Cori Schumacher: the longboard queen

Cori Schumacher (California, USA), 33, has won the Roxy ASP Women’s World Longboard Championships today in Biarritz, at the world famous venue of La Côte des Basques defeating fellow finalist Kaitlin Maguire (California, USA), 22, in clean two-to-three foot (0.5 to 1 meter) waves in a 100% American heat.

Claiming her first ever ASP World title after several years amongst the world’s best female longboarders’ contingent, Schumacher stepped-up to her reputation to dominate the last action-packed day of the contest posting the event’s highest single-wave and heat scores respectively a 9.25 and 17.25 points.

“It feels so good right now,” freshly crowned Schumacher said. “It was like six minutes to the end and feelings just all washed over me and I was tingling. It’s such an amazing feeling to win. I had some pressure though when I paddled into a wave and left Kaitlin (Maguire) on her own because she can pull a world championship out of her hat anytime.”

Coming out atop a series of intense exchanges in a well-fought final after eliminating two former world champions in the Quarterfinals (Jennifer Smith) and the Semifinals (Joy Monahan), Schumacher’s solid 13.15 score to Maguire’s 9.80 confirmed her domination over the weekend, her smart heat tactics and strategy giving her the final sot at the title.

“I took a gamble to paddle into that last wave and hope for the conditions to slow down as it hd been doing the last three days,” Schumacher said. “It paid up, the gamble went well!”

Maguire, who was surfing her first final in an ASP World title decider event, came short of five points leaving the 2010 edition with the runner-up spot, a promising result and a guarantee to return in next year’s ASP Women’s World Longboard Championships along with the event’s top 16 surfers.

“I was really exhausted for the final,” Maguire said. “Doing the semis and the final in a row was a tough one but it was a good heat. I surfed my best and she surfed. I was really aiming at the title coming to France so it’s disappointing to come one spot short.”

Both finalists ending respectively best and second-best scorers of the 2010 edition, the Roxy ASP Women’s World Longboard Championships were treated to excellent surfing levels throughout the two-day competition, the intensity rising fast throughout the final day of competition and the field of contenders reducing dramatically to the last two.

“The way the contest was judged following the new criterias was great,” Maguire said. “To value progressive surfing more and still count the traditional longboard style helped push the level higher and it’s promising for next year.”

Making the Seminfinals for the second consecutive time, French favorite and and former ASP Women’s World Longboard No. 2 Justine Dupont (Lacanau, FRA, in 2007) had to accept Maguire’s unstoppable run to the final in a high-scoring battle. One of two French representatives to make the final-eight, Dupont had to face the domination of Hawaiian and United States’ natives over the 2010 edition.

“I am really disappointed to end-up once again in the Semifinals,” 18-year-old Dupont said. “I’ve had a runner-up, a fifth and two thirds in four years but I wanted to win that event today. I’ll be back next year for another shot for sure.”

Former event winner and ASP Women’s World Longboard No.1 Joy Monahan (Oahu, HAW) was stopped in the Semifinals despite delivering the best heat of the event against Schumacher where both girls respectively posted 16.00 and 17.25 points displaying an impressive repertoire of both traditional nose-rides and on-the-rail attacks.

Inivted in the last second to replace last year’s runner-up Chelsea Williams (AUS), Monahan, who had dropped out of the ASP Top 32 elite list, secured her retrun to the elite for 2011 by placing equal 3rd today, something crucial for the Hawaiian native.

1st, Cori Schumacher (USA) 13.15
2nd, Kaitlin Maguire (USA) 8.10

Cordoama Pro: winning in surfing and soccer

Gony Zubizarreta (ESP) 25, today claimed this year’s Cordoama Buondi Pro title an Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) Men’s Star- Series 1-Star event over coming former ASP 2009 Dream Tour member Marlon Lipke (DEU) in the long awaited 35-minute show down between the events two top seeded surfers.

A slight drop in the swell did little to halt the explosive surfing witnessed today at Praia da Cordoama. Waves in the 3ft (1m) range improved as the tide pushed in forming peaks on the inside shore break offering the perfect scene for the huge crowd to watch the action unfold.

In an explosive opening half exchange which saw the lead change several times Zubizarreta took command in the blink of an eye scoring a 7.33 out of a possible 10 and then backed it up with an 8.33 in the space of a minute to take a straggle hold on the final which he held onto until the final siren.

“It feels so good to win this event because the level was so high and everyone was ripping out there during the entire event. Marlon (Lipke) was surfing so strong here at his home break and he is really tough to beat so it makes it feel even better to win here.”

