GRANDE PLAGE, Lacanau – France (Saturday, August 18, 2012) – The fifth day of competition started this morning in Lacanau with the Round of 32 in clean 3-4Ft waves offering barrels and room for manoeuvers to some of the World’s Best. After a long midday break due to the extremely low tide, the event resumed in the afternoon to complete the round and move all the way into the quarter-finals that decided the last four who will battle it out for the event win tomorrow.
Filipe Toledo (BRA) 17, was on fire today starting his day with a very convincing heat where he found two barrels to net the highest heat total of the entire event so far, an incredible 17.33 out of 20. The Brazilian flying man took it to the airs in his later heats and earned his spot in the semi-finals with two high excellent scores in the quarter-finals.
“I’m feeling tired for sure, but also very excited !” Toledo stated. “Those waves are pretty good for airs, I’m trying a lot of them this week and I’m pretty stoked to make them. I’ve had a semi in Newquay and a quarter at the US Open so I’ve had good results but I’m still trying to win a big event ! It’s my first time here and I’m loving it ! I had an event in Hossegor in 2010 but never here in Lacanau. This is pretty much like my homebreak so I’m feeling good. It’s a really beautiful place with plenty of beautiful people, I love it !”
Glenn Hall (IRE) 30, was the first surfer to qualify for the semi-finals after defeating his good friend the Australian Jay Thompson. Sooruz’s team rider and event’s favourite Hall had a hard time finding his first solid score that he eventually earned with a succession of powerful turns on a fun looking lefthander that ran all the way through to the inside.
“It’s obviously a good feeling to be in the semis,” started Hall. “I don’t want to be too happy now I really want to keep going and try to win another event I’d be stoked ! I’m loving the waves out there and it was really fun to have a heat with ‘Bottle’, he’s one of my good mates ! It’s harder in a four-man heats cause you can kind of have hassling situations but in a man-on-man it’s totally cool you don’t have those awkward moments really..”
Focused on the main task at hand, Hall hasn’t paid too much attention to the other competitors who have qualified today for the remaining heats of the event and will be looking to perform to his best abilities and outsurf his opponents when competition resumes.
“I don’t even know who’s in those other quarters, I’m trying not to think of those things and just focus on doing my stuff.. I’ve got a really good board, I feel great, my sponsor Soöruz is doing the event and they’ve been really cool so I’ve been hanging out with them and the family, just having a good time !”
Jack Freestone (AUS) 20, entertained the crowds in the second quarter-final today when he found a long-running righthander that allowed him to launch a massive air-reverse which he completed in the air and landed perfectly before attacking the lip a couple times more and finishing in the shorey with another aerial manoeuver.
“I’m really happy,” Freestone said. “It’s my first result in Lacanau and I’m glad to make it through that one ! After my good first wave I kind of kept falling off on the ones I should have capitalized on and you know I got that little one at the end that sealed the deal which was pretty good..”
After an excellent fifth place in the South-African Prime event last month, Freestone struggled to perform as well in the following competitions and is now assured to get another strong result on the board to climb a few spots on the ASP World Rankings. A familiar face in the young up-and-comers field, Freestone has displayed today an impressive repertoire of aerial skills.
“Everyone’s human, we can all win or lose so.. The thing is you got to do what the wave allows you to, you got to take it from there. You can’t really go out expecting something cause most of the time it’s not going to happen, you really just got to adapt to the conditions and try to do your best !”
In the last and slowest heat of the quarter-finals it was Dion Atkinson (AUS) 26, that came out the winner and fourth semi-finalist in Lacanau. While the first half of the heat saw almost no waves ridden, things started heating up quickly around the 10 minute mark and Atkinson took advantage of a couple sets that finally showed up in the lineup.
“It was a pretty slow heat and I was up against Lincoln Taylor who I’ve traveled with my last three or four years so it was always going to be a tough one and a little bit of a nerve wracking one too.” Atkinson said. “We both didn’t get too many good waves and luckily enough I got the score at the end so I’m stoked.”
No stranger to the beautiful beachbreaks of La Grande Plage in Lacanau, Atkinson who’s performed in the past here will be looking to go all the way when the event finishes tomorrow to collect the crucial 2000 ranking points on offer along with a generous $20,000 of prize-money.
