Day Two

oxbow surf competition

Oxbowpro WLT – DAY 2 – BY SAM BLEAKLEY

SAN CLEMENTE, California (Thursday, November 06, 2008) – The Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) World Longboard Tour (WLT) will see Round 2 of the Oxbowpro World Longboard Tour hit the water at 8am at San Onofre State Beach today in peaky two foot (1 metre) conditions.

The Oxbowpro World Longboard Tour event marks the last of the two held on the ASP WLT with the top seed at the series’ end claiming the title of ASP World Longboard Champion. Yesterday’s action saw current ratings leader Harley Ingelby (AUS), 25, Antione Delpero (FRA), 23, and Bonga Perkins (HAW), 36, advance into Round 3 and are all in contention to claim this year’s ASP WLT title.

Round 2 of Oxbowpro World Longboard Tour Begins at 8am

Today’s Round 2 competitors will battle for a spot in Round 3, where they will tackle the heat winners of Round 1. Today’s competition will see a dropping northwest swell and will run as conditions permit.

“We plan on running as many Round 2 heats as we can today,” Henry Ford, Oxbowpro World Longboard Tour event coordinator said. “We may not complete the entire round today and are going to run today’s heats depending on how conditions change throughout the day.”

Today’s Round 2 action will see standout surfers Joe Aaron (USA), 17, who entered the event through the trials, and local San Onofre State Beach surfer Josh Baxter (USA), 38, work to earn their spot into Round 3.

Sam at San O on THURSDAY 6TH NOVEMBER

The dawn patrol is the essence of the California surfing experience. Braving the early chill I paddled out at San O as the sunrise threw a blanket of colour across the whole coast. Sheet glass sets swung and danced, and as one rose up I took off. Sliding all the way to shore, I knew today would be a beauty.

The roar of the train heading north signalled the start of round 2 and a fresh south swell. Velvet moves were on display as local cool cats Tom Witt and Joe Aaron eliminated Brazilian Danilo Rodrigo and Australian Jackson Close respectively with traditional noseriding flavour. The sun spiced up, the sky was blue, and in the crystal clean 3 feet waves the judges were rewarding innovative lines and variety of manoeuvres. The classic San O style shone through with Americans Brad Vetter, Tom Lloy and Josh Baxter drawing footwork, hang tens and radical turns all over the faces for 8 point rides.

The nail bitter of the day came when reigning British and European longboard champion and Oxbowpro teamrider Ben Skinner won a tense heat against Californian Zack Howard. The lulls were painfully long, then on the very last exchange of wave scores in the dying seconds, Ben bagged what he needed and clinched a well deserved place in round 3 tomorrow.

Sam Bleakley

I managed to soak up some of Ben’s renowned contest drive and step up a gear in my heat to beat former ASP World Longboard Champion Dino Miranda from Hawaii. I was relieved the onshores had not kicked in, and really enjoyed the clean conditions, trying to get early critical noserides and fast committed turns. In fact, the surf stayed as smooth as the Fonz from Happy Days all day, leaving 16 surfers eliminated from the event, and the remaining 32 stoked longboarders ready for their man-on-man heats in round 3.

The Association of Surfing Professionals

SAN CLEMENTE, California (Thursday, November 06, 2008) – The Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) World Longboard Tour (WLT) kicked off the second day of competition at San Onofre State Beach in one-to-three foot (1 metre) conditions. Today’s action saw local event trialists such as Steve Newton (USA), 23, and Joe Aaron (USA), 17, eliminate some of the ASP WLT’s top performers in Round 2, while fellow San Onofre State Beach local Tom Lloy (USA), 22, compiled the highest heat total of the day.

The Oxbowpro World Longboard Tour at San Onofre State Beach marks the last of two events held on the ASP WLT, with the series’ top seed taking this year’s prized title of 2008 ASP World Longboard Champion.

Newton, who entered the main event by advancing through two trials heats, issued the upset of the day by defeating ASP WLT No. 5 Carlos Bahia (BRA). The San Clemente local hopes to compete on the ASP WLT next year and feels that the heat victory shows that he can contend with the world’s best.

