ASP World Tour ratings leader Kelly Slater (USA) was 7.31 points away from clinching his ninth ASP World Title when he was beaten by Australia's Adrian Buchan in their French final bout yesterday. Slater now has to secure an equal 9th finish at next week's Billabong Pro Mundaka to clinch crown No.9.
“I was one wave away [from the title],” Slater said. “One wave away is a lot closer than two heats but we'll see how we go.”
Slater won his last world title in Mundaka and will do so again this year should he advance out of Round 3. If he doesn't, and reigning ASP World Champion Mick Fanning (AUS) or World No. 2 Taj Burrow win the event, the race will continue to Brazil. Slater will match-up with wildcards in the early rounds.
“In Mundaka for some reason I haven't had trouble in those wildcard heats but in Brazil I have before,” Slater said. “Taj and Mick haven't won this year but they've both won in Brazil and they've gotten seconds and thirds in Mundaka, so those are good contests for those guys. But worse case scenario for me, it will be narrowed down to one guy at the next event.”
Bobby Martinez (USA) has won the event for the last two years – the only two times he's competed in Mundaka. Martinez finished equal 5th in France and now sits 7th on the ratings.
“It's so tough because I just got lucky with waves and my luck is bound to run out sometime so it could be this year,” Martinez said. “Mundaka has been a cool place to me the last couple of years and it will always be cool no matter what happens but I've never done good in France and then I've done good in Spain so I'm just hoping it's not the other way around this year since I just did alright in France.”
The Billabong Pro Mundaka waiting period stretches from next Monday, September 30 to Sunday, October 12.
Top 10 ASP World Tour Ratings going into the Billabong Pro Mundaka:
1. Kelly Slater (USA) - 7852 points
2. Taj Burrow (AUS) - 6002 points
3. Bede Durbidge (AUS) – 5668 points
4. Adriano De Souza (BRA) – 5426 points
5. Joel Parkinson (AUS) - 5373 points
6. Mick Fanning (AUS) - 5310 points
7. Bobby Martinez (USA) - 5092 points
8. CJ Hobgood (USA) - 4880 points
9. Adrian Buchan (AUS) - 4719 points
10. Jeremy Flores (FRA) - 4407 points
Well if you follow the WCT you have to be thinking WTF is going on with Andy Irons? I mean Bruce is really not doing anything unless the waves are pumping, case in point, Somwhere in Indo, but he is also not trying to requalify for the tour so that is that. Andy on the other hand is just not into it at all. In trestles he was out there taking off on waves fins first etc, now in France at the Quikilver pro, he doesn't even show for his heat. Hell his trainer, doesn't even know where the hell he is. Bruce said that Andy is the kind of guy where if he cant win the whole thing he wont be in it. I can understand that, I mean there was a time not long ago when the tour seemed to start off and instantly was all about the Kelly/Andy rivalry, Now Kelly is beyond dominant and it seems that Andy has hung up his leash and given up.
Here is my problem with that, Andy is on the WCT, there are a ton of guys out there who would kill to be in his shoes and surf the tour, if he isn't going to even show up, why not make it official and let them throw in an extra wildcard at the rest of the events? With his points the way they are, he will have no issues requalifing, so why not take some time off, give another surfer their dream break, get some perspective and come back next year guns blazing? Andy's attitude at the moment, kind of reminds me of the rebel without a cause bullshit you did in High school, not the actions of one of the world best surfers and a role model for so many upcoming surfers!
THE WAVE: The main contest break of La Nord in Hossegor has been known to toss up a 10-to 12-foot face or two when autumn swells arrive. Extremely tidal, the soft sand beaches of the region offer the world's best the perfect canvass for progressive surfing and reckless abandon.
PERKS: Topless tanning, mile after mile of potentially firing beachbreaks, and locals doing their utmost to get you drunk.
PERILS: Chocolate-filled croissants, crepes mixed with oodles of red wine do not a thin man make, and you try to concentrate on your heat when you have to walk through a beach full of stunning topless babes on your way to the water. It's a trip and fall over on the fins disaster in the making.
APRES SURF: The Rock Food and Dick's Sand Bar are two of Hossegor's most happening hotspots. They virtually roll out the red carpet and treat the surfers like royalty when they come to town. That and also the fact that Spain is a short one-hour ride away can lay claim to an eve or two of good times.
WCT HISTORY: Quiksilver was granted a French ASP World Tour event license in 2001 and the rest is history. Hossegor has wailed during the autumn waiting period annually since its inception.
NOTABLE: The Irons brothers met in their first-ever man-on-man final in France in 2004. still hurting after losing his heat against little brother Bruce the event prior, Andy was more than amped to beat his brother and win the event. He repeated the win in '05 for good measure.
2007: Mick Fanning ''AUS''
2006: Joel Parkinson ''AUS''
2005: Andy Irons ''HAW''
2004: Andy Irons ''HAW''
2003: Andy Irons ''AUS''
2002: Neco Padaratz ''BRA''
2001: Cancelled due to 9/11 Tragedy
I have made another little video challenge for you all! I made a the following video featuring 1 surfer, but added an effect to make it look like a cartoon. If you know who the surfer is and are even enough of a surf nut to name the dvd that this clip is from, drop a comment on this post and you will be recognized by all as a surf trivia god!
