Jennifer Smith takes the Roxy Jam in Biarritz 

Jennifer Smith (California, USA), 23, won the Roxy Jam in Biarritz today to claim the second ASP Women’s World Longboard title of her brilliant career after defeating fellow finalist and outsider Coline Menard (Reunion Island, FRA), 21, in the final exchange of the 2009 edition. Smith, who dominated the final bout from the beginning until the end, confirmed her stellar Semifinal run where she managed to score a 9.25 point ride, the highest wave score of the event, defeating Menard confidently.

“To win a second world title is just unbelievable,” Smith said. “That heat against Chelsea (Williams)… I was ready to bow out in the semis and I had no idea I was going to get that wave and this score down. I was feeling pretty confident after that and when once I made the final I was definitely looking for the second title, for sure.”

Smith, who raised her world title trophy in front of a cheering crowd at La Côtes des Basques, signed an unexpected stellar come-back on top of the international hierarchy today, after several months without a win.

“I had no expectations this year as I had not won an event in months, maybe a year,” Smith said. “I came over here to give my best and see what happens, and I made the final and won it. It’s just so good to get a second one. I am going to celebrate with all my best friends that are here tonight and fly back home tomorrow.”

Read more...

Rob Machado 

Hurley has just made the unprecedented announcement that first place in the upcoming Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) World Qualifying Series (WQS) 6-Star U.S. Open of Surfing at Huntington Beach will now be US$100,000, the biggest prize purse in professional surfing’s history.

“Huntington Beach is ground zero for competitive surfing in mainland America, and on the 50th anniversary of major events at the Pier, we’re excited and honored to help bring surfing back to center stage at the U.S. Open,” Evan Slater, Hurley Digital Marketing Manager, said. “This includes attracting the world’s best surfers and making it the significant event it deserves to be.”

The event, which runs at the historic Huntington Beach Pier from July 20 – 26, 2009, has attracted a bevy of the world’s best surfers from the prestigious ASP Dream Tour as well as the top ASP WQS seeds looking to gain valuable qualification points in their respective campaigns for an ASP World Tour berth in 2010.

“Going back to the Op Pro days in the early to mid 80s, the event here at Huntington always seemed larger than life,” Slater said. “Where your heroes performed the unimaginable right in front of you. The waves weren’t the key factor it was the atmosphere. At Rob Machado’s suggestion, who remembers those days clearly as a kid, he felt a first-place incentive like this would help rekindle that electric atmosphere.”

Hurley’s unparalleled financial incentive has caught the global attention of surfers, fans, industry powerbrokers and the ASP.

Read more...

Tom Curren 

Tom Curren (USA) claimed victory in the first round of the highly anticipated Clash of the Icons against fellow surfing legend Mark Occhilupo (AUS) at the Billabong Pro Jeffreys Bay this morning.


Sent out into clean one metre waves at Supertubes at 7.15 am, Curren started with two short rides before Occhilupo posted the first meaningful ride of the encounter – 6.50 out of 10 – for a series of trademark backhand carves. Curren waited patiently for the best waves and was rewarded with one that peeled the entire length of the point  enabling the renowned stylist to rack up a 7.0.

Occy continued to be the busier of the two as they moved down the point to the cleaner faces at the Carpark section and the Australian held the lead going into the last five minutes. Curren’s patience paid off in the dying minutes as, needing just 4.51 points, he found the best wave of the heat and extracted everything from it, riding almost onto the rocks at Impossibles, to be awarded 7.50 by the judges and first blood in the clash.

There will be a second round between two of surfing’s best known ambassadors between the semifinals and the final of the Billabong Pro when Occhilupo will have the chance to restore parity to their 26 year rivalry that now stands at 9 wins to 8 wins in Curren’s favour.

The Billabong Pro Jeffreys Bay moved straight into Round 2 action with Heat 3 producing a nail-biting finale as Dean Morrison, the point break maestro from Australia, pipped current World No. 15 Jeremy Flores (FRA) with his last ride. Morrison will meet Nathaniel Curran (USA) in Round 3 after ASP World Tour rookie caused an upset by defeating current World No.2 and the No. 4 seed at J-bay, Adriano de Souza (BRA), in Round 2.

Read more...