“I actually got second here like four years ago, so to make the semis and have a shot at going one better is even better so we’ll see what happens tomorrow but I’m stoked and hopefully it can bring some fun through ! I think I’m standing like in the 50th overall so this will probably shoot me up the ranks a bit and do a lot for the confidence !”
Tomorrow’s call is set to 2pm for the Final Day of the ASP 5-Star Sooruz Lacanau Pro. With only three heats remaining, event officials want to find the best possible conditions with the incoming tide in the afternoon.
The ASP 5-Star Sooruz Lacanau Pro is scheduled from August 14-19, 2012. in Lacanau. For all results, photos, video highlights, press releases log on to http://www.sooruzlacanaupro.com.
For additional ASP information log on to www.aspeurope.com
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The Sooruz Lacanau Pro is made possible with the support of the following event partners: Airwalk, Ville de Lacanau, Lacanau Surf Club, Region Aquitaine, Conseil Général de Gironde, Fédération Française de Surf, Super U, Sport +, Medococean, Smurfit Kappa, RTL2, 20Minutes, MCM, GoPro, Unbottle Yourself amongst others.
UPCOMING SOORUZ LACANAU PRO SEMI-FINALS MATCHUPS:
Heat 1: Glenn Hall (IRL) vs Jack Freestone (AUS)
Heat 2: Filipe Toledo (BRA) vs Dion Atkinson (AUS)
SOORUZ LACANAU PRO QUARTER-FINALS RESULTS:
Heat 1: Glenn Hall (IRL) 13.83 def. Jay Thompson (AUS) 8.43
Heat 2: Jack Freestone (AUS) 14.50 def. Tanner Gudauskas (USA) 12.34
Heat 3: Filipe Toledo (BRA) 16.26 def. Mitch Crews (AUS) 13.67
Heat 4: Dion Atkinson (AUS) 10.47 def. Lincoln Taylor (AUS) 10.00
SOORUZ LACANAU PRO ROUND OF 16 RESULTS:
Heat 1: Jay Thompson (AUS) 10.37, Jack Freestone (AUS) 10.07, Marlon Lipke (DEU) 8.14, Balaram Stack (USA) 7.86
Heat 2: Tanner Gudauskas (USA) 14.60, Glenn Hall (IRL) 11.20, Wiggolly Dantas (BRA) 10.80, Leonardo Neves (BRA) 10.43
Heat 3: Filipe Toledo (BRA) 13.33, Dion Atkinson (AUS) 12.86, Davey Cathels (AUS) 9.40, Mitchel Coleborn (AUS) 8.43
Heat 4: Lincoln Taylor (AUS) 12.20, Mitch Crews (AUS) 12.17, Peterson Crisanto (BRA) 11.93, Tomas Hermes (BRA) 10.00
SOORUZ LACANAU PRO ROUND OF 32 RESULTS:
Heat 1: Marlon Lipke (DEU) 11.10, Leonardo Neves (BRA) 10.20, Tim Macdonald (AUS) 9.53, Jesse Mendes (BRA) inj.
Heat 2: Jack Freestone (AUS) 12.27, Wiggolly Dantas (BRA) 11.93, Joan Duru (FRA) 9.33, Matt Banting (AUS) 7.16
Heat 3: Tanner Gudauskas (USA) 14.93, Jay Thompson (AUS) 11.17, Romain Cloitre (FRA) 9.10, Carlos Munoz (CRI) 4.60
Heat 4: Glenn Hall (IRL) 10.37, Balaram Stack (USA) 9.67, Marc Lacomare (FRA) 8.63, Steven Pierson (PYF) 4.93
Heat 5: Filipe Toledo (BRA) 17.33, Lincoln Taylor (AUS) 13.34, David Do Carmo (BRA) 7.04, Alan Jhones (BRA) 3.26
Heat 6: Mitchel Coleborn (AUS) 10.00, Mitch Crews (AUS) 9.30, Michael Dunphy (USA) 6.73, Teppei Tajima (JPN) 6.50
Heat 7: Peterson Crisanto (BRA) 17.00, Davey Cathels (AUS) 14.00, Thiago Camarao (BRA) 10.60, Flavio Nakagima (BRA) 9.13
Heat 8: Tomas Hermes (BRA) 13.83, Dion Atkinson (AUS) 12.34, Stu Kennedy (AUS) 10.37, Vincent Duvignac (FRA) 8.64