, Imbituba. The Round of 24 was also scheduled for today (Thursday), but was postponed because of deteriorating conditions caused by the high tide.
A new big swell is forescast to hit the Santa Catarina coastline on Friday afternoon or Saturday morning, for the conclusion of the second consecutive ASP PRIME event in Brazil.
“Our goal was to at least finish the Round of 48 during low tide,” said Head Judge, Luli Pereira. “We still have good conditions but the waves will get weaker with the incoming tide. We still have three days in our waiting period and we only need two days to finish the event. By the athletes’ request, we decided to wait for the new swell to arrive this weekend.”
The highlight of this morning’s competition was Miguel Pupo (BRA) who attacked the perfect right-handers with consecutive snaps on his backside, scoring a 9.57 out of a possible 10. He also added an additional 7.83 for the highest heat-wave total of the day – 17.40 out of 20 points.
“I’m really focused and I’ve been finding good waves here,” said Miguel Pupo. “I hope to keep winning my heats. Now the man-on-man heats begin and it’s a whole new game. With three other guys in the water, it´s tough because you have to fight for position. With only one other surfer, you need more strategy and it´s almost like a chess-match.”
Miguel Pupo is sitting at number 31 of the Top 32 surfers that qualify for the ASP World Tour after the mid-season rotation. Pupo and Josh Kerr (AUS), who is not competing at Imbituba, are threatened by Yadin Nicol (AUS) in 33rd place and Granger Larsen (HAW) in 34th place that qualified directly into the Round of 24.
Gabriel Medina (BRA) who is positioned at number 39 in the ASP World Ranking, won the first heat of the day and is also qualified for the Round of 24.
“The conditions are a little tricky,” said Gabriel Medina. “The waves are small and a little mushy, but I was able to win my heat on two good rights. The man-on-man heats are much better. You can pick your waves better and try to be more aggressive.”
In the last heat of the day, Richard Christie (NZL) qualified in a highly contested heat over Neco Padaratz (BRA), Cory Lopez (USA) and Tanio Barreto (BRA).
“The waves are smaller but the conditions are still really good,” said Richard Christie. “You’ve just got to be patient and choose the right waves. But I think I was a little lucky since I started well and was able to relax for the remainder of the heat. I’m really happy with the win because it was against stiff competition with Cory (Lopez) who’s really experienced and Neco (Padaratz) who knows these waves well.”
A total of US$ 250,000 in prize money will be distributed and the winner will receive 6,500 points for the ASP World Ranking. Out of the initial 96 competitors, only 24 athletes remain in contention for the title.
The SuperSurf Internacional Prime 2011 is presented by Peugeot and produced by Editora Abril. This ASP Prime event is also sponsored by the State of Santa Catarina and FUNDESPORTE and with the support of The City of Imbituba, FECASURF and the Surfer’s Association of Imbituba with exclusive coverage by ESPN Brasil.
ROUND OF 24 – SUPERSURF INTERNACIONAL PRIME:
Heat 1: Raoni Monteiro (BRA) vs. Yuri Sodre (BRA)
Heat 2: Jesse Mendes (BRA) vs. Mason Ho (HAW)
Heat 3: Tom Whitaker (AUS) vs. Bernardo Miranda (BRA)
Heat 4: Ben Dunn (AUS) vs. Hizunome Bettero (BRA)
Heat 5: Gabe Kling (USA) vs. Wiggolly Dantas (BRA)
Heat 6: Granger Larsen (HAW) vs. Ricardo Santos (BRA)
Heat 7: Royden Bryson (ZAF) vs. Austin Ware (USA)
Heat 8: Damien Hobgood (USA) vs. Yadin Nicol (AUS)
Heat 9: Gabriel Medina (BRA) vs. Tomas Hermes (BRA)
Heat 10: Leonardo Neves (BRA) vs. Dylan Graves (PRI)
Heat 11: Miguel Pupo (BRA) vs. Neco Padaratz (BRA)
Heat 12: Richard Christie (NZL) vs. Jay Quinn (NZL)