ANDORA, Italy (Saturday, November 19, 2011) – The ASP World Longboard Tour (WLT) Bear Pro presented by Jeep relocated to Andora, 180km North West of Levanto allowing for Round One of competition to be completed after nine consecutive lay days had plagued the event. A small low pressure pushing through a building south swell was enough to offer clean 1-2ft (50cm) waves at the main beach of Andora.
Event officials and surfers were excited with the prospect of commencing the Bear Pro presented by Jeep and met early at the beach to set up a make shift site in front of the best peak available. The ‘green light’ to start was given at noon with the action in the water heating up from the first to last heat.
Kai Sallas (Waikiki, HAW) 30, put on a brilliant performance in the tricky conditions with huge roundhouse cutbacks, flowing carves and critical nose rides to claim the day’s highest two-wave combined total of 17.30 out of 20. Sallas managed to generate speed and power in conditions that played havoc on many of the competitors.
“It is such a relief to finally get the contest on its way and it was such a stressful week thinking we might not even run with no waves coming. There was a lot of work involved to come down here and actually find a pretty good, long, fun longboarding wave for us. It couldn’t be better to walk away with a good win and some good scores. It felt great to surf again after over a week of not surfing. It is very good.”
Taylor Jensen (Coronado, CA) 27, top scored pulling of two hang-ten nose rides blended with rail turns to clinch a near perfect 9.25 (out of 10) in his first up appearance at the Bear Pro presented by Jeep. Currently nº2 on the WLT ranking, Jensen shook off early heat nerves and adapted to the small waves to take down Bear team rider Ben Haworth (GBR) 22.
“I was definitely a little shaky there at the start but a couple came through and I got lucky. It was a smaller wave and it doubled up and hit the sand bar real nice and just sort of ran off. I got lucky to get in two little ‘tens’ and a couple of turns and in these conditions I guess it is what it takes to win.”
“I grew up in Coronado,” continued Jensen regarding his abilities in small wave surfing. “This is probably the best day for there so we used to surf in small junky wind surf. So I am used to it and just getting used to being on the board after nine days of not surfing. Definitely a shaky start.”
Antoine Delpero (FRA) 25, kicked off proceedings with a polished display of classical longboarding with long flowing turns combined with technically perfect nose rides. Currently sitting in 5th position on the ASP WLT rankings Delpero overcame his dislike for being in the first heat of the day and now moves closer to his ultimate goal of challenging for this year’s WLT title.
“I hate first heats. It is always difficult to put yourself into the contest and your brain into the contest so mentally difficult but I got through this one and I am going to concentrate on the rest.”
“I am very happy that all the organisers made the move to come here,” stated Delpero. “We can finally get into the water and do some heats. The waves are very small and I had a strange start because I was paddling and I didn’t catch it so I lost priority. Then a couple of waves came to me and I had it good. I felt good in the water and I am very happy to pass this first heat.”
Eduardo Bage (BRA) 34, survived a crucial heat against Mitch Surman (AUS) to automatically requalify for the 2012 ASP WLT. The lack of swell during the waiting period and the possibility of not running would have left Bage off the tour. The relocation to Andora was a decision that favoured the likable Brazilian who is travelling with his French wife and their three small children.
“There was a little bit of pressure in that heat because I was trying to requalify for next year. Now I am definitely in for next year so I am really happy. I heard the tour may start in Brazil so it is good to be in. I am feeling confident for the next heat and I am going to see with the judges what they have to say about what I need to do to improve my scores.”
In these small conditions Bage knew that anything could happen and was on top of his game with improving scores as his confidence grew during the heat. Nose riding and powerful carves highlighted his Round One performance to earn a 16.00 (out of 20) two-wave combined total.
“The waves are small and that is dangerous. If the guy is good it will be difficult to beat him. It is really small and the lighter guys are going to have a better advantage but it is like this. If there are no waves, then there are no waves. It is our job to do what we can and if they run the contest we must be there.”
Due to the remote location no LIVE webcast is available however LIVE scores from each heat are being transmitted. A first call will be made at 6.30am tomorrow Sunday 20 November, for a possible start to Round Two through to the crowning of the 2011 Bear Pro presented by Jeep champion shortly after.
Highlights from today’s action, the pre-event free surf sessions and from the previous days of the waiting period can be seen by clicking on ‘videos’ at www.bearpro2011.com as well as the LIVE broadcast of ‘The Morning Show’ each day at 9am with interviews, forecasts and all the latest news on activities at the ASP WLT Bear Pro presented by Jeep.
The ASP Bear Pro presented by Jeep will run from November 10 to 20 and will be webcast LIVE with the ‘Morning Show’, all results, photos and daily highlights seen at www.bearpro2011.com
The Bear Pro presented by Jeep is proudly produced by Reset Communications in association with Area 51, the Liguria Region, the Province of La Spezia and the town of Levanto. For further information regarding the ASP Bear Pro presented by Jeep log onto www.aspeurpe.com
Upcoming ASP WLT Bear Pro presented by Jeep Round Two Matchups
Heat 1: Antoine Delpero (FRA) Vs Eduardo Bage (BRA)
Heat 2: Justin Bing (ZAF) Vs Rodrigo Sphaier (BRA)
Heat 3: Kai Sallas (HAW) Vs Thimotee Creignou (FRA)
Heat 4: Damien Casteras (FRA) Vs Duane De Soto (HAW)
Heat 5: Taylor Jensen (USA) Vs Ned Snow (HAW)
Heat 6: Jefson Silva (BRA) vs Amaro Matos (BRA)
Heat 7: Harley Ingleby (AUS) Vs Ben Skinner (GBR)
Heat 8: Edouard Delpero (FRA) Vs Tony Silvagni (USA)
Round One ASP WLT Bear Pro presented by Jeep Results
Heat 1: Antoine Delpero (FRA) 16.75 Def. Matt Aldridge (AUS) 10.75
Heat 2: Eduardo Bage (BRA) 16.00 Def. Mitch Surman (AUS) 11.50
Heat 3: Justin Bing (ZAF) 13.00 Def. Jared Neal (AUS) 11.10
Heat 4: Rodrigo Sphaier (BRA) 12.25 Def. Alessandro Demartini (ITA) 4.70
Heat 5: Kai Sallas (HAW) 17.30 Def. Shohei Akimoto (JPN) 8.65
Heat 6: Thimotee Creignou (FRA) 15.00 Def. Adam Griffiths (GBR) 11.50
Heat 7: Damien Casteras (FRA) Def. Bradley Weare (ZAF) 8.75
Heat 8: Duane De Soto (HAW) 10.25 Def. Marco Boscaglia (ITA) 5.00
Heat 9: Taylor Jensen (USA) 17.25 Def. Ben Haworth (GBR) 9.00
Heat 10: Ned Snow (HAW) 10.90 Def. Remi Arauzo (FRA) 10.70
Heat 11: Jefson Silva (BRA) 9.25 Def. Rusty Keaulana (HAW) 5.55
Heat 12: Amaro Matos (BRA) 8.25 Def. Yasuaki Higashikawa (JPN) 6.70
Heat 13: Harley Ingleby (AUS) 15.25 Def. Zak Lawton (GBR) 5.95
Heat 14: Ben Skinner (GBR) ‘walk through’
Heat 15: Edouard Delpero (FRA) 10.85 Def. Andre Derizans (HAW) 4.50
Heat 16: Tony Silvagni (USA) ‘walk through’ Def. Cole Robbins (USA) inj.