What: Rip Curl Boardmasters Where: Fistral Beach Newquay England When: 4 - 9 August 2008
Fistral beach delivers fantastic surf for Rip Curl Boardmasters top seeds. Watch the action LIVE here!
The Rip Curl Boardmasters witnessed some of the best waves of the year yesterday at Fistral Beach, as round two of the ASP World Qualifying Series 5-Star event took place in fantastic five-foot clean waves. Twenty-four heats were completed and all top seeded surfers started their 2008 Boardmasters campaign in what will be remembered as one of the greatest days of surfing in Europe.
Drew Courtney (AUS), 29, seeded No.3 in the event and rated No.8 on the ASP WQS ratings, was a standout, posting an excellent 9.00 point ride (out of possible 10) en route to winning Heat 5 with a solid 16.50 point heat result (out of a possible 20).
"I had a good wave obviously but it did not look it was going to be", Courtney said. "I managed to get a couple of turns and the wave was clean enough. The waves were a bit fat and it is hard to figure out what way the wave is going to break before taking off." Courtney, who will be attending all upcoming events, is focused on an ASP World Tour qualification for 2009 and will have to string some big results together to secure his spot.
"Things have been good this year but we are a long way from the end of the season", Courtney said. "Plenty of events still to come and everyone can win at this stage." From former event winner David Weare (ZAF) to Brazil's outstanding performer Robson Santos (BRA), including Europe's Marlon Lipke (DEU) and Patrick Beven's (FRA) solid results, top seeded competitors took control of Round 2.
Robson Santos, 21, came up with an impressive 17.10 point heat result: "I am stoked to start with a high score", Santos said. "I had a strong start in the heat and everything went my way. It is a great confidence boost for tomorrow. I know there is a lot of support from Brazil watching the Live streaming and I hope things can remain as good."
Heavy showers and changing winds made it tough for crowds to settle down at the beach but lots of people still stood at the water's edge, enjoying the stunning show on offer. The outgoing tide brought hollower waves and current European leader Marlon Lipke (DEU) was able to display solid surfing to advance through to Round 3.
"We are lucky to get such waves, probably some of the best in a while", Lipke said. "I am trying to let go all pressure and just enjoy my time on tour. It seems like it can work good so far. I have been training very hard this year, especially mentally. The more relaxed I am the more results I get so I am just going with the flow and hope to do good. I am having lots of fun competing at the moment and it is my priority."
Nathan Hedge (AUS), a former ASP World Tour campaigner looking to requalify this year, managed to walk through with a victory in Heat 18: "It was fun out there with lots of waves, some flat and others really rippable", Hedge said. "It is good to see such good waves here and start the European league with this. The year I qualified (for the ASP World Tour) I finished runner-up here, it's a Rip Curl event as well so it has all the right signage for me."
The 48 remaining men will meet this morning and there is a good chance for consistent conditions today.