A host of South Africa's top junior surfers will be descending on Durban for the Quiksilver Pro Junior, an Association of Surfing Professionals Grade 2 junior event due to take place during the 2009 Quiksilver Pro Durban at New Pier from 17-26 April. Offering US$10,000 in prize money and points which will count towards the crowning of the 2009 World Junior Champion, the contest has attracted every major name in South African junior surfing, as well as a contingent of international surfers.
Leading the local charge will be 2009 South African Junior Team top seed Nick Godfrey (St Francis), one of the most dominant forces in South African junior surfing, along with fellow Seals Point locals Dale and Dane Staples, defending champion Klee Strachan (Winkelspruit), and Umhlanga charger Kyle Lane.
Fresh off a win in the under 20 division of the Quiksilver King of the Groms Cape Town under 20 division, another name to watch out for is 16 year old upstart Beyrick de Vries, a surfer that is quickly building a respectable reputation as a daunting competitor. New Pier local Chad du Toit will be drawing on his years of experience surfing the perfect banks on Durban's Golden Mile in his bid to take home the US$2,500 first place cheque, while south coast rippers Slade Prestwich, Casey Grant and Hadyn MacNicol will all be focussed on trying to secure a good result.
Although the majority of the entrants hail from South Africa, the Quiksilver Pro Junior has attracted several foreign entrants, and each of these surfers will pose a threat to the local boys hopes. These include Australian star Jake Freestone, one of the most exciting junior surfers currently plying his trade on the world tour, and Hawaiian standout Kiron Jabour. Brothers Thomas and James Woods now call Australia home, but honed their surfing on the long right-handers of New Pier, and this will give them a slight edge over some of the other foreign competitors, while the Brazilian duo of Charlie Brown and Wiggolly Dantas will undoubtedly be wanting to put on a good show.
The Quiksilver Pro Junior forms part of the Quiksilver Pro Durban, a six star prime World Qualifying Series event scheduled to take place at New Pier, Durban, from 17-26 April. Due to the unreliability of the surf conditions the event organisers have made arrangements to move the contest out to Ansteys Beach on the Bluff if the need arises. The total prize money for the main event is US$145,000 with the winner walking away with US$20,000 and, more importantly, 3500 WQS ratings points.
Another exciting aspect of the Quiksilver Pro Durban will be the Komunity Project Future Stars events, which will showcase the progress that is being made in the transformation of the sport of surfing in South Africa and is due to take place on Friday 17 April. Eight junior surfers will be selected from Surfing South Africa's transformation and development program and flown in to Durban where they will be accommodated by Komunity Project. These surfers will then compete against each other in an exclusive surf-off giving them the opportunity to win a wildcard into the Quiksilver Pro Junior as well as a one year sponsorship from Komunity Project.
Keeping in line with the latest technological developments, the Quiksilver Pro Durban will include a live webcast on www.quikprodurban.com that will attract a host of viewers from around the world. The webcast will feature live footage and score updates in real time, and will be punctuated by commentary from some of world surfing's most respected voices, among them 1989 World Champion and former Durban local Martin Potter.
The Quiksilver Pro Durban is an ASP 6 star prime WQS and offers 40% more points than a regular ASP star event. The winner will receive 3500 points towards his WQS campaign.
The inaugural Quiksilver Pro Durban (formerly known as the Quiksilver Pro Africa) was won in 2007 by Luke Munro from Australia.
Martin Potter, the events main webcast commentator, was born in Britain, learned to surf in Durban, became an Australian citizen and won a world title in 1989.
The man-on-man final of the Quiksilver Pro Junior will be surfed just before the main event final. The Pro Junior is an ASP grade 2 event and offers US$ 10,000 prize money.
Chris Davidson scored the first 10 point ride in the Quiksilver Pro Durban in 2007 for a thick barrel in front of the New Pier.
David Weare of Durban won the 2008 Quiksilver Pro Durban. He beat American Austin Ware in the final at Anstey's Beach and went on to qualify for the 2009 World Tour.
A D V E R T I S E M E N T
April 17, 2009 - April 26, 2009