With Round 1 coming to an end and the first couple of heats of Round 2 being completed by day’s end, it was a day of high performance surfing with reigning ASP World Junior Champion Kai Barger (Maui, HAW), 19, dominating proceedings.
Barger, who won his maiden ASP World Junior title last January in Australia, showed he was more than ready to compete against the world’s best surfers, the Maui resident posting an impressive 17.64 point heat score including a near perfect 9.27 point ride.
“It was a pretty tricky heat and I wasn’t confident when it started,” Barger said. “Then I got a first wave that was good enough, the second was better and the third even better so I had a lot of fun in the end. I got a bit lucky to get the first one and I was super stoked wave after wave so I just tried to stay out of trouble and any interference.”
Barger, who has been awarded a wildcard by the Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) to start in Round 2 of every major ASP World Qualifying Series (WQS) events this year thanks to his world crown, was surfing his first heat at Lacanau today and came up with fantastic surfing.
“I was really nervous and I thought I was going to lose actually,” Barger said. “It’s great to have that opportunity to enter the events along with the top seeds and it gives me a year of practice amongst the WQS. With the points I will have at the end of this year I will be able to do the whole tour next year. I haven’t had any good results, actually haven’t made it past Round 3 at any of the big events so far.”
Barger’s performance left all his peers amazed and cheering the Hawaiian on every of his flying maneuvers, taking off in perfect new-school skateboarding-like style to land several air-reverse maneuvers. Following the final heat of Round 1, where Barger and Thiago Camarao (BRA) offered the best show of the thus far, was event top seed Tim Boal (Anglet, FRA), 25, the Frenchman opening Round 2 of competition.
Boal, who is on his rookie year amongst the ASP Top 45 where he sits No. 30 at the moment, answered with the same high performance surfing, the Anglet resident posting a couple of excellent rides including a 9.00 point wave score to win Heat 1 with a promising 17.17 point heat score, ahead of ASP Grade-2 Oakley Pro Junior champion Charles Martin (GLP), 18.
“I hadn’t surfed for ten days before today and I am glad I made it through,” Boal said. “The waves were not that good but I got those two rides and I was pretty happy with the scores. It’s good to be surfing in an event with no pressure and to keep up the training. And it was especially a fun heat competing against Charles (Martin) who is a good friend of mine. He told me he was aiming at comboing me, ha ha… He will soon but I’m glad it wasn’t this time, sorry Charly (Laughs)!”
Boal, who placed equal 9th last year in the Sooruz Lacanau Pro, will be looking to better his result and net a bit of confidence before heading to California for the ASP World Tour event in September.
Showing the same talent and impressive skills today to go over the nine-point mark were several competitors including other Hawaiian Sebastian Zeitz as well as Thiago Camarao (BRA), both competitors impressing the ASP judging panel to advance through to the next round.”
