- 30 July 2009 | Surfing
Harley Ingleby (AUS), 25, won the Yumeya presents Oxbow ASP WLT at Tahara, over Duane de Soto (HAW), 32, in peaky two-to-three foot surf (1 metre) after a marathon day of competition at Long Beach in Tahara Aichi, Japan.
The Yumeya presents Oxbow ASP WLT at Tahara marks the first of two events on the ASP WLT calendar, which crowns the undisputed ASP World Longboard Champion at year’s end. The next contest slated on the 2009 season will be the Oxbow ASP WLT in the Maldives which will be held in October.
After battling through five heats today, Ingleby found the leftover endurance to finish up strong, jumping out to an early lead over de Soto and carrying the lead throughout the 35-minute final to take out the Yumeya presents Oxbow ASP WLT at Tahara.
“It’s just the best feeling in the world,” Ingleby said. “It was pretty hard out there and Duane is such a good surfer. I’m just so stoked I don’t even know what to say, I’m lost for words.”
Ingleby was in an identical situation last year after the ASP WLT in France and is hoping to put together a second solid result to take out this year’s ASP World Longboard Title.
“You couldn’t dream of a better start to the year,” Ingleby said. “Hopefully I can put together a stronger second event this year”.
De Soto donated a commendable effort throughout the entire day, defeating reigning ASP World Longboard Champion Bonga Perkins (Haw), 36, on the way to his first ASP WLT Final appearance.
“I lost track of my game plan out there,” de Soto said. “I’m stoked to have made the Final and of course I wish I won, but it’s a good result.”
Perkins, who is a two-time ASP World Longboard Champion, was in amazing form throughout the Yumeya presents Oxbow WLT at Tahara event, but the Hawaiian veteran was stopped short of a Finals berth by good friend Duane de Soto, finishing in third place overall to start off his year.
“I had a heat with Duane (de Soto) and it’s a bummer because he’s my good friend, but there’s only one winner and he took me out,” Perkins said. “I was in this position last year, going in to the final event in third place, and I was able to win the title, so it’s a really good result. I feel really good, I just was stiff on my turns, but none-the-less, I’m stoked that a Hawaiian made the Final.”
Phil Rajzman (BRA), 27, who was the 2007 ASP World Longboard Champion, looked determined to claim a victory in Japan, but was unable to stop young Australian talent, Ingleby, in the Semifinals and finished in third place overall, which still keeps him in contention for an additional ASP World Title.
“I’m happy with the third-place-result,” Rajzman said. “It keeps me in the running for another title and I’m very happy to have competed here and I’m excited to continue to the Maldives. Harley (Ingleby) was the winner of the first contest last year and I think he found the best waves in that heat.”
Yumeya presents Oxbow WLT at Tahara Final:
1 – Harley Ingleby (AUS) 14.75
2 – Duane de Soto (HAW) 11.75