2009 US Open of Surfing 

The Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) World Qualifying Series (WQS) 6-Star Hurley U.S. Open of Surfing saw ASP Dream Tour surfers capitalize on the increased six-to-eight foot (2 metre) surf on offer to post impressive scores.

Reigning nine-time ASP World Tour surfer Kelly Slater (Cocoa Beach , FL), 37, smashed the event’s highest heat total of 18.80 out of 20 in men’s competition while current ASP World Tour rookie and defending U.S. Open Champion Nathaniel Curran (Oxnard, CA), 24, posted the event’s first perfect 10-point-ride.

Surfers competing at the Hurley U.S. Open are not only looking to nab the valuable points on offer towards qualification for the 2010 ASP Dream Tour, but are also battling for the historic winner-take-all U.S.$100,000 prize purse.

Slater’s heat win came in dramatic fashion after he broke his board while attempting to complete a backside floater at the halfway point in the heat. The sweeping current from the solid south swell forced the icon the paddle through the pier pilings and retrieve a new board.

“It was action packed for sure,” Slater said. “I was out of order in the ning, just couldn’t figure out what I was doing out there, and then I broke my board trying to hit the lip. When I hit the lip I felt my board pop and I thought maybe I could land it and get a score, but I felt it buckle and break on me. Then I had to swim through the pier with half of my board, and that was easy, but it’s like a trench over there, I couldn’t get in to the beach and I ended up just wasting a lot of time.”

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Dean Bowen 

Dean Bowen (Australia/NSW Sth Coast/Gerroa) today won the Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) Grade – 5 Rated Billabong Pro Junior Bali.

Held in magnificent surf over all four days at the now famous Keramas Rivermouth on the east coast of Bali, Bowen’s powerful backhand on-face surfing proved too strong for Teale Vanner (Australia/Kangaroo Island/SA) in a one sided final with Bowen’s top two rides of a 7 and a 7.5 and final total of 14.5 eclipsing Vanner on a two wave total of 7.5.

“It’s been such a good event with waves pumping in every heat and I really wanted to win here” said Bowen. “Everyone was getting amazing barrel rides throughout and I was always ready to take on a big barrel but that’s the beauty of this wave, if it’s not barrelling then generally it’s performance driven on-the-face moves and all my heats and particularly the final with the tide going out was more about big moves rather than tubes.”

Bowen’s win today saw him significantly jump from 10th up to 2nd place on the ASP Australasian 2009 Pro Junior ratings behind Owen Wright.

“It’s good to be up on the ratings but I’m not really concerned with ratings this year, more focused on winning events and simply surfing good” added 18 year old Bowen who earlier this year also won the World under 18 Surfing title.

Teale Vanner, who throughout this event had posted multiple 9 point plus outstanding barrel rides and earlier in the day scored a perfect ten point barrel ride in his quarter final seemed to be hunting for tubes in the final but was unable to find any while Bowen maintained his powerful and vertical top to bottom attack on the wave to take the win.

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US Open of Surfing 2009 

The Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) World Qualifying Series (WQS) 6-Star Hurley U.S. Open saw reigning ASP World Champions Kelly Slater (Cocoa Beach, FL), 37, and Stephanie Gilmore (Tweed Heads, AUS), 21, put on a show for the Huntington Beach crowd today with their dynamic ss to post top scores while advancing through their respective rounds at the famed event in the two-to-three foot surf at South Huntington Beach Pier today. Coco Ho (Sunset Beach, HI), 18, who is a rookie on the Women’s ASP World Tour, was also a leader in the women’s ASP 6-Star event, posting the highest scores amongst the top seeds.

All surfers competing in the premier event are looking to capitalize on the bevy of points available towards qualification for the 2010 ASP Dream Tour, while the winner-take-all U.S.$100,000 historic prize purse has attracted the likes of ASP Dream Tour Surfers such as Slater and former ASP World Champion Mick Fanning (Tweed Heads, AUS), 28.

Slater is fresh off of his ASP Dream Tour campaign and has crossed the globe from South Africa alongside his fellow ASP World Tour surfers to compete in the prestigious Hurley U.S. Open. The iconic regular-footer wore a U.S. Open singlet for his first heat in approximately a decade and appropriately bashed the day’s highest single wave score of 9.33 out of 10 en route to his heat victory.

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