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Hell I dont know what to say, this was probably the greatest heat I have ever seen.
Taj threw down a 9.0 and a 9.63 within the first 10 minutes of the 35min final at trestles today, scores like that are 99% of the time deal closers in heats.
Kelly was so deep in combo land that it was almost time to tune out and go to sleep! But it's Kelly Slater, probably the only surf in the top 44 to love combo land! Kelly snapped into a medium sized wave went berserk and threw down a 9.7.
Kelly still needed a 8.93 to take the heat, he then threw down an 8.3 punched the water when the score was announced. Looked like Taj took a deep breath at this point. Then with a minute to go, Kelly took off under Taj's priority and slammed down a 9.2 went switch foot and threw out a huge claim even before the score was announced. Kelly went into the beach to get mobbed by the crowd and carried up the beach. Taj scratched for anything to try and top a 9.0 but the ocean didn't offer up anything in time.
Basically Kelly only needs to make it through 2 or 3 heats in any of the remaining event on the tour this year to be able to officially take an unprecedented 9th world title.
If their is a devil, then Kelly is intimate with him!
End result Taj 18.63 vs Kelly 18.97
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The new site will include:
- Surfboard reviews and information from all the main surfboard companies/shapers
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- A killer Surf forum (all ready up and running, so why not sign up today)
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- And killer surf links.
If you cant wait till the official opening, then drop by today and see our sample site, we have put up a few pages to wet your taste buds!
If you have an extra minute or so, drop a comment here and let us know what you think.
Posted by Jeff at 5:09 AM
What an awesome heat, there was so much buzz about this heat you would think it was the final! It was awesome to see the man Garcia back in a WCT event, looking super fit and focused. Garcia is currently in a great position on the WQS to re qualify for the world cup tour in 09`.
Kelly opened up the exchange with a great inside wave, the wave was pretty average, but Kelly is Kelly right? He looked super planted on that tiny little board he was riding, which though it looked like a 5`8" was actually a 6` pin tail. Throwing the tail out super committed, super critical, the wave went all the way threw and Kelly pulled down a 7 point ride.
Sunny replied with a short ride, but that signature, Sunny power hack to post a 6 point ride.
There were a few throw away rides then Kelly slammed out a 9.33, taking a sweet set wave all the way through, doing so many turns and riding it so far in that he stood there for a minute thinking about whether to paddle out or do a run around.
Sunny came back with possible the best left of the event, throwing down pure power turns right in the pocket again and again to score an 8.0 and pull himself out of combo land.
Sunny and Kelly looked more like 2 mates having a free surf then a world title contender and a legend trying to re qualify!
Awesome surfing from 2 of the sports most well known and admired ambassadors.
In the end Kelly moved onto round 4 and one step closer to clinching that 9th world title, love him or hate him, that is freaking awesome!
The Boost Mobile Pro presented by Hurley scored perfect 3-5 foot waves for the duration of round one and the first two heats of round two. Lower Trestles in Southern California hosted the worlds top 46 surfers for the seventh stop on the World Championship Tour of Surfing. The perfect A-frame peak produced world class waves and long rip-able walls for the best in the business to let loose and show case their ability. With such perfect and playful conditions the Boost Mobile Pro, turned into the Boost Air Show with the majority of surfers turning their focus on high risk high reward, fin busting moves. Defending Champion Kelly Slater continued his untouchable surfing, posting the highest heat score of the day (18.60).
The rest of round two and the first few heats of round three should hit the water by 8am tomorrow, (local California, Pacific Standard Time PST) with predicted swell to continue to build until Wednesday and hang around for the rest of the week.
Contest is ON for Tuesday 9/9/08 at 8am, California time.
