As the surfing world starts focusing back onto Supertubes in Jeffreys Bay, the wildcards for the Billabong Pro J-Bay 2012 have been announced. The six talented surfers are as follows:
Dale Staples and Brandon Jackson have been chosen by ASP Africa, and they will be seeded into the round of 96. Brothers Ryan and Shaun Payne are the Billabong wildcards, and they too will be seeded into the round of 96. Jeffreys Bay Boardriders have chosen Kelvin Zehmke as their representative and he will receive a wildcard into the event, and the JBU Surf Club have chosen Dan Thornton as their wildcard surfer.
"I'm really stoked to get a wildcard into the round of 96," said Staples on hearing the news. "It looks like we're going to get some excellent waves for the beginning of the contest, so hopefully I can put my Supertubes experience to good use."
With a few injury cancellations, Dane Staples and Dan Redman have also both received slots into the event. "I've only surfed Supertubes once before in a contest," said Redman, "This year I'm pumped to surf the country's best right-hand point break in a contest situation for the second time in my life. I've only mind-surfed in all of the previous Billabong Pro events, and the waves look amazing for the first few days of the tournament, so hopefully I can surf at Supers like I did in my mind for all those years."
The forecast for the beginning of the contest period is looking exciting, with a solid southwest winter swell and offshore winds predicted for early next week. There is every chance that the event could open to perfect surf at Supertubes on Tuesday 10 July.
Dale Staples in action at Supers