Pic: Gabriel Medina won his heat against John John Florence & Jadson Andre @ ASP/Scholtz
Rippable 2-3' pick and choose surf for the mens day one. 4 goofy foots into 3rd round!
Round 1 done as Josh Kerr nails highest heat score
March 1st in Hawaii but March 2, 2014 - Coolangatta - The Quiksilver Gold Coast was called ON today for Round 1 in mediocre three-to-four foot waves. Australian Josh Kerr achieved both the highest single-wave score (9.27) and the highest two-wave heat total (17.54) of the day....read more...
....Jeremy Flores (FRA) won the first Heat of the event, finishing less than half a point ahead of Travis Logie (ZAF), with Julian Wilson (AUS) coming in third. Flores timed his priority perfectly, put himself on the best waves and attacked every section that opened up. Logie also made the most of what he was offered but fell agonizingly short, whereas Wilson was on the other side of the equation, perhaps being over selective and letting some good waves go by unridden.
"This is the first Heat of the year so I'm pretty excited to get going," said Flores. "This is my eighth, maybe ninth, Quiksilver Pro on the Gold Coast so even though I'm 25 I feel like the old guy. It's tough out there because the tides are a bit high, I always knew the first couple of Heats would be harder but they have to start the event at some point.”
Fredrick Patacchia, Hawaiian goofy-footer, came away with a win and the highest scoring wave of the Heat against rivals Brett Simpson (USA) and Jordy Smith (ZAF). Simpson and Smith pushed the envelopes on their forehands to net scores in the mid-to-high range, but were unable to better the Hawaiian. Patacchia, who has shown a renewed focus and motivation over the past 18 months, was lethal on his backhand in his first Heat of the season. He opened with a 7.33 and capitalized from there.
"I'm feeling great, my boards are feeling really good and it’s great having my family here,” said Frederick Patacchia. “I actually haven’t been free surfing that much as I don't want to over think it. I feel like I don't really need to do much else to win Heats. It is hard to win, but once you figure out how to simplify things you stress out less. I feel like I figured out how to do that in this Heat, but tomorrow is a new day" said Patacchia.
Kelly Slater (USA), 11-time ASP World Champion, won through Round 1 today, but was forced to fight for the win against Trial winner Matt Banting (AUS) and Matt Wilkinson (AUS), who both posted excellent scores. Slater is the barometer for good surfing out at Snapper, winning the Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast an unprecedented four times (2013, 2011, 2008, 2006), and is the only non-Australian to take the event title.
"I really love this wave, but I feel like it suits everybody's surfing and I don't know why it's been such a good event for me," said Slater. "The event site here is awesome, the structure and how much space we have now. We have a lot of room to breathe and a lot of quiet too before you paddle out which is really nice. Behind the scenes it seems like there's a lot more happening and everyone's really excited for the year ahead."
Dane Reynolds (USA), Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast wildcard, caused the upset of the day, sending reigning three-time ASP World Champion Mick Fanning (AUS) into the man-on-man elimination Round where he'll face Trial winner Matt Banting. Reynolds' victory didn't come easy as Fanning had the highest single-wave score of the Heat, but a smaller back-up score gave Reynolds the advantage and the opportunity to advance directly into Round 3.
"I was feeling pretty confident going into that Heat, but there are always nerves," Reynolds said. "It's definitely daunting going up against the World Champion, but that's just the reality of being a wildcard. You're not going to meet those guys in the Final, you're going to meet them in the first Round, but that's part of the fun. It's a little bit discouraging when you lose to those guys a couple of times in a row like I did last year. It's rare that I get into this contest so I'm just trying to maximize my time here."
Josh Kerr (AUS) put on a clinic on how to surf Snapper Rocks today at the Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast. Kerr mixed monster turns, tubes and critical aerials to clock the highest single-wave score of the day (9.27 out of a possible 10) and the highest two-wave heat total of the day (17.54 out of a possible 20). Filipe Toledo (BRA) and Mitch Crews (AUS) were both impressive and would have been in contention in just about any other Heat, but were convincingly beaten by Kerr in the most exciting heat of the day.
