Mark Occhilupo: still great, after all these years

Mark "Occy" Occhilupo, the world surfing champion surfer from Australia, will return to competitive waves after being confirmed as wildcard for the 2011 Breaka Burleigh Pro, to be held in the Gold Coast, Australia, between February 16th-20th.

Like the Port Wine - the older, the better - Occhilupo is always up and running. He and local Burleigh Heads rising star, Thomas Woods, will be causing a few headaches for the world’s best surfers with their waving wildcards.

Occhilupo competed in last year's inaugural Breaka Burleigh Pro, which included a memorable Round of 96 win over former sparring partner, the enigmatic Nicky Wood, who famously won the Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach as a teenager in the 1980's.

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Bethany Hamilton and AnnaSophia Robb: friends forever

Bethany Hamilton and AnnaSophia Robb will receive Maverick Awards during the Cinequest Film Festival, on the 12th March. Hamilton will receive the special "Life of a Maverick Award" and AnnaSophia will be honoured with Cinequest’s "Emerging Maverick Award".

"Soul Surfer", the movie that tells the incredible life story of surfer Bethany Hamilton, will be closing the Cinequest Film Festival, at the California Theater, in San Jose, California. Watch the trailer for the "Soul Surfer" movie, here.

AnnaSophia Robb plays the part of Bethany Hamilton in a surf movie where Dennis Quaid and Helen Hunt are also starring. Based on Hamilton’s book, director Sean McNamara’s "Soul Surfer" captures the spirit and strength of a young woman's determination to overcome the loss of her arm, after an almost deadly shark attack.

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Surfing: speed is a crucial variable

The Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast 2011 will debut a new era in modern surfing. For the first time in the history of the sport, speed will be measured to crown the fastest surfer on Earth.

It makes sense. Speed has always been considered, in one way or another, in competitive surfing. Managing a wave and its crucial sections requires speed management and the so-called 'flow'.

Spectators have always unconsciously enjoyed the speed of a surfer in a small or giant wave. Surf judges, too. When a surfer reaches cruising speed, everyone expects something to happen: an aerial move, a rad carve or a beautiful, smooth and classic wide turn.

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