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by Ed Temperley on Friday 16th September, 2011 313057 Views
12 of 21
SRI LANKA, the original hippy surfer locale with no true world class setups but bursting with quirky culture, history, recent trauma and a bunch of classy right hand points.
For six years they've hosted the SriLankan Airlines Pro at Arugam Bay, the East Coast's surfing focus. An event which helped restore a surfing jewel almost annihilated by the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami. Everyone in Arugam Bay lost someone that day. Now years down the road to recovery this is once again a thriving surf town which last week combined an ASP 6-Star women's event and an ASP World Longboard Title (WLT) men's event.
The surf started off small and was pumping by the event's close, World Longboard Champion Duane Desoto took the win in the mals and young ripper Courtney Conlogue the women's title. Here's a pictorial jaunt around the fringes of this colourful competition. © 2013 Will H-S
Women's SriLankan Airlines Pro winner, Courtney Conlogue was loving the rippable right handers. © 2013 Will H-S
2010 ASP World Longboard Champion Duane Desoto continued his winning ways at this year's Sri Lankan Airlines Pro and is looking good to take the World Title for the 2nd year in a row.
"I'm on top of the world baby!" Dusoto said. "This is a dream come true, this is what we work so hard for. The waves here have been amazing, it's never been flat and we had the best surf in the final, it was perfect. Aruman Bay is an awesome wave!" © 2013 Will H-S
TukTuks are the best way to explore the coast north and south of A-Bay. They're cheap, the drivers know all the spots and are decent at tying boards down. Oh, and they're pretty fun too. © 2013 Will H-S
Always a favourite with the photogs, Alana Blanchard showing off her tan. © 2013 Will H-S
Australian Harley Ingleby scored the best tube ride of the event on his way to an equal 3rd place finish. © 2013 Will H-S
Helmets on the beach? Must be all those damn falling coconuts. © 2013 Will H-S
Lakey Peterson is only 16-years-old, and she landed this air-reverse less than a minute after the final had finished. Take note, you'll be seeing more of this young lass. © 2013 Will H-S
The people in Sri Lanka are genuinely friendly and loving people. Show respect and you'll be welcomed with open arms, sat at the table with family and given waves your whole trip. © 2013 Will H-S
The Sri Lankan civil war has been over for more than 2 years, but soldiers like this stationed all over the place is a constant reminder of the troubled past. © 2013 Will H-S
Playful pets on the point. © 2013 Will H-S
Aurgam Bay is a unique surfing spot. The waves are super clean in the morning, followed by howling trade winds that mess up the surf anywhere from 11am to 1pm. Then around 4 or 5 pm the winds go offshore and the ocean glasses off making conditions perfect again! © 2013 Will H-S
A 40ft long sleeping golden Buddha. There's a temple in Sri Lanka that actually has one of Buddha's teeth. © 2013 Will H-S
More Buddhas. © 2013 Will H-S
Soldiers are everywhere, this is country still reeling from it's recent civil war, a conflict which bubbled along for years before erupting for the final time. © 2013 Will H-S
Frenchwoman Pauline Ado showed why she's the only European on tour, surfing sharp and precise all the way to an equal 3rd place finish. © 2013 Will H-S
Alana Blanchard was eliminated in round one despite throwing down some nice moves like this tail slide. © 2013 Will H-S
Aurgam Bay is a hidden treasure in the surfing world, great waves, the friendliest locals, warm water and great food. © 2013 Will H-S
Californian Taylor Jensen finished runner-up, but was in-form surf of the men's event. His style and flow were unmatched, his bag of tricks was full. But he was unlucky to have his leggie come off in the final wasting precious time and energy chasing it down the point. © 2013 Will H-S
Australian Dane Pioli may have bowed out of the competition in the first round, but he's one of the most stylish guys on the ASP WLT. © 2013 Will H-S
A sunset not to forget. © 2013 Will H-S
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