Dean Bowen. Photo courtesy ASP Australasia.
BALI, Indonesia (Tuesday, July 28, 2009) – Dean Bowen (Australia/NSW Sth Coast/Gerroa) won the Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) Grade–5 Billabong Pro Junior Bali this past Saturday.
Held in magnificent surf over four days at the famous Keramas Rivermouth on the East Coast of Bali, Bowen’s powerful backhand on-face surfing proved too strong for fellow Finalist Teale Vanner (Australia/Kangaroo Island/SA) in a one-sided affair. Bowen’s top two rides of a 7.0 and a 7.5, and Final total of 14.50, eclipsed Vanner on a two wave total of 7.50.
“It’s been such a good event with waves pumping in every heat and I really wanted to win here,” Bowen said. “Everyone was getting amazing barrel rides throughout, and I was always ready to take on a big barrel, but that’s the beauty of this wave – if it’s not barreling, then generally, it’s performance driven on-the-face moves and all my heats (particularly the Final with the tide going out) were more about big moves rather than tubes.”
Bowen’s win today saw him jump significantly from 10th up to 2nd place on the 2009 ASP Australasian Pro Junior ratings behind Owen Wright.
“It’s good to be up on the ratings, but I’m not really concerned with ratings this year, more focused on winning events and simply surfing good,” added 18-year-old Bowen.
Teale Vanner, who throughout this event had posted multiple 9-point-plus outstanding barrel rides and earlier in the day scored a Perfect 10-point barrel ride in his Quarterfinal, seemed to be hunting for tubes in the Final, but was unable to find any while Bowen maintained his powerful and vertical top-to-bottom attack to take the win.
“I thought I’d find a few barrels in the Final but it wasn’t to be” Vanner said. “It’s been a great event for me and I’m so relieved to do well here and score some fantastic waves as well.”
Vanner, an accomplished junior in the amateur ranks, had yet to even advance through a single heat on the ASP Australasian Pro Junior Series this season prior to today’s Runner-Up finish.
“I was down on confidence and really didn’t know what I had to do to find a result but surfing here has really turned my year around and to score a Perfect 10 and quite a few high 9point rides feels great,” Vanner said.
Equal 3rd placed surfers today were Chris Bennetts (Australia/Gold Coast), who was eliminated in his Semifinal by Bowen in the final seconds, and Dale Staples (South Africa/Cape St Francis), who had been a standout with deep tube rides throughout the event.
Indonesian surfers surfed exceptionally throughout this event and their top placed surfer here was Raditya Rhondi (Bali), who made it through to the final 16 surfers and the final day, but had to settle for equal 13th place overall.
Surfers at this year’s Billabong Pro Junior Bali almost unanimously agreed that this event was the best ever ASP Australasian Pro Junior they had competed in.
The wave at Kermas, across all four days, exposed its variety of super high-performance qualities, from small and perfect on Day 1, to solid onshore but superbly carvable on Day 2, then epic, solid, powerful barreling slabs on Day 3 to rifling perfect barrels on high-performance mid-sized waves on the final day.
As the only ASP rated event for 2009 in Indonesia, it was an excellent experience.
The event’s official website where images, press releases and result spreadsheets will be loaded each day is www.aspaustralasia.com