- 09 November 2011 | Bodyboarding
Memorable six-foot offshore waves boosted the hearts of the best bodyboarders in the world competing at the Encanto Pro Puerto Rico. Every heat saw competitors hit the big sections and get catapulted through the air or receive nasty wipeouts.
Six winners from Round 1 - Amaury Lavernhe from Reunion Island, Jeff Hubbard from Hawaii, Jared Houston from South Africa, Brazilian Eder Luciano and Australians Mitch Rawlins and Ryan Hardy - won their second round heats. Two wins in the leaderboard rounds guarantee a passage into the top 16 cut-off after round three.
The conditions appeared to be staying the same when a joint decision by the event organisers. The IBA head judge and the riders committee decided to run Round 3, immediately after the second round.
Half way through the second heat of round three, a rain storm came in from the north, bringing with it strong onshore wins. The conditions deteriorated rapidly and the event was put on hold at the end of heat three.
Damian King stayed in the water long after the heat was over, choosing to catch some waves on his own. The two-times world champion and recently crowned 2011 Drop Knee world champion, had two thirds from the previous rounds and needed a win to make the top 16 cut-off and requalify for next year’s world tour, came third.
Every heat saw riders hitting the lip and flying through the air. But none higher than Brazilian, Eder Luciano. He took off on a medium sized wave and timed the ramp perfectly for an invert, getting flung high above the lip and landing smoothly back on the open face – only to have the lip pitch over his head and swallow him up.
Frenchman Pierre-Louis Costes and six-times world champion from Brazil, Guilherme Tamega, also won their second round heats.