Monday 19 June, 2006
Somewhere In Mexico
RIP CURL PRO SEARCH WCT
(20 June to 1 July)
EVENT #5 ON THE 2006 FOSTER’S ASSOCIATION OF SURFING PROFESSIONALS (ASP) MEN’S WORLD TOUR
The hype surrounding the Rip Curl Pro Search WCT event located “somewhere in Mexico is continuing to build as an extremely powerful swell has been battering the coast.
The elite squadron of Foster’s ASP Men’s World Tour surfers are now dusting off their “guns (or big boards) for the event as at present organisers are confident of sending the crew out to begin the event tomorrow in double over-head-sized waves.
In the lead up to the tournament, which is the fifth on the 11-stop tour, surfers have been scoring some incredible waves with the sand bottomed break being likened to the famous Snapper Rocks in Queensland Australia — only better.
Defending Rip Curl Pro Search WCT champion Mick Fanning (AUS), who hails from Snapper Rocks was “frothing about the location and given his record in events held on righthand point breaks he was obviously eager to get amongst it.
“It’s an amazing wave, said Fanning. “It’s a lot like home but it’s heaps better because it is just plain perfect and there are no crowds. There are no fast sections in the wave meaning that you can race the wave for as long as you want. It’s flawless! I’ve never seen anything like it.
Fanning has had a busy week in the lead up to the event after signing a new sponsorship deal with Rip Curl (that will see him be a frontman for the brand until 2011) plus attending the world premiere of his new surf film “Mick, Myself & Eugene at the Lido Theatre in Orange Country, California last Friday night.
Fanning however was more “grommet-like stoked about getting some deep tube rides with his tour mates.
“You can get barreled, then you can either come out and do a turn or pull back in under the lip, said Fanning. “I think everyone is stoked we’re here. During our surf yesterday afternoon, everyone was just freaking out trying to catch as many waves as they possibly could before burning out.
As far as defending his Search crown goes, Fanning is feeling no pressure and is in fact oozing a quiet confidence given that he is now on his frontside on a wave type that suits his lightening quick style.
“It’s great to be back on a righthand point break after surfing on lefts in Tahiti and Fiji, said Fanning. “I’m not feeling any pressure at all. I’m keen to get a good result but I’m not dwelling on it. I’m just going to put my head down and go to work.
Out to give Fanning grief and maintain his giant killing start to his rookie season is none other than the man they call “the smiling assassin, Bobby Martinez (USA).
The Californian goofyfooter has had a dream start to the season and amidst some solid finishes claimed a victory at the particularly heavy wave of Tahiti.
He too is eager to hit the water for the event as soon as is humanly possible.
“Being from Mexican descent I am super stoked it’s on,” said Martinez. “La Jolla is such a sick wave and the local people are super mellow. It’s a very small family community so this will be the biggest thing that has ever happened in the town for sure.
When talking about his great start to the year Martinez is very tightlipped.
“A lot of people ask me about my results so far and the world title, said Martinez. “But I am sticking to my game plan and taking every event and heