Beyrick De Vries: he's from Umhlanga

Beyrick De Vries (Umhlanga) ran away with the biggest title in South African Pro Junior Surfing, claiming the 6A Surfing South Africa Mr Price Pro Ballito by defeating Chad Du Toit (Dbn) today.

A standout from start to finish, netting the event’s highest scores to reach the final, De Vries rode a wave of confidence producing another spectacular performance to pocket the R12 000 winners cheque.

“I’m on top of the world right now,” De Vries said after his win. “I saw the way Chad was surfing throughout the event and I knew that it would be the two of us in the final. He almost came back in the end there but luckily I got the best waves and the best scores.”

Opening his account with an incredible 9.00 (out of ten) for a double grab frontside 180 aerial manueuver, De Vries took an early heat lead and despite some determined attempts from Du Toit, sealed victory by threading his way in and out of a classic Ballito barrel to emerge with a 9.35 (out of ten) from the judges.

“The last day turned on a great show here in Ballito,” De Vries said, “the waves are super fun and glassy, I had a good friend in the final and I was able to stick to my aerial strategy thanks to the light winds all morning.”

De Vries’s win adds to a string of successes for the youngster this year, including a win at the Mr Price WP Open and a 4th place finish at the ISA World Junior Championships in New Zealand. De Vries now has his eye firmly set on the 5 Star ASP International Mr Price Pro Ballito that starts tomorrow.

“I’ll be looking to win the 5 Star for sure,” De Vries said. “You don’t enter a contest unless your goal is to win. I’ll be up against Jordy (Smith), Travis (Logie) and Taylor (Knox) (USA) so it’s going to be one of the hardest events of my life but I’ll be trying my best.”

Finishing in the runner-up position Du Toit kept the final exciting, challenging his rival with 7.00 and 8.25 scores (out of ten) but was forced to settle for second best earning himself R6000.

Sarah Baum (Warner) showed why she is the future of South African Womens surfing with a well-deserved first place finish over Alice McGregor (EL) in the Pro Womens division.

Netting the highest scores of the Womens event, including 9.00 rides during both the semifinals as well as the round of 8, Baum defeated McGregor to earn R12 000.

“This year’s been great for me, it’s always been a dream to win the Mr Price Pro and finally it came true, so I’m stoked,” Baum said. “I was watching the boys final and was so amped for my heat. The waves were tricky and it was fast and shallow but I had fun.”

Baum impressed all with her fast and precise surfing in the final, capturing an early lead off a 7.50 and followed up with 5.50 for a combined heat total of 13.00 (out of 20.00) to defeat McGregor who finished with a 6.50 (out of 20.00).

Although disappointed not to go all the way, McGregor earned R6000 adding another respectable result to her 2010 campaign.

Haydn MacNicol (Scott) and Matthew Bromley (Kom) finished in equal third positions respectively, the pair earning R2500.

MacNicol fell to an inform De Vries who wasted no time in throwing a pair of 7.0 and 8.25 scores on the scoreboard during semifinal 1. Unleashing a combination of powerful re-entries as well as a front side aerial, De Vries left MacNicol in a combination situation in the first few minutes of the heat.

Bromley was ousted by Du Toit in the dying minutes of their semifinal clash. Du Toit snatching the lead from Bromley with a 5.50 to top the Capetonians 5.00, earning him the second of the two Final berths.

Tarryn Chudleigh (Kom) and Stacey Guy (Mboss) finished equal third earning R6000 each, Chudleigh defeated by Baum while McGregor was eliminated Guy.

The 5 Star ASP International Mr Price Pro Ballito kicks off tomorrow July 5 and will feature four of the World’s Top 45 surfers including World No. 2 Jordy Smith (Dbn); World No. 30 Travis Logie (Dbn); World No. 13 Chris Davidson (Aus) and World No. 16 Taylor Knox (USA).

Don’t forget the press conference today will take place on the La Montagne Deck at 14H00. World No. 2 Jordy Smith (Dbn), World No. 13 Chris Davidson (Aus), World No. 16 and 2000 Mr Price Pro Champion Taylor Knox (USA), Travis Logie (Dbn) , 2006 Mr Price Pro Champion Ricky Basnett (Bluff) and Greg Emslie (EL) will all be in attendance. Members of the press are invited to attend.

Heat 1: Beyrick De Vries (Umhl) 15.25 def Haydn MacNicol (Scott) 6.50
Heat 2: Chad Du Toit (Dbn) 10.25 def Matt Bromley (Kom) 9.50

Heat 1: Alice McGregor (El) 8.15 def Stacey Guy (CT) 5.75
Heat 2: Sarah Baum (Warner Beach) 17.15 def Tarryn Chudleigh (Kom) 8.75

Beyrick De Vries (Umhl) 18.35 def Chad Du Toit (Dbn) 15.25

Sarah Baum (Warner) 13.00 def Alice McGregor (El) 6.50

Max Ayshford: an open champion

As the curtain closed on the 2010 NSW Open Surfmasters Titles, five more prestigious state titles were awarded today as scores soared high at Werri Beach.

Having seen the best 200 age surfers congregating upon the Kiama region over the last four days, memorable performances and epic conditions headlined the entire event – none more so than Open Men’s champion Max Ayshford (Matraville, NSW).

