La Cicer, Gran Canaria (Wednesday, May 16, 2012) – Organizers have called a halt to action at the ASP 3-Star Gran Canaria Santa Pro Junior at Playa de la Cicer, after the completion of Round 1. Conditions in the 1-2Ft range were on offer this morning and Vicente Romero (ESP) proved progressive surfing to be the key to scoring high in wind affected small waves.
Romero (ESP) 19, was the stand-out in today’s first round of competition at La Cicer. The Brazilian born Spanish resident, impressed for his first time in Gran Canaria, by posting both the highest single wave of the day, an impressive 7.50 out of 10, and the highest heat total of the event so far.
“It wasn’t easy this morning, but I’ve been training a lot for this event and with a good board under my feet I felt great out there”, Romero said. “I’m pretty confident and I’m looking for a big result here this week. I know most of the guys and have a couple friends competing too, so it’s good to be here. I had three good waves in my heat. My 7.50 was a cool wave on which I did a good first turn, followed by a reverse air and another turn to finish. I definitely had a lot of fun out there and today the jellyfishes didn’t bother too much so even better !”
Vicente Romero chose to come back from Brazil this year to live with his family and has established home in the Basque Country. He will be following the whole European Tour hoping for a break through towards the end of his Junior career.
“I came to Tenerife four years ago, but this is my first time competing here in Gran Canaria. I was born in Brazil but have double nationality I’m spanish too. I’ve been competing in Brazil on the Junior tour before, and this year I’m living in Spain near Sopelana with my family and I’ll surf on the European Tour.”
In the last heat of Round 1, Mateia Hiquily (PYF) 16 had a close-fought match-up and had to step-up his game to eventually post a 6.00 point ride and get the heat win over Lucas Jannier (REU). The young French Polynesian who recently was highlighted in the Surfer Mag “Hot 100″ list, didn’t disappoint this morning despite the difficult conditions.
“I started the heat thinking I’d get a couple small waves but they were just too fat and when I saw the other guys getting the sets I figured I needed to move to their peak and get the best ones too”, Hiquily said. “I ended up having a couple of fun waves scoring a 6.00 and a 4.50. It’s my first time competing in Europe and I’ve never been in the Canary Islands before. I arrived a couple days ago, and there are definitely a few fun waves around here, I think Gran Canaria has potential. It’s nothing like home though, we pretty much have only reefs in Tahiti.”
The talented goofy footer adapted to the beachbreak conditions and managed to overtake his opponents in the dying minutes of his Heat. With a strong newschool repertoire and abilities for barrel rides coming from Tahiti, we will see more of Mateia Hiquily during this 2012 European Junior season.
“I’m going to try to do the full European Tour, unfortunately I have to go back to Tahiti in between events as I’m taking the BAC (high-school exams) this year so I can’t stay in Europe for now. I have high expectations for this season, I know there’s a lot of competition with Vasco (Ribeiro) and Frederico (Morais) for example but I’m aiming for the top spot for sure !”
In Heat 7 of the Round of 80 this morning, it’s Saul Torres (CNY) 16, who made the crowds proud, representing well his Canarian fellow residents. Coming over from the East side of the Island, Torres had full local support and a homespot advantage. The local surfer had a better understanding of the conditions, which showed as he navigated through the best waves of his heat.
“It turned out really well for me and I caught some nice waves” Torres said. “The waves were a little soft but in the end I managed to get a few which was good because I got the good ones. I am motivated about being in the next round with the top seeds. Tomorrow I will do what I can and give it my all for sure.”
A first call will be made tomorrow Thursday 17th May at 9.30am for the start of Round Two. The 2012 Gran Canaria Santa Pro Junior will run from May 16-20 at La Cicer, Gran Canaria / Canary Islands. For more information, and all results, photos, video highlights, and press releases log-on to www.grancanaria.aspeurope.com
The Gran Canaria Santa Pro Junior is made possible with the support of the following event partners: La Santa Surf, the Consejería de Turismo del Gobierno de Canarias, the Patronato de Turismo del Cabildo de Gran Canaria, the Concejalía de Turismo del Ayuntamiento de Las Palmas de Gran Canaria and the Hotel Best Western Cantur. Also an extended thanks to Halcón Viajes, Armas, InterSport, Café Central y Oceanside, Cajasiete amongst others.
GRAN CANARIA SANTA PRO JUNIOR RD OF 80 RESULTS:
Heat 1: George Picking (GBR) 9.06, Javier Ascanio Ferna (CNY) 8.20, Marcos Carmona (ESP) 5.54
Heat 2: Harry Timson (GBR) 9.93, Luke Dillon (GBR) 9.50, Pedro Coelho (PRT) 5.87, Juan Ignacio Sebastia (CNY) 5.06
Heat 3: Tomas Fernandes (PRT) 9.27, Josh Piper (GBR) 8.50, Paul Monborne (FRA) 6.57, Kai Garcia (CNY) 4.66
Heat 4: Vicente Romero (ESP) 13.60, Simon Sew-Heng (REU) 6.10, Woody Bujon (FRA) 3.45, Vincent Vandeputte (BEL) 2.47
Heat 5: Arthur Lasse (FRA) 5.94, Maxime Bobet (FRA) 5.13, Jono Moreira (PRT) 3.60
Heat 6: Roberto D’Amico (ITA) 8.93, Derek Gomes (VEN) 7.14, Alexandre Baudin (ESP) 6.10, Miguel Villalba (ESP) 5.03
Heat 7: Saul Torres Ruano (CNY) 7.53, Guilherme Fonseca (PRT) 6.96, Timothee Bisso (GLP) 5.77
Heat 8: Mateia Hiquily (PYF) 10.33, Lucas Jannier (REU) 8.57, Juan Fernandez (ESP) 5.93, Francisco Duarte (PRT) 5.36