The Superbock Pro, an ASP WQS 1-Star Men’s event, saw a full day of action at Cordoama beach and favorites all got their start. Eric Rebiere (FRA), defending champion, was much awaited for his first paddle-out and the former ASP Top 45 member ended up winning with a solid 13.00 point heat tally (out of a possible 20).
With light winds and consistent three foot (one meter) waves rolling in at Cordoama, all competitors were able to surf at their best. Gony Zubizarreta (ESP), an ASP WQS Top European, put on a show when he opened Round 2 with an impressive win over Felix Delanne (FRA) and Borja Agote (ESP), posting a 17.34 point heat tally (out of a possible 20) for the best result of the event so far.
"I am stoked with this heat today", Zubizarreta said. "I have been travelling a lot this year and doing lots of events, had a few good results so I am very confident at the moment."
Zubizarreta, who dominated Heat 1 with his custom made newschool flying style, is seen as serious title contender at every ASP WQS European events, but is still chasing a maiden WQS victory.
"I came to Portugal to practice and stay fit inbetween major events", Zubizarreta said. "I am having a good time and I love Algarve [South Portugal]. I hope I can make my first WQS final this weekend and off course win it if possible."
All top European surfers managed to advance through to Round 3 today, and Justin Mujica (PRT) was another solid winner. Mujica, a former ASP European Champion, was a standout in the Superbock Pro and came close to best Zubizarreta’s performance when he secured a perfect 10.00 point ride (out of a possible 10) on his first wave.
"As soon as I took off I felt my board was just perfect", Mujica said. "It gave me confidence and I felt like I could go for some big turns. I take heat by heat as usual but I really aim at winning."
Mujica, who placed second to Joan Duru (FRA) in 2006 and equal 5th last year, has not won an event since his ASP WQS 2-Star O’Neill Trophy win a couple of years ago.
"I like it here, I feel at home when I compete in Cordoama", Mujica said. "I had a couple of good results this year but I am definitely chasing a win and I know this contest is usual a good one for me."
The Superbock Pro follows the Buondi Pro Junior and dozens of rising talents have settled in Algarve and entered the ASP WQS 1-Star event. Among them is current ASP European Junior ratings’ No. 2 Medi Veminardi (REU), and the 17-year-old man advanced as well today.
Veminardi, who placed second to other top European Junior Edouard Delpero (FRA), is gaining experience among the WQS regional contingent and has potential to create some upsets when Round 3 resumes.
"I am having a good time this year on the ASP European Pro Junior tour", Veminardi said. "Surfing with the experienced guys in small WQS events is always a great opportunity so I have no pressure."
The waiting period runs until Sunday, July 13 and fifteen heats only remain before the champion is crowned.
UPCOMING ROUND 3 HEATS
Heat 1: Gony Zubizarreta (ESP), Rudy Marechal (FRA), Joao Guedes (PRT), Miguel Ximenez (PRT)
Heat 2: Felix Delanne (FRA), Alexandre Ferreira (PRT), Jatyr Berasaluce (EUK), Frederico Morais (PRT)
Heat 3: Eric Rebiere (FRA), Josch Schmeltzer (DEU), Pablo Gutierrez (ESP), Unai Arizeta (EUK)
Heat 4: Yann Martin (GLP), Haritz Mendiluze (EUK), Jean-Seb Estienne (BLM), Txaber Trojaola (EUK)
Heat 5: Eduardo Fernandez (PRT), Igor Muniain (EUK), Lukas Guichard (DEN), Medi Veminardi (REU)
Heat 6: Marlon Lipke (DEU), Benat Makazaga (EUK), Justin Mujica (PRT), Edouard Delpero (FRA)
Heat 7: Simon Young (AUS), Ariano Marques (PRT), Lewis St John (BRB), Ruben Gonzalez (PRT)
Heat 8: Omer Bar (ISR), Yannick De Jager (NDL), Ricardo Lange (DEU), Adrien Valero (FRA)
Source: ASP Europe