NEWQUAY, England (Tuesday, August 5, 2008) - The 27th edition of the ASP World Qualifying Series (WQS) 5-Star Rip Curl Boardmasters in association with Relentless kicked off today with Round 1 being completed in consistent three foot (one meter) waves at Fistral Beach in the famous British surf town of Newquay. An international field of 48 men paddled out to try and advance through to Round 2 and join the event's top seeded competitors that will get their turn out at sea tomorrow morning.
Today's thrilling action came from Australian brothers Luke and Brent Dorrington (AUS) who respectively posted the highest heat result and second highest wave score of Day 1. Luke Dorrington (AUS), 23, easily dominated Heat 8 to defeat Thiago Camarao (BRA), Chad Compton (USA) and local top junior surfer Reubyn Ash (GBR) with an impressive 17.73 point heat result (out of a possible 20) including a 9.00 point ride (out of a possible 10).
"I was pretty lucky out there I guess", Dorrington said. "The conditions were average this morning but the swell had got better by the time I paddled out and I was able to catch a couple of good waves. It's my third time here and I usually feel good in Newquay so I will take it heat by heat."
Dorrington, who has been on the WQS a.k.a the "Grind" for a couple of years, is chasing ratings' points in England and will be attending all events coming up.
"I am here for the whole leg and hope I can get points and dollars", Dorrington said. "I want to enjoy and keep the pressure away so I will be relaxed and hoping for this wet weather to change. As long as we have waves, it will be fun."
Dorrington will meet fellow Australian and current Top 30 WQS campaigner Yadin Nicol (AUS), Glenn Hall (IRE) and Justin McBride (USA) when Round 2 resumes.
Brent Dorrington (AUS), Luke's two-year younger brother, will be one to watch tomorrow as well after his performance in Round 1. Brent, 21, came up with excellent surfing in the low tide conditions putting together powerful turns and progressive moves to secure a 9.50 point ride (out of a possible 10) en route to winning Heat 10.
The upset of the day came when former ASP Top 45 member and Newquay local Russell Winter (GBR) was eliminated in Heat 6 by former top European junior surfer Rafael Ayme (REU). Winter, who broke his arm three months ago, was surfing in his first contest since the ASP WQS 6-Star Prime O'Neill Highland Open and lacked good enough waves.
Rafael Ayme (REU), 22, ended up winning his opening battle in the event over Winter for his first heat in a year. Ayme, a former regional top ASP junior surfer, will now face Rip Curl Boardmasters top seeds Andre Silva (BRA) and Corey Ziems (AUS).
"I am stoked to get back to competition with this win", Ayme said. "I pulled back from the tour to study but was looking forward to summer holidays to put a contest rashguard back on and see if my surfing was not too bad. I haven't trained this year but appearently it is still there."
Round 1 Europeans stepped up against the international assault and Newquay's South African Reubin Pearce (ZAF) took control out at Fistral Beach when he posted a near perfect 9.77 point ride (out of a possible 10) to take the win in Heat 9 and advance.
"I feel at home here and I have been training hard", Pearce said. "The waves got better with the tide going out and I was able to get some good opening ones. I am happy I surfed well and that kind of scores is a confidence boost, especially in such a big event."
Pearce's performance came after several Europeans showed they were in top form to battle in the Rip Curl Boardmasters this week. Other local star and top British surfer Alan Stokes (GBR) managed to advance through to Round 2 and get a chance to surf against ASP WQS touring surfers Rhys Bombaci (AUS), former ASP European Junior Champion Joan Duru (FRA) and Jarrad Sullivan (AUS).
Ruben Gonzalez (PRT), current ASP WQS European Series No. 2, advanced as well today and will be looking forward to securing points for the regional ratings.
"I feel like I am fit and in good form at the moment", Gonzalez said. "I have been on tour for some years now and started off the year well so it is good for my confidence. I am focused on the regional ratings and it would mean a lot to get an ASP European crown."
Gonzalez, 30, a leader among the European contingent, will surf against Drew Courtney (AUS), Eneko Acero (EUK) and Federico Pilurzu (CRI) in Heat 5 of Round 2. David Weare (ZAF), current ASP WQS ratings' No. 3 and a winner at the Boadmasters in 2006, will be first out tomorrow morning at 8 AM (GMT+1).