SOORUZ LACANAU PRO ROUND 2 RESULTS
Heat 1: Tim Boal (FRA) 17.17 pts, Charles Martin (GLP) 12.60 pts, Richard Christie (NZL) 11.17 pts, Alex Gray (USA) 10.00 pts
SOORUZ LACANAU PRO ROUND 1 RESULTS
Heat 1: Richard Christie (NZL) 15.84 pts, Mark Mathews (AUS) 11.93 pts, Madison Williams (AUS) 10.90 pts, Geoffroy Henno (FRA) 7.90 pts
Heat 2: Daniel Redman (ZAF) 11.83 pts, Alex Gray (USA) 9.83 pts, Heath Joske (AUS) 7.64 pts, Jason Harris (USA) 4.87 pts
Heat 3: Shaun Ward (USA) 12.90 pts, Nat Young (USA) 11.60 pts, Joaquim Guichard (DEN) 9.76 pts, Joao Guedes (PRT) 7.80 pts
Heat 4: Hodei Collazo (EUK) 16.20 pts, Stuart Kennedy (AUS) 12.30 pts, Gordon Fontaine (FRA) 10.30 pts, Eneko Acero (EUK) 6.40 pts
Heat 5: Dylan Graves (PRI) 11.20 pts, Vincent Duvignac (FRA) 10.50 pts, Ricardo Lange (DEU) 10.20 pts, Eric Rebiere (FRA) 8.10 pts
Heat 6: Eric Geisleman (USA) 11.27 pts, Che Stang (USA) 9.94 pts, Clancy Dawson (AUS) 8.20 pts, Omer Bar (ISR) 7.90 pts
Heat 7:Blake Wilson (AUS) 13.34 pts, Damien Chaudoy (REU) 12.27 pts, Alan Stokes (GBR) 8.97 pts, Cheyne Willis (HAW) 3.20 pts
Heat 8: Medi Veminardi (REU) 13.93 pts, Brent Dorrington (AUS) 13.53 pts, Marc Lacomare (FRA) 12.94 pts, Gustavo Fernandes (BRA) 11.97 pts
Heat 9: Miguel Pupo (BRA) 15.07 pts, Romain Laulhe (FRA) 14.56 pts, Chad Compton (USA) 10.77 pts, Mason Ho (HAW) 9.67 pts
Heat 10: Gabriel Medina (BRA) 16.67 pts, Brad Ettinger (USA) 13.23 pt, John John Florence (HAW) 6.57 pts, Chase Wilson (USA) 5.93 pts
Heat 11: Christophe Allary (REU) 14.23 pts, Tonino Benson (Haw) 14.17 pts, Chad Du Toit (ZAF) 12.87 pts, Simon Marchand (FRA) 5.60 pts
Heat 12: Dane Gudauskas (USA) 9.60 pts, Rowan Aish (NZL) 8.80 pts, Casey Brown (HAW) 7.50 pts, Micheal Bailey (USA) 5.87 pts
Heat 13: Alain Riou (REU) 14.10 pts, Nathan Webster (AUS) 13.33 pts, Jean Seb Estienne (BLM) 9.17 pts, Sunny Garcia (HAW) 6.33 pts
heat 14: Granger Larsen (HAW) 13.94 pts, Bruno Rodrigues (USA) 13.90 pts, Charly Brown (BRA) 13.53 pts, Frederic Robin (REU) 8.50 pts
Heat 15: Igor Morais (PRT) 16.84 pts, Taylor Lincoln (AUS) 14.27 pts, Dylan Melamed (HAW) 10.00 pts, Diego Rosa (BRA) 7.10 pts
Heat 16: Kiron Jabour (HAW) 12.83 pts, Neco Padaratz (BRA) 11.17 pts, T J Barron (HAW) 9.70 pts, Oliver Kurtz (USA) 7.65 pts
Heat 17: Jesse-Merle Jones (HAW) 15.63 pts, Rudy Palmboom (ZAF) 14.23 pts, Jano Belo (BRA) 13.66 pts, Jayke Sharp (AUS) 10.03 pts
Heat 18: Txaber Trojaola (EUK) 12.23 pts, Bernardo Miranda (BRA) 12.13 pts, Nathan Carroll (HAW) 11.50 pts, Abdel El Harim (MAR) 9.84 pts,
Heat 19: Raoni Monteiro (BRA) 14.83 pts, Jorge Spanner (BRA) 14.20 pts, Justin Mujica (PRT) 11.77 pts, Sam Lamiroy (GBR) 9.80 pts
Heat 20: Nicolas Von Rupp (DEU) 14.00 pts, Blake Jones (USA) 10.76 pts, Jack Perry (AUS) 10.54 pts, Anthony Petruso (USA) 9.90 pts
Heat 21: Sam Page (AUS) 13.34 pts, Jarrad Sullivan (AUS) 13.13 pts, Miguel Ximenez (PRT) 10.17 pts, Matt Pagan (USA) 9.83 pts
Heat 22: Nick White (NZL) 14.67 pts, Edouard Fernandes (PRT) 12.53 pts, Russel Winter (GBR) 11.70 pts, Hugo Savalli (REU) 11.67 pts
Heat 23: Sebastien Zietz (HAW) 16.17 pts, Antonio Bortoletto (ZAF) 15.33 pts, Oli Adams (GBR) 7.90 pts, Ryah Arthur (USA) 6.50 pts
Heat 24: Kai Barger (HAW) 17.64 pts, Thiago Camarao (BRA) 17.00 pts, Luka Guichard (DEN) 9.50 pts, Rudy Maréchal (FRA) 8.37 pts