“I live in San Clemente and this means everything to me,” Newton said. “I want to do the tour next year, if there is a tour in France, so this result means everything to me.”

SAN CLEMENTE

Newton amassed an impressive heat total of 15.25 out of 20 to defeat the Brazilian longboarding star with a combination of smooth turns and classic noseriding.

“We were actually thinking about holding it off today,” Newton said. “All of a sudden when we were making the call some sets started rolling through and I just got really fortunate with the waves in my heat.”

The progressive longboarder knows that he has a tough road ahead, as he will continue to face the event’s top seeds due to his entrance into the event as a trialist. Newton will tackle current ratings leader Harley Ingleby in Round 3.

“I’m psyching right now,” Newton said. “I think I’m the lowest seed in the event because I got in as a trialist, so I might have to surf against Harley (Ingleby) in Round 3 and he’s a really good competitor.”

SAN CLEMENTE

Aaron, who was also a local trialist, eliminated Australian Jackson Close (AUS) in a tight heat to advance into Round 3 and was fired up with his result. The young Dana Point native had several long noserides in his heat to claim the win.

“For me, I was stoked to even be in this contest,” Aaron said. “I actually got in through the trials. To get in from the trials and get this far is huge for me. I live about 10 minutes away and I surf here most of the time so I’m happy to be in the event.”

Aaron

Aaron is one of the youngest surfers in the event and looks at this contest as an opportunity to improve his level of surfing while competing against some of the world’s finest competitive longboarders.

“It just pushes me more to be able to surf against guys that are at this level,” Aaron said. “It betters me as a surfer and I’m stoked to be in this event.”

Lloy, who is currently rated 17th amongst his fellow ASP WLT competitors, compiled the highest heat total of the day, a 16.00 out of 20, and eliminated Rusty Kealuana (HAW) from the event.

“I just kind of waited for the right ones,” Lloy said. “I knew that Rusty (Keaulana) was going to sit outside with priority, so I just wanted to pick a couple off to put the pressure on him and it worked out.”

Lloy used his local knowledge of San Onofre State Beach to dominate the heat over Keaulana and earned a Round 3 berth with the result.

“I surf here every day,” Lloy said. “I grew up in Dana Point and I’ve been surfing here my whole life. It really helps knowing when some of the peaks are going to shift over. It’s really good to have that knowledge.”

Oxbowpro World Longboard Tour Round 2 Results:

Heat 1: Steve Newton (USA) 15.25 def. Carlos Bahia (BRA) 8.25

Heat 2: Amaro Matos (BRA) 14.00 def. Brendan White (USA) 12.05

Heat 3: Tom Witt (USA) 13.90 def. Danilo Rodrigo (BRA) 11.50

Heat 4: Joe Aaron (USA) 13.75 def. Jackson Close (AUS) 13.30

Heat 5: Jamie Viudes (BRA) 14.00 def. Kai Lenny (HAW) 7.35

Heat 6: Ben Skinner (GBR) 10.20 def. Zack Howard (USA) 9.85

Heat 7: Brad Vetter (USA) 15.15 def. Kai Sallas (HAW) 14.65

Heat 8: Bryce Young (AUS) 11.75 def. Jed Morouse (USA) 8.90

Heat 9: Josh Constable (AUS) 15.00 def. David Kinoshita (JPN) 6.75

Heat 10: Tom Lloy (USA) 16.00 def. Rusty Keaulana (HAW) 12.75

Heat 11: Alex Salazar (BRA) 13.00 def. Eugene Teal (JPN) 8.70

Heat 12: Sam Bleakley (GBR) 13.90 def. Dino Miranda (HAW) 12.10

Heat 13: Josh Baxter (USA) 14.50 def. Alexis Deniel (FRA) 11.70

Heat 14: Cole Robbins (USA) 15.25 def. Anri Nabeshima (JPN) 4.25

Heat 15: Jonathan Larcher 12.30 def Edward Keegan 10.45

Heat 16: Silva, Jeremias da 9,75 def Barros Roger 9.25