Gold coast junior surfer Mick Fanning commenced his 2001 season with adevastating win over his three opponents in the Brothers Neilsen ProJunior, staged in one-metre waves of his home break of Duranbah on the GoldCoast. The 19-year-old had victory within his grasp, just ten minutes intothe 30-minute final after opening with three high scoring rides that leftall his rivals requiring a two wave scoring combination for the remaining20 minutes of the heat.
Fanning was at trademark best, extracting more speed than the other surfersfrom the lack lustre conditions to turn on an utlra fast and fluidperformance throughout the morning. He commenced the final day with thehighest wave and heat score of the entire four day tournament, posting anear perfect 9.6 ride out of possible ten and a total heat score of 24.35out of a possible 30 in his quarter final.
The super talented surfer just narrowly missed out on qualifying for anelite top 44 ASP berth last year but he left no doubt in the spectatorsminds that he will make the cut this season, especially as he will not haveto contest the WQS from the opening rounds as a seeded surfer.
“I was lucky I got off to a great start, everyone hangs around at thebeginning of a heat but the waves kept coming to me,” said Fanning. “Thishas been a good warm-up for the WQS, I just wanted to see what I wascapable of as I didn’t think I was surfing that good lately.”
“It’s great to have a win again especially at home, I surf here everydayand to win in front of your family and mates is special. This was a goodevent, the Contest Directors really picked the best locations for thewaves.”
Strapping junior Zahn Foxton (Collaroy), placed second but still required atwo wave score of 11.51 to catch Fanning. Adrian Buchan (Avoca) finishedthird, which saw him jump into the number two spot on the ratings andCronulla’s Kirk Flintoff had to settle for fourth in the final.
Final Scores out of a possible 40 – Fanning 29.65, Foxton 23.40, Buchan 23and Flintoff 20.55
U/18’s national champion Leigh Sedley (Sunshine Coast), continued his runof good results finishing equal fifth along with Mullaway’s Shaun Cansdell. World Grommet champion Luke Munro (Gold Coast) struggled after celebratinghis 18th birthday but still managed a credible 7th placing equal with thevery impressive Bede Durbidge (Nth Stradbroke Is, Qld).
Victoria’s Peter Hughes will still enter the next event on the ASPAustralasian Junior Tour, the Billabong Junior Series at Avoca – February8th to 11th – as the ratings leader despite bowing out in round five.
Further Information – Mandy McKinnon – 0417.079941