- 15 September 2008 | Surfing
Tim Boal (Anglet, FRA), 25, won the Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) World Qualifying Series (WQS) 5-Star Rip Curl Pro Zarautz today, claiming valuable 2000 ratings’ points after defeating Joan Duru (Hossegor, FRA), 19, in clean two to three foot (0.5 to 1 meter) waves in an unprecedent 100% French final. Boal goes from No. 5 to No. 3 on the ASP WQS international ratings and will enjoy a well-deserved break.
Boal, who dominated the final day with great tactics and comitted surfing posting an excellent 16.34 point heat tally (out of a possible 20) to win, left no time to take a commanding lead in the last battle of the event, and left Duru in need of a combination of waves to catch up as ten minutes were remaining.
"I am so stoked to finally get a big win," Boal said. "I was able to get the waves and surf them well and it is great to getting the feeling right. That win is the icing on the cake. I made the final in California at the US Open of Surfing but failed to win it and it was a big frustration for me. I fell on lots of waves there and I just wanted to make a good final here to put that loss in California behind me."
Boal, who reached the Man-on-man finals of every event this summer including a 5th place in the ASP WQS 6-Star Prime Rip Curl Pro Hossegor/Seignosse, sealed his European leg with a win giving him an overall ratings’ total of 11888 points which virtually secures his spot for next year’s ASP Top 45, the elite contingent competing on the ASP World Tour.
"It is a long road to the end but this summer leg has been good to me and I hope it stays like that," Boal said. "The Basque Country is my favorite place in the world and I want to thank everyone for being here, my father and friends. So stoked."
At ninteen years of age, Duru confirmed his status of most promissing French surfer of the moment by getting a runner-up finish in the event, his best result to date. Duru, a former ASP European Junior champion, did not surf the better waves during the final clash and was disappointed leaving the water.
- 12 September 2008 | Surfing
A powerhouse young surfer from Australia has fired the first shot in a winner-take-all global battle for the US$50,000 Kustom Air Strike bounty.
Mitch Coleborn, the 2007 ASP Australasian Junior Series Champion, has landed a crazy backhand flip while surfing in the Mentawai Islands.
The ride, filmed by Matt Shuster, has earned Coleborn the distinction of being the first official entrant in the Kustom Air Strike following the opening of an eight-month competition window in August.
Kustom Air Strike is open to all surfers, both amateurs and professional anywhere in the world, and is a quest to produce the most innovative and inspired aerial manoeuvre in surfing’s history.
Surf footwear brand Kustom is laying down US$50,000 cash to the winning surfer, while the videographer who records the manoeuvre scores a US$5000 cash prize.
Kustom’s General Manager Harry Truscott said Coleborn’s punt has set the bar high for other contestants.
“Clips started rolling in within a week of the contest launch, but all so far have been from earlier in the year, outside the contest window, said Truscott.
“Then we received notice that an entry from Mitch was coming down the line and, given that he is such an amazing aerial surfer, we knew it would be good. Then we saw it and were completely blown away! It is awesome to get a move of this quality as the opening salvo in the Air Strike.
“Mitch has thrown down a really big move to kick things off, and we can’t wait to see what the response will be from the world’s best aerial surfers.
Given that he paddled into this wave, it will take something pretty crazy to beat it. But with US$50,000 on the line, something crazy is exactly what we are expecting. Let the games begin!”
- 12 September 2008 | Surfing
Kelly Slater (USA) beat Taj Burrow (AUS) 18.97 to 18.63 to win his third Boost Mobile Pro title at Lower Trestles today. He is now as close as one event away from winning a record ninth ASP World Title.
Burrow blitzed early and with a 9.00 and 9.63 in his scoreline before the halfway mark, had Slater looking for a combination of excellent scoring waves to contend. In sheer Slater fashion, the eight-time ASP World Champion fought his way back to claim victory – his fifth of the season.
“I was literally out there just trying to save face, I thought Taj had me – he was on fire,” Slater said. “I was just trying to get out of combo and put on a good show for everybody. I got a 9.7 on a smaller wave that had a clean face and let me get a lot of speed and some big carves and that let me get back in.”
Even with the 9.7, Slater was still searching for an 8.93. Burrow gave Slater a very average looking wave with less than two minutes to go – a mistake that cost him the win and a healthy prize purse. Hurley, the presenting sponsor of the event, threw an additional US$45,000 on top of the standard US$30,000 first place prize purse – the winner of the Boost Mobile Pro presented by Hurley took home US$75,000 today.
“Taj had priority and he let that wave go because it was the first wave and he probably thought it was going to be bumpy but it let me do a lot on it,” Slater said. “It was a really good wave, but it was the first wave of the set.”
To add insult to Burrow’s injury, the final was five minutes longer than the standard ASP final which is usually 35-minutes in duration. Slater talked Burrow and the contest director into lengthening the heat before they paddled out and that was the difference today.
“We went over and talked to Snips (contest director Mike Parsons) before the heat,” Slater said. “Taj wanted to do a 35-minute heat and I said,‘Why don’t we do a 40 minute final, we’ve got all the time in the world this afternoon.’ If we had done a 35-minute heat I would have lost.”
Burrow wore his disappointment at today’s loss on his sleeve.