The Lemon Next To The Pie
Author: Tracks Magazine
First thing one notices when making the drive into Margaret River’s beach side community of Prevelly Park, is the brutal damage an out of control fire can cause. There’s something wild about Margaret Rivers as it is with its consistent and powerful swells (thanks to thousands of kilometers of uninterrupted ocean) – but seeing it’s bushy surrounds burnt to a cinder adds another almost alien planet feel to the joint. Once I’d made it to the surfers point and cast my out over the line-up I knew, unlike the landscape, nothing had changed there.
The waves that greeted us for day one of the men’s event were consistent and solid, but not yet big. That will change though as the swell report for the Telstra Drug Aware Pro is a good one. Real good. I asked head commentator and local legend Jake Patterson how many of his boards he’s loaned out so far? “All of them!” He succinctly replied.
The Raging Bull put together a solid heat of surfing to progress to the round of 48. Pic: ASP/Robertson
The big (long interval) swell is expected to kick in over the next few days and groom the edges of this somewhat messy shorter interval swell [seconds between waves].
To say the weather report has inspired a high level of “froth” would be an understatement, but most competitors know getting ahead of them selves would be a grave mistake. Progressing through the round of 96 the first hurdle they must face if they want to enjoy the Champaign conditions expected later in the week – as a local bloke told me, “You can’t rescue the damsel if you don’t slay the dragon first”. Finding this out the hard way were two big name World Tour surfers, Matt Wilkinson, who lacked good wave selection, and Brett Simpson.
Compare the backhand bottom turns... Owen Wright doing his thing on the right. Pic: ASP/Robertson.
Unfortunately for Brett, his pain was the source of train-wreck like entertainment for those watching from the cliffs (and online). Simpo’s Margaret River experience a horror show from the get go. The talented natural-footer’s first mistake was a real rookie error – failing to tie off a back-up board to the buoy in the channel. Something all three of his competitors were sure to do pre-heat. His 30 minutes of pure joy included a broken board, a sprint paddle in to run back up the stairs and borrow a board of Ace Buchan’s, then a paddle all the way back out, only to then drop in and incur an interference call. Finished? Not yet. On the buzzer the luckless Californian went right, got folded on the close-out and busted Ace’s fresh back up stick into two messy pieces of torn glass. Ouch.
Fast-forward though the draw and the big winners include Josh Kerr, who pipped a rampaging Mark Occhilupo in heat eight. Fellow Australian Owen Wright who smashed heat 1. Brazilian Raoni Monteiro, who matched power for power in heat 10. And surprise, surprise, Kelly Slater who made a mockery of the challenging conditions to free surf his way to the highest heat score of the day (16.60) on a 5’9” five finned Al Merrick blade in heat 12. With two minutes to go and with the heat in the bag Kelly took off on a peaky right that broke more to the left side of the reef than the usual. A delayed bottom turn, that was the personification of quality surfing, was capped off by powerful carving 360 through the lip. Full stop.
For more information, visit www.telstradrugawarepro.com
TELSTRA DRUG AWARE PRO MEN’S ROUND OF 96 RESULTS:
HEAT 1: Owen Wright (AUS) 16.16, Joan Duru
(FRA) 11.43, Jerome Forrest (AUS) 9.66, Alain Riou
HEAT 2: Jay Quinn (NZL) 11.43, Patrick Gudauskas (USA) 11.16, Perth Standlick (AUS) 9.44, Maxime Huscenot (FRA) 9.10
HEAT 3: Tom Whitaker (AUS) 15.00, Messias Felix (BRA) 8.70, Alex Ribeiro (BRA) 7.57, Brett Simpson (USA) 5.73
HEAT 4: Adrian Buchan (AUS) 12.57, Gabe Kling
(USA) 12.60, Jay Thompson (AUS) 11.30, Masatoshi Ohno
HEAT 5: Damien Hobgood (USA) 14.53, Billy Stairmand (NZL) 12.27, Royden Bryson (ZAF) 9.90, Thomas Woods (AUS) 5.76
HEAT 6: Blake Thornton (AUS) 13.50, Hizunome Bettero (BRA) 12.00, Matt Wilkinson (AUS) 10.84, Flavio Nakagima (BRA) 7.56
HEAT 7: Dion Atkinson (AUS) 12.40, Jadson Andre
(BRA) 10.17, Charlie Brown (BRA) 8.43, Vincent Duvignac (FRA) 7.43
HEAT 8: Josh Kerr (AUS) 15.00, Mark Occhilupo (AUS) 14.27, Shaun Joubert (ZAF) 9.57, Kai Barger (HAW) 8.67
HEAT 9: Bede Durbidge (AUS) 14.50, Nathan Yeomans (USA) 9.94, Hodei Collazo (EUK) 8.27, Yujiro Tsuji (JPN) 5.40
HEAT 10: Raoni Monteiro (BRA) 13.97, Mitch Crews (AUS) 13.67, Luke Davis
(USA) 13.07, Andre Silva (BRA) 11.83
HEAT 11: Fredrick Patacchia
(HAW) 10.70, Olamana Eleogram (HAW) 9.96, Brandon Jackson (ZAF) 8.34, Jesse Mendes (BRA) 7.84
HEAT 12: Kelly Slater (USA) 16.60, Tom Innes (AUS) 10.50, Mitchel Coleborn (AUS) 5.93, Marc Lacomare (FRA) 4.97
HEAT 13: Heath Joske
(AUS) 10.20, Taj Burrow (AUS) 8.23, Aritz Aranburu (EUK) 7.50, Luke Campbell (AUS) 4.27
HEAT 14: Willian Cardoso (BRA) 12.70, Charles Martin (GLP) 11.34, Thiago Camarao (BRA) 10.84, Tim Reyes
HEAT 15: Brent Dorrington (AUS) 13.46, Adam Melling (AUS) 12.67, Halley Batista (BRA) 10.66, Cory Lopez (USA) 9.87
HEAT 16: Kieren Perrow
(AUS) 14.33, Granger Larsen (HAW) 13.33, Stu Kennedy (AUS) 10.74, Matt Banting (AUS) 9.83
HEAT 17: John John Florence (HAW) 16.13, Lincoln Taylor (AUS) 9.90, Wiggolly Dantas (BRA) 6.92, Dean Bowen (AUS) 4.10
HEAT 18: Jack Freestone (AUS) 13.03, CJ Hobgood (USA) 12.93, Nat Young (USA) 11.10, Kiron Jabour (HAW) 9.03
HEAT 19: Gony Zubizarreta
(ESP) 12.33, Jonathan Gonzalez (CNY) 11.97, Travis Logie (ZAF) 11.43, Daniel Ross (AUS) 9.44
HEAT 20: Tomas Hermes (BRA) 6.70, Nic Muscroft (AUS) 6.50, Luke Cheadle
(AUS) 6.20, Heitor Alves (BRA) 1.77
Read the Full Article