The Rip Curl Boardmasters in association with Relentless is webcast LIVE at www.aspeurope.com
UPCOMING ROUND 2 HEATS
Heat 1: David Weare (ZAF), Owen Wright (AUS), Gavin Roberts (ZAF), Simon Marchand (FRA)
Heat 2: Dion Atkinson (AUS), Hugo Savalli (REU), Joao Guedes (PRT), Txaber Trojaola (EUK)
Heat 3: Gabe Kling (USA), Leandro Bastos (BRA), Danilo Costa (BRA), Dunga Neto (BRA)
Heat 4: Marlon Lipke (DEU), Blake Thornton (AUS), Ryan Campbell (AUS), Steve Noble (AUS)
Heat 5: Drew Courtney (AUS), Eneko Acero (EUK), Federico Pilurzu (CRI), Ruben Gonzalez (PRT)
Heat 6: Gony Zubizarreta (ESP), Patrick Beven (FRA), Wesley De Souza (USA), Miguel Ximenez (PRT)
Heat 7: Rhys Bombaci (AUS), Joan Duru (FRA), Jarrad Sullivan (AUS), Alan Stokes (GBR)
Heat 8: Adam Melling (AUS), Paul Fisher (AUS), Jay Quinn (NZL), Thomas Bady (FRA)
Heat 9: Shaun Gosmann (ZAF), Rudy Palmboom (ZAF), Robson Santos (BRA), Oli Adams (GBR)
Heat 10: Leigh Sedley (AUS), Renato Galvao (BRA), Wiggoly Dantas (BRA), Rowan Aish (NZL)
Heat 11: Andre Silva (BRA), Corey Ziems (AUS), Marco Polo (BRA), Rafael Ayme (REU)
Heat 12: Chris Davidson (AUS), Jose Maria Cabrera (CNY), William Cardoso (BRA), Shaun Burrell (USA)
Heat 13: Pedro Henrique (BRA), Romain Cloitre (REU), Bobby Hansen (NZL), Matt Capel (GBR)
Heat 14: Odirlei Coutinho (BRA), Jadson Andre (BRA), Gilmar Silva (BRA), Jayce Robinson (GBR)
Heat 15: Yadin Nicol (AUS), Glenn Hall (IRE), Justin McBride (USA), Luke Dorrington (AUS)
Heat 16: Adam Robertson (AUS), Antonio Bortoletto (ZAF), Justin Mujica (PRT), Thiago Camarao (BRA)
Heat 17: Brett Simpson (USA), Gavin Gilette (HAW), Sam Page (AUS), Reubin Pearce (ZAF)
Heat 18: Nathan Hedge (AUS), Hodei Collazo (EUK), Diego Rosa (BRA), Nick White (NZL)
Heat 19: Simao Romao (BRA), Jean Da Silva (BRA), Milton Morbeck (BRA), Brent Dorrington (AUS)
Heat 20: Shaun Cansdell (AUS), Abdel El Harim (MAR), Jean-Sebastien Estienne (BLM), Vincent Duvignac (FRA)
Heat 21: Pablo Paulino (BRA), Romain Laulhe (FRA), Clint Kimmins (AUS), Micheal Spencer (AUS)
Heat 22: Nic Muscroft (AUS), Jarrad Howse (AUS), Luke Cheadle (AUS), Bernardo Lopes (BRA)
Heat 23: Damien Fahrenfort (ZAF), Matt Wilkinson (AUS), Christophe Allary (REU), James Wood (AUS)
Heat 24: Hizunome Bettero (BRA), Stuart Kennedy (AUS), Eric Rebiere (FRA), Nick Riley (AUS)
ROUND 1 RESULTS
Heat 1: Simon Marchand (FRA) 13.80 pts, Txaber Trojaola (EUK) 12.17 pts, Mark Harris (GBR) 9.00 pts, Sam Lamiroy (GBR) 6.43 pts
Heat 2: Dunga Neto (BRA) 14.33 pts, Steve Noble (AUS) 12.43 pts, Daniel Billon (FRA) 7.43 pts, Edgar Nozes (PRT) 7.37 pts
Heat 3: Ruben Gonzalez (PRT) 14.67 pts, Miguel Ximenez (PRT) 9.00 pts, Alexander El Naib (DEU) 2.60 pts
Heat 4 : Alan Stokes (GBR) 15.70 pts, Thomas Bady (FRA) 14.50 pts, Joss Ash (GBR) 9.36 pts, Micheal Marjanovic (AUS)
Heat 5: Oli Adams (GBR) 14.97 pts, Rowan Aish (NZL) 13.33 pts, Norman Landa (EUK) 10.53 pts, Tony Adams (USA) 9.03 pts
Heat 6: Rafael Ayme (FRA) 13.70 pts, Shaun Burrell (USA) 12.93 pts, Russell Winter (GBR) 11.50 pts, Kellen Ellison (USA) 8.24 pts
Heat 7: Matt Capel (AUS) 12.30 pts, Jayce Robinson (GBR) 12.04 pts, Parrish Byrne (AUS) 12.03 pts, David Richards (ZAF) 11.50 pts
Heat 8: Luke Dorrington (AUS) 17.73 pts, Thiago Camarao (BRA) 17.16 pts, Chad Compton (USA) 11.60 pts, Reubyn Ash (GBR) 10.34 pts
Heat 9: Reubin Pearce (ZAF) 17.60 pts, Nick White (NZL) 15.20 pts, Warren Tuck (ZAF) 8.14 pts
Heat 10: Brent Dorrington (AUS) 16.43 pts, Vincent Duvignac (FRA) 14.17 pts, Dustin Willman (USA) 6.86 pts
Heat 11: Micheal Spencer (AUS) 14.83 pts, Bernardo Lopes (BRA) 10.90 pts, Johnny Fryer (GBR) 9.97 pts, Sam Scoble (GBR) 4.37 pts
Heat 12: James Wood (AUS) 15.37 pts, Nick Riley (AUS) 12.84 pts, Dallas Petersen (AUS) 6.76 pts