“I have been losing a lot of heats this year and I don’t know why but I couldn’t find my rhythm in the heats and maybe putting too much pressure on myself and now I went out and was trying to have fun and to do the right things in the heats.”

Marlon Lipke (DEU) coming home in second place never threw in the towel in his attempt to overtake his opponent giving it all he had in a last ditched effort in the last minutes of the heat however needing another excellent score had to be content with the runner up position.

Surfing today on a different board Lipke felt that perhaps his choice of equipment may have been a reason for his defeat in the final.

“I changed my boards and I forgot that I was on a smaller board and I blew a couple of my waves and I looked a bit too nervous and I should have been calmer but Gony ripped out there so it was hard to win out there anyhow.”

“We surfed really close to the shore and it was great for the crowd and everyone came together on the beach and it was just great to surf against Gony in the final and we had a laugh together in the water.”

“I live here just round the corner and it is a fun event for me and if you have time it is a great contest to go to and see beautiful beaches and good nightlife and just to have a relaxing week.”

Nicolaus Rupp (DEU) finished equal third after being eliminated by Zubizarreta in their 30-minute clash. Never given the opportunity to get in the race Rupp tried valiantly to find a wave which would allow him to display some of his futuristic surfing we have been witness to throughout the Cordoama Buondi Pro.

Having obtained the upper hand over Zubizarreta in yesterday’s Infinite Expression Session clinching the win and a winner’s cheque of 500 Euros in the last minute today at the business end of the main event he was not to steal the lime light from Zubizarreta a second time.

Pleased with his overall performance here at the Cordoama Buondi Pro Rupp will now place all his focus on the upcoming ASP European Pro Junior series.

“If Gony had of won yesterday the expression I would have been happy for him as he was happy for me and he is a good friend and it is great to be with him in the water and the only thing is I would have liked to have made a better performance. The last couple of days I have been so lucky and the luck can’t always come to me so I am fine with it.”

“Third place is a place lower than last year where I came second but third is a good result and I am happy with how everything has gone here. I would love to be in the final but you can’t always have everything but it is really cool to be competing against these guys but I would have liked to have made them shake a little more but it’s all good and maybe next time.”

Eduardo Fernandes (PRT) was pleased with his equal third position even though he came up against a steam rolling Lipke and struggled to get into the clash. Using the Cordoama Buondi Pro as preparation for the upcoming summer leg of ASP Men’s Star Series events Fernandes feels the confidence boost obtained here at Praia da Cordoama will hold him in good stead.

“I am happy with the result but I really wanted to make the final today but in the end I couldn’t. Marlon was surfing very well and he knows this wave so well it is really hard to beat him here so today was not my day. I have been surfing well over the entire contest and I will be doing all the WQS contests in Europe and I will try my best.”

The Cordoama Buondi Pro is stop nº 3 of 12 which will eventually decide this year’s ASP European Champion where a total of the best 6 overall results will count towards this year’s ASP European title.

Gony Zubizarreta (ESP) 15.56 Def. Marlon Lipke (DEU) 13.10

Chris: Friend: a friendly guy

Chris Friend (Alex Headland, Qld) today won the prestigious Mick Fanning Red Bull Junior Surf Masters held at Broadbeach (Gold Coast, Australia).

In excellent, one-metre conditions, Friend outpointed youngster Matt Banting (Port Macquarie, NSW), in a thrilling final which was decided by the smallest of margins.

In a seesawing final, Friend posted a combined two-wave heat total of 14.60 (out of a possible 20) to Banting’s 14.50 clinching the win by only 0.10 of a point.

One of 12 Mick Fanning hand picked wildcards, Friend was in blistering form throughout the entire with the elated Sunshine Coaster ecstatic with his historic win.

“I finished second in the Hurley Burleigh Pro Junior at the beginning on the year and missed out on $25,000 at that event, so this is definitely a nice reward,” said Friend.

“To surf in front of two-time world champion Mick Fanning was a massive thrill and competing against Australia’s best junior surfers always pushes you to want to do well,” he said.

Friend was one of only a handful of the country’s top junior surfers selected by Mick Fanning to compete in the event, which is a specialty, invitational competition.

For his efforts today, Friend walked away with a whopping $AUS 10,000 – one of the biggest cheques in professional junior surfing.

Meanwhile, Matt Banting once again solidified himself as a future surfing champion with the 16-year-old giving away up to four years age difference to some of his rivals.

Banting will undoubtably be making massive inroads into the Pro Junior series in years to come.

There was also plenty of action outside the surf, there live music from Brisbane indie sensation Yves Klein Blue sending the crowd abuzz.

Stoked to give something back to the groms, Mick Fanning will be attended the Finals to today to show his support and also check out who the next big name in surfing will be!