- 20 February 2010 | Surfing
Surfing legend and 1999 World Champion Mark Occhilupo (AUS) headlined day-three of the Association Of Surfing Professionals (ASP) World Qualifying Series (WQS) 4-Star, Breaka Burleigh Pro today, as the “Raging Bull” blasted his way into the round-of-96 along with Luke Dorrington (Coolangatta, QLD, Australia) in the standout heat of the day.
Dorrington edged out Occhilupo with an amazing tube-riding display in pumping 1.5m (3 to 5 feet) Burleigh Barrels, registering a combined two-wave total of 16.00 (out of a possible 20), with Occhilupo advancing to the next round in second position with an impressive 12.16.
Although Occhilupo finished second this morning, the result sees him move into a blockbuster showdown with old rival Nicky Wood (AUS), who’s much publicised return will now garner even more attention as the pair get set to go head-to-head in one of the first heats of tomorrow morning.
“I can’t believe I’ve drawn Nick Wood in the next round – that is so good – Nick is a great surfer and it will be amazing to surf against him again especially here at Burleigh Heads – The memories of surfing with and against Nick are there - Bring it on!” said Occy after his heat.
Organisers are expecting huge crowds to flood Burleigh Heads tomorrow as not only will Occhilupo and Wood be hitting the water, but tomorrow will also see the entrance of the elite ASP World Tour competitors including reigning world champion Mick Fanning (AUS) and three-time world champion Andy Irons (HAW) just to name a few.
With excellent waves expected to continue throughout the weekend Burleigh Heads should again provide the perfect amphitheatre for spectators along the point.
In the upset of the day, 2000 World Champion Sunny Garcia was eliminated by less than half a point in the round-of-96, finishing in third position in his heat with Andre Teixeira (BRA) who scored a combined two-wave total of 11.60 and Joe Haddon (AUS) in second who scored an 11.43.
Meanwhile, Shaun Gossmann (Snapper Rocks, Gold Coast Australia) was in blistering form late this afternoon, scoring the day’s highest scoring ride of 9.50 (out of a possible 10) in his victory over Chris Salisbury (Newport, NSW, Australia) and fellow Gold Coasters Jack Freestone and Jay Quinn who finished second to fourth respectively.