UPCOMING ROUND 2 HEATS for Tuesday 9/8:
Heat 3: Andy Irons (HAW), Yadin Nichol (AUS)
Heat 4: CJ Hobgood (USA), Ricky Basnett (ZAF)
Heat 5: Jeremy Flores (FRA), Jihad Khodr (BRA)
Heat 6: Aritz Aranburu (EUK)
Heat 7: Travis Logie (ZAF)
Heat 8: Heitor Alves (BRA)
ROUND 1 RESULTS:
Heat 1: Kai Otton (AUS) 13.67, Jordy Smith (ZAF) 13.04, Travis Logie (ZAF) 11.70
Heat 2: Bobby Martinez (USA) 13.50, Damien Hobgood (USA) 11.24, Aritz Aranburu (EUK) 3.03
Heat 3: Adriano de Souza (BRA) 15.90, Taylor Knox (USA) 14.66, Jihad Khodr (BRA) 8.00
Heat 4: Daniel Ross (AUS) 12.67, C.J. Hobgood (USA) 10.74, Kieren Perrow (AUS) 10.70
Heat 5: Andy Irons (HAW) 8.57, Roy Powers (HAW) 14.33, Ricky Basnett (ZAF) 7.73
Heat 6: Bede Durbidge (AUS) 14.84, Ben Dunn (AUS) 11.43, Brett Simpson (USA) 16.23
Heat 7: Joel Parkinson (AUS) 17.47, Tim Reyes (USA) 11.17, Yadin Nicol (AUS) 15.17
Heat 8: Kelly Slater (USA) 18.60, Dayyan Neve (AUS) 13.47, Shane Beschen (USA) 12.00
Heat 9: Mick Fanning (AUS) 17.90, Tom Whitaker (AUS) 7.90, Rob Machado (USA) 11.17
Heat 10: Taj Burrow (AUS) 12.67, Chris Ward (USA) 10.56, Sunny Garcia (HAW) 14.50
Heat 11: Jeremy Flores (FRA) 13.50, Dane Reynolds (USA) 14.47, Heitor Alves (BRA) 9.50
Heat 12: Bruce Irons (HAW) 6.50, Mikael Picon (FRA) 11.60, Rodrigo Dornelles (BRA) 10.90
Heat 13: Adrian Buchan (AUS) 13.27, Tiago Pires (PRT) 12.67, Ben Bourgeois (USA) 14.10
Heat 14: Luke Stedman (AUS) 13.73, Pancho Sullivan (HAW) 12.30, Luke Munro (AUS) 10.93
Heat 15: Fredrick Patacchia (HAW) 11.00, Jay Thompson (AUS) 12.20, Royden Bryson (ZAF) 15.43
Heat 16: Dean Morrison (AUS) 14.0, Mick Campbell (AUS) 9.67, Neco Padaratz (BRA) 8.0
ROUND 2 RESULTS:
Heat 1: Taj Burrow (AUS) 18.50, Shane Beschen (USA) 9.0
Heat 2: Bede Durbidge (AUS) 15.33, Rob Machado (USA) 12.50
The upcoming Boost Mobile Pro presented by Hurley may be the closest thing eight-time ASP World Champion and ratings leader Kelly Slater (USA) has to a home court advantage on the ASP World Tour.
Held at Lower Trestles in San Clemente, California from September 7-13, 2008, the 7th of 11 events on this year's ASP World Tour is the only elite tour stop in the continental U.S.A. Slater hails from Florida.
Trestles is probably [the closest thing I have to a home break on tour],Slater said. It is the only mainland U.S. event and it's been probably the most consistent event year to year for me. I've loved Trestles since I was very young.
Slater has featured in the Boost Mobile Pro final for the last four years, winning in 2005 and 2007 and finishing second in 2004 and 2006. Having claimed four of six events on this year's ASP World Tour, it is quite likely that Slater will win an unprecedented 9th ASP World Title in 2008.
In fact, had he not suffered his second hiccup of the year and posted an equal 17th finish at the last ASP World Tour stop in Bali, Indonesia, Slater would have been mathematically capable of clinching in California something that has never been done.
I know the numbers and possibilities roughly in my head, Slater said. I would love to wrap this thing up at any point but, yes, Trestles would have been really nice.
Despite his early exit in Bali, Slater maintained a healthy ratings lead when perennial title contenders like World No. 2 Joel Parkinson (AUS) and three-time ASP World Champion Andy Irons (HAW) bowed out early too.
Bali was a gift to me in the end, Slater said. A good result at Trestles could really set my momentum back up. A mess-up could really rattle and shake things up for me. I didn't think I'd be looking at this the way it is now though, so it's all fine from here on out.
Parkinson is the closest thing Slater has to a spoiler at this point. The 2002 and 2004 runner-up to the ASP World Title beat Slater in the final to win the 2004 Boost Mobile Pro but has not earned an ASP World Tour victory since taking top honors in France in September of 2006.
Despite making it to the quarterfinals or better in 12 of the last 14 events, Parkinson has not featured in a final in close to two years a stark contrast to Slater who has made eight finals and won five events since Parkinson last stood atop a podium.
It's been a while since I had my last tour win, Parkinson said. There is no easy explanation but I do know that I am feeling fit, I do have the right attitude and I am going to be ready to compete. I've won the event before and know that I have to be 100% on my game if I want to repeat that.
Parkinson's consistency has secured him his No. 2 rating, and even if Slater looks like a shoe-in for the title, he hasn't completely conceded just yet.
The facts speak for themselves, Kelly is the form surfer this year and is rightfully well in front on the leader board, Parkinson said. That doesn't mean that I am going to sit on my laurels and hand it to him. There is a lot at stake at every event and I am not just going to sit back and let Kelly have it.
This is the 100th post on "Your Local Surf"! So I have made a little video challenge for you all! I made a the following video featuring 1 surfer, but added an effect to make it look like a cartoon. If you know who the surfer is and are even enough of a surf nut to name the dvd that this clip is from, drop a comment on this post and you will be recognized by all as a surf trivia god! I plan on doing this little challenge each month from now on. Seeing how this time is the first time "The animated Surfer Challenge" has run, I have started it off with a pretty easy one...The next Challenges will get progressively harder! Are you up to it?