SALVADOR / Bahia, Brazil (Thursday, September 01, 2011) – Marco Fernandez (BRA) was the standout performer in the first day of competition for the ASP World 2-Star Surf Eco Festival presented by Billabong in Salvador, Bahia, Brazil. Fernandez scored a perfect 10-point ride for the highest single-wave score and also the highest heat-wave total scoring a 17.00 (out of a possible 20 points) at Jaguaribe Beach in consistent waves in the 2-3 foot (.5-1.0 meter) range.
“It’s the first 10, I ever got in my life and I’m so stoked,” said an ecstatic Fernandez, who is also one of the 6 surfers that qualified for the ASP World Pro Junior Tour decided earlier this week. “I was lucky because I started off the heat with two good waves and I was able to let loose to get that 10.”
The top seed of the event and former ASP South America champion (2009) and 2-time ASP World Pro Junior champion (2004 and 2007), Pablo Paulino (BRA) scored a 15.10 (7.25 and 7.85) in the first heat of competition, which also qualified him into Round 2.
“I’m happy to have surfed two good waves at the beginning of the heat and then just used some heat strategy to hold on to the win,” said Pablo Paulino. “I arrived earlier in the week to watch the Pro Junior event and it was great to watch. All of the kids are surfing at such a high level using lots of modern and technical maneuvers. It’s a pleasure to be surfing against them now.”
Another Pro Junior surfer that began the 2-Star event with a victory was Ian Gouveia (BRA). Gouveia arrived in Salvador leading the South America Pro Junior Series ranking but was defeated by Filipe Toledo (BRA) in the Final. Now in the main event, Gouveia hopes to improve his ASP World Ranking.
“Yesterday (Wednesday) I got a little depressed from losing the Pro Junior Final,” said Ian Gouveia. “But I qualified for the World Pro Junior which was my main objective and now I can relax and just have some fun here.”
On the first day of competition, all 16 Heats of Round 1 were completed. Round 2 which includes the 32 surfers that qualified is scheduled to begin at 10am local time on Friday. In the first heat to hit the water, Pablo Paulino (BRA) will be faced up against Alan Johnes (BRA), Cesar Aguiar (BRA) and Nathan Brandi (BRA) in an all-Brazilian heat.
The Surf Eco Festival is brought to you by Dende Productions and Axe Mix and presented by Billabong and is sponsored by the State of Bahia, the City of Salvador and by Petrobras, Skol, Azul Airlines and Monster Energy. Together, the event organizers combine sports with local artistic presentations to promote environmental education throughout the week at Jaguaribe Beach. Live: www.surfecofestival.com.br and www.aspsouthamerica.com.br