"Every year I imagine winning this event," Kerr said, "especially after watching friends and locals win. I have always kind of been overshadowed by the Coolie Kids (Mick Fanning and Joel Parkinson), growing up here they've had the limelight. People would come up to me and say 'oh you're from Coolangatta?' and I tell them that I was born and raised here. I've been watching this competition come to town since I was kid. It's such a great arena here at Snapper Rocks, having the crowd so close, especially when the tides are low and people are only 20 feet away. Sometimes when you ride past you hear them screaming, it's pretty exciting hearing the vibe of the whole crowed."
Gabriel Medina (BRA) earned himself a pair of 7's with a some innovative surfing against fellow Brazilian Jadson Andre and Hawaii's John John Florence. Florence scored a heat high of 8.30 (out of a possible 10) but failed to find a decent backup score to take the win. Andre faced a similar fate, only finding a 7.10.
"I was feeling good and confident," Medina said. "I had a good board on my feet. I'm coming back from injury and I'm not 100 percent yet, but I'm almost there. Day-by-day it's getting better. I hope I can get back to 100 percent soon. I had a heat against John (Florence) at Pipe and we were super close, it's always fun to surf against him."
Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast Round 1 Results:
Heat 1: Jeremy Flores (FRA) 13.76, Travis Logie (ZAF) 13.40, Julian Wilson (AUS)
Heat 2: Taj Burrow (AUS) 16.17, Miguel Pupo (BRA) 11.83, Dion Atkinson (AUS)
Heat 3: Frederick Patacchia (HAW) 13.03, Brett Simpson (USA) 12, Jordy Smith
Heat 4: Joel Parkinson (AUS) 16.43, Bebe Durbidge (AUS) 13.60, Tiago Pires
Heat 5: Kelly Slater (USA) 14.97, Matt Banting (AUS) 13.67, Matt Wilkinson
Heat 6: Dane Reynolds (USA) 14.83, Mick Fanning (AUS) 14.20, Adam Melling
Heat 7: Adrian Buchan (AUS) 11.90, Kai Otton (AUS) 10.10, Raoni Monteiro
Heat 8: Nat Young (USA) 13.50, Sebastian Zietz (HAW) 13.17, Aritz Aranburu
Heat 9: Josh Kerr (AUS) 17.54, Filipe Toledo (BRA) 12.54, Mitch Crews (AUS)
Heat 10: Gabriel Medina (BRA) 15.67, John John Florence (HAW), Jadson Andre
Heat 11: C.J. Hobgood (USA) 14.73, Adriano de Souza (BRA) 14.54, Alejo Muniz
Heat 12: Michel Bourez (PYF) 12.10, Owen Wright (AUS) 10.87, Kolohe Andino
Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast Round 2 Match-Ups:
Heat 1: Mick Fanning (AUS), Matt Banting (AUS)
Heat 2: Jordy Smith (ZAF), Tiago Pires (PRT)
Heat 3: Julian Wilson (AUS), Brett Simpson (USA)
Heat 4: Kai Otton (AUS), Dion Atkinson (AUS)
Heat 5: John John Florence (HAW), Travis Logie (ZAF)
Heat 6: Owen Wright (AUS), Raoni Monteiro (BRA)
Heat 7: Adriano De Souza (BRA), Artiz Aranburu (EUK)
Heat 8: Filipe Toledo (BRA), Mitch Crews (AUS)
Heat 9: Sebastian Zeitz (HAW), Jadson Andre (BRA)
Heat 10: Miguel Pupo (BRA), Alejo Muniz (BRA)
Heat 11: Bebe Durbidge (AUS), Kolohe Andino (USA)
Heat 12: Matt Wilkinson (AUS), Adam Melling (AUS)
Roxy Pro Gold Coast Round 2 Match-Ups:
Heat 1: Lakey Peterson (USA), Alana Blanchard (HAW)
Heat 2: Coco Ho (HAW), Malia Manuel (HAW)
Heat 3: Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS), Keely Andrew (AUS)
Heat 4: Courtney Conlogue (USA), Johanne Defay (FRA)
Heat 5: Stephanie Gilmore (AUS), Nikki Van Dijk (AUS)
Heat 6: Bianca Buitendag (ZAF), Laura Enever (AUS)