THE QUIK Pro Gold Coast is a tale of two breaks, goofy-friendly Rainbow and the yet to be surfed walls of Snapper as Round 1 of the comp was completed in clean two-to-three footers.
Bad news for the regulars is that it will probably will not move back to Snapper unless there's a huge improvement is sand. Word is the pumps are unable to suck the sand properly due to the amount of detritus washing around, which combined with a general lack of sand to pump in the basin equals no sand replenishment.
"I really like Rainbow." Said Matt Wilkinson. "It's a lot easier on your backhand than Snapper which has that backwashy-behind-the-rock-thing going on and Rainbow you take off and there's wall and do exactly what you kinda wanna do and there's no tricks to it. I guess the forehand and backhanders are pretty even out there."
Two-time ASP World Champion, Mick Fanning, and two-time Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast winner, posted an emphatic Round 1 win today utilizing his intimate knowledge of the venue and razor-sharp precision to tear apart the reeling righthanders of Rainbow Bay.
“It’s a new year and everyone is feeling fresh,” Fanning said. “When I was younger, I mostly stuck to Snapper Rocks and Kirra, but since the sand has filled in, I’ve spent a lot of time surfing through Rainbow Bay. It’s a fun wave and provides a nice wall for a variety of maneuvers. Compared to Snapper and Kirra though, I think Rainbow probably lessens the local advantage as it’s a pretty user-friendly canvas.”
I really like Rainbow. It's a lot easier on your backhand than Snapper which has that backwashy-behind-the-rock-thing going on. I guess the forehand and backhanders are pretty even out there Matt Wilkinson.
Travis Logie, veteran goofy-footer from South Africa, took top honours this morning, posting the day’s high heat total of an 18.20 out of a possible 20 for a series of critical backhand combinations.
“It feels so good to start the year off with a heat win,” Logie said. “The past few seasons, my starts have been inconsistent, but I’m healthy, I have good boards under my feet and I feel like I’m surfing at the highest level of my career. The draw is so gnarly these days – guys like Adriano and Dusty are deadly at any venue on tour and that pretty much goes for the entire Top 34 right now. Really stoked to get a win and hope the waves keep pumping this week.”
Kelly Slater was back with a vengeance today, posting a strong come-from-behind win over up-and-comer Kolohe Andino and wildcard Dane Reynolds.
“It’s always motivating surfing against good surfers,” Slater said. “Dane is one of the best surfers on the planet and Kolohe is starting to come into his own. I think it’s the same as everyone though. We can enjoy our off seasons, but then we all come back here and it’s game on again.”
John John Florence continued his momentum from last season today, exhibiting a unique blend of style and progression to post a solid Round 1 win.
“It’s a new year and everyone is excited to be here,” Florence said. “I’ve had a pretty good off season. It was short, but I was able to do some different things like travel to New York and recharge and get ready for the year. The level of surfing on tour is the highest it’s ever been and it’s exciting to be a part of.”
And the waves? They are forecast to stay very similar until the weekend.
Gabriel Medina, secured an impressive come-from-behind victory in his Round 1 bout today against Kieren Perrow and Tiago Pires. Midway through the heat, Medina was sidelined by an injury to his left ankle forcing him to return to the beach. Despite clearly being in pain, the young Brazilian returned to the lineup before locking in a 9.50 single-wave score for a series of critical backhand maneuvers. Medina would take the heat win before journeying to hospital for x-rays and diagnostics.
QUIKSILVER PRO GOLD COAST ROUND 1 RESULTS:
Heat 1: Bede Durbidge (AUS) 14.50, Raoni Monteiro (BRA) 12.70, Taj Burrow (AUS) 11.94
Heat 2: Travis Logie (ZAF) 18.20, Adriano de Souza (BRA) 17.10, Dusty Payne (HAW) 12.07
Heat 3: John John Florence (HAW) 15.00, Kai Otton (AUS) 14.80, Patrick Gudauskas (USA) 12.40
Heat 4: Mick Fanning (AUS) 17.24, Willian Cardoso (BRA) 14.57, Sebastian Zietz (HAW) 12.10
Heat 5: Kelly Slater (USA) 16.04, Kolohe Andino (USA) 15.73, Dane Reynolds (USA) 12.34
Heat 6: Matt Wilkinson (AUS) 17.76, Joel Parkinson (AUS) 17.73, Brent Dorrington (AUS) 15.37
Heat 7: Gabriel Medina (BRA) 15.67, Kieren Perrow (AUS) 14.97, Tiago Pires (PRT) 13.20
Heat 8: Alejo Muniz (BRA) 15.60, Nat Young (USA) 11.90, Josh Kerr (AUS) 10.13
Heat 9: Julian Wilson (AUS) 12.15, Adam Melling (AUS) 11.63, Damien Hobgood (USA) 11.40
Heat 10: Michel Bourez (PYF) 16.43, Owen Wright (AUS) 15.67, Filipe Toledo (BRA) 14.50
Heat 11: Brett Simpson (USA) 15.13, Jeremy Flores (FRA) 14.76, Adrian Buchan (AUS) 13.23
Heat 12: Jordy Smith (ZAF) 17.93, C.J. Hobgood (USA) 16.63, Glenn Hall (IRL) 15.07
QUIKSILVER PRO GOLD COAST ROUND 2 MATCH-UPS:
Heat 1: Joel Parkinson (AUS) vs. Brent Dorrington (AUS)
Heat 2: Adriano de Souza (BRA) vs. Dane Reynolds (USA)
Heat 3: Taj Burrow (AUS) vs. Willian Cardoso (BRA)
Heat 4: Josh Kerr (AUS) vs. Patrick Gudauskas (USA)
Heat 5: Owen Wright (AUS) vs. Dusty Payne (HAW)
Heat 6: Jeremy Flores (FRA) vs. Raoni Monteiro (BRA)
Heat 7: C.J. Hobgood (USA) vs. Tiago Pires (PRT)
Heat 8: Adrian Buchan (AUS) vs. Nat Young (USA)
Heat 9: Damien Hobgood (USA) vs. Adam Melling (AUS)
Heat 10: Kieren Perrow (AUS) vs. Filipe Toledo (BRA)
Heat 11: Kai Otton (AUS) vs. Glenn Hall (IRL)
Heat 12: Sebastian Zietz (HAW) vs. Kolohe Andino (USA)
ROXY PRO GOLD COAST QUARTERFINAL MATCH-UPS:
Heat 1: Tyler Wright (AUS) vs. Courtney Conlogue (USA)
Heat 2: Stephanie Gilmore (AUS) vs. Alana Blanchard (HAW)
Heat 3: Bianca Buitendag (ZAF vs. Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS)
Heat 4: Carissa Moore (HAW) vs. Pauline Ado (FRA)