- 04 June 2012 | Surfing
Cloudbreak is on fire and delivered clean four-to-six foot (1 – 1.5 metre) waves to the world’s best surfers in the second day of the Volcom Fiji Pro. Top seeds confirmed their superiority in Round 2 heats.
Julian Wilson quickly found a rhythm in the Cloudbreak lineup this morning, earning a 9.47 and 9.10 for two lengthy backhand barrels to eliminate Patrick Gudauskas, in a one-sided affair while earning the highest heat total of Volcom Fiji Pro competition, 18.57 out of 20.
"Conditions are really good today," Wilson said. "It’s pretty perfect. I had a crappy time yesterday and was really frustrated. It felt good to have that good start. My first wave was good and then I backed it up with another one. It felt great to have a couple of scores and to get that heat under the belt."
Gabriel Medina secured the event’s first Perfect 10 this afternoon for an incredibly long forehand barrel punctuated by some solid turns. Medina built upon this opening ride’s momentum to secure the Round 2 win over fellow rookie Yadin Nicol and advance directly to Round 3.
"That was sick," Medina said. "I’m stoked to get that 10 and make the heat. I’m having a lot of fun. I didn’t know I was going to make it on that one and I just went for it. This is my second time to Fiji and I heard there is a swell coming. I think it would be fun if they ran at Restaurants too."
Josh Kerr suffered a suspected grade-2 ankle tear in his opening Volcom Fiji Pro heat yesterday, but withstood the pain this morning to claim a Round 2 victory over veteran campaigner Taylor Knox to advance to Round 3.
"I was worried because the doctor told me my ankle recovery was 8 to 12 weeks out," Kerr said. "It feels super tender and I’m having non-stop work done. It’s really taped up and I don’t have much mobility with it at the moment. I got bounced up in the barrel and that didn’t feel very good, but I’m happy to get through that one."
Tiago Pires survived a hard-fought heat over rookie sensation Kolohe Andino. Following a restart due to inconsistent swell, the two surfers attempted to battle the rapidly-changing conditions with Pires ousting the young Californian and advancing through to Round 3.
"I thought it was going to be a fun heat between Kolohe (Andino) and I but we had the restart and no sets came and then that wind came and changed the look of the wave," Pires said.
"I feel bad for Kolohe. No one likes to lose in these types of conditions. I’m happy to make the heat though. I had a tough loss to Owen (Wright) yesterday and I’m happy to keep going in this amazing event.”
Kelly Slater rebounded from an uncharacteristic Round 1 loss yesterday to post a convincing Round 2 win over local wildcard Isei Tokovu. While the scores didn’t necessarily reflect it, Slater admitted that Tokovu had the talent and opportunity to mix it up with the world’s best at Cloudbreak.
"It feels mellow out there and all of a sudden a 6-foot bomb comes through," Slater said. "Isei (Tokovu) would have got a 10 on that bomb, but it was just a little too fast".
"There’s still a lot of energy out there, but it’s still a little slow. You can’t underestimate a local guy in these contests, they surf here all the time and know which ones are the best waves."
"I’m feeling not quite 100 percent, I didn’t feel great yesterday and my legs were still a little shaky," Slater said. "It’s no excuse for the Round 1 heat because Mitch (Coleborn) was totally in tune and just schooled us out there. It’s just about catching the best waves".
"I think we’ll have a few lay days and then there’s going to be a giant swell. My foot is better and when the swell kicks, in I have some big boards in the 7’6” to 8’6” range ready for it."
Slater will take on lethal goofy-footer Fredrick Patacchia (HAW), 30, in Round 3 of the Volcom Fiji Pro.
Volcom Fiji Pro Round 2 Results:
Heat 1: Kelly Slater (USA) 15.90 def. Isei Tokovu (FIJ) 6.10
Heat 2: Taj Burrow (AUS) 12.66 def. Willian Cardoso (BRA) 8.07
Heat 3: Josh Kerr (AUS) 12.00 def. Taylor Knox (USA) 8.56
Heat 4: Julian Wilson (AUS) 18.57 def. Patrick Gudauskas (USA) 7.50
Heat 5: Fredrick Patacchia (HAW) 13.67 def. Michel Bourez (PYF) 10.54
Heat 6: Gabriel Medina (BRA) 16.67 def. Yadin Nicol (AUS) 9.37
Heat 7: Miguel Pupo (BRA) 16.96 def. Matt Wilkinson (AUS) 15.76
Heat 8: Adrian Buchan (AUS) 17.04 def. Kieren Perrow (AUS) 16.23
Heat 9: Tiago Pires (PRT) 11.00 def. Kolohe Andino (USA) 5.93
Heat 10: Brett Simpson (USA) 12.40 def. Travis Logie (ZAF) 12.20