Defeating Rhys Bombaci (Kiama, NSW), Matt Jones (Yamba, NSW) and Toby Martin (Mona Vale, NSW) who finished second, third and fourth respectively, Ayshford was in the most sparkling of form.

Having claimed an Australian Junior Title as a 16-year-old and now a prestigious NSW Open Surfmasters Title two years later, Ayshford was over the moon with his performance today.

“I’m really stoked,” he said.

“Before the final it really dawned on me how much this event means to everyone, so it is awesome to take it home in my first attempt.”

Watching Bombaci annihilate his first wave, Ayshford played catch-up after a slow start; responding with a near-perfect 8.90 and 7.50 (out of a possible 10).

“I saw Rhys get that wave and it jolted me into action,” Ayshford admitted.

“To come out on top of the calibre of guys in the final, who are all of the standard I aspire to, it is a great feeling and confidence booster.”

After accruing a total heat score of 16.40 (out of a possible 20), Ayshford and his fellow finalists will now go onto represent NSW at the Country Energy Australian Surf Festival in August.

Open Women's champion Brittany Nichol (Cabarita, NSW) also claimed back-to-back titles with a dominant display of power surfing.

Defeating Rachael Campbell (Stanwell Park, NSW), Skye Burgess (Lake Heights, NSW) and Emily Clapoudis (Port Macquarie, NSW), who finished second, third and fourth respectively, Nichol was in great form.

Accruing a combined heat total of 13.60 (out of a possible 20), Nichol showed no signs of the injuries that have plagued her ASP Australasian Pro Junior campaign in 2010.

As conditions continued to provide near-perfect, metre-and-a-half walls over the final day, the best surfers in the state went ballistic – throwing down a plethora of excellent scores, as they searched for qualification to the Country Energy Australian Surf Festival.

Wayne Morrison (Port Macquarie, NSW) continued the impeccable expose, dropping a number of unbelievable scores including a near-perfect 9.25, 8.65, 7.20 and a 7.00 (out of a possible 10) in the Over 28 Men’s final to easily claim the prestigious title.

Having surfed with speed, power and critical manoeuvres all event, Morrison showed his amazing ability when it counted most claiming a combined heat score of 17.90 (out of a possible 20).

In the Over 35’s division it was former ASP World Tour stalwart Toby Martin (Dee Why, NSW) claimed his second successive NSW Open Surfmasters Title after over 15 years of professional competition, doing it in style with an impressive total heat score of 13.25 (out of a possible 20).

Following on from Morrison’s lead, Martin had the title wrapped up within the first five minutes, throwing down an amazing 9.50 (out of a possible 10) to stun his opponents into submission.

Joan Duru: cashing for tricks

Joan Duru (Hossegor,FRA), 20, has won the 6.0 Cash for Tricks’ first stop of the summer at the famous beachbreack of Les Bourdaines in Seignosse, France.

Finishing atop a hungry 60-man field after a full day of spectacular surfing where the full repertoire of progressive surfing was displayed, Duru’s performance confirmed he was back in excellent form after a month-break due to a knee injury.

Dominating the 30-minute final where the day’s best ten athletes were ready to claim the biggest prize, Duru lost no time to impress the judges after choosing the fast left-handers rolling along the nice sand bank of Les Bourdaines’ north peak.

“I couldn’t hope for anything better today coming back from a knee injury that’s kept me away from the water for a month,” Duru said. “We all had a great time today and to claim that event win is icing on the cake right now.”

Besting up-and-rising 17-year-old French athlete Tom Cloarec (Hossegor, FRA) and last year’s ASP European Junior No. 3 Frederico Morais (Ericeira, PRT) thanks to a perfect “Superman” air move, Duru opens his summer campaign with a serious confidence boost.

“It’s great to get the chance to give it your best at the most spectacular maneuvers,” Duru said. “I just focused on going fast, high, and trying some crazy stuff and when I landed that one “Superman”, it was pretty cool.”

Putting-up a new format of competition made of twelve ten-man heats in which the most spectacular tricks are rewarded in cash at the beach, today’s event saw both unknown rising athletes and experienced ASP members take to the water in a beach-party relaxed atmosphere.

With the sun out and a building swell producing clean launching ramps, the 6.0 Cash for Tricks gathered a field of top juniors (Under-21) as Charles Martin (Guadeloupe, FRA), Federico Morais (Ericeira, PRT), Dimitri Ouvre (Hossegor, FRA), Tom and Nelson Cloarec (Hossegor, FRA) as well as current ASP Star Series big names Hodei Collazo (Zarautz, EUK), Tim Boal (Anglet, FRA) and Hugo Savalli (REU) amongst others.

First ever ASP Europe Specialty event, the 6.0 Cash for Tricks event at Seignosse today matched expectations delivering an exciting show of flying maneuvers, up-side-down turns and full-on commitment by competitiors to express their “new-school” style.

“It’s really a great format and the atmosphere was excellent today,” Nike 6.0 team member Charles Martin (Guadeloupe, FRA) said. “From the young locals to the more experienced, it’s a great thing to bring everyone together in a different contest. It’s also really fun and attractive to get cash after each round like that, everyone enjoys their time at the beach and eventhough it’s still about winning, there’s not any pressure.”

Next stop of the 6.0 Cash for Tricks will take place in Anglet, France, between August 9 and 12, the exact date being decided a couple of days before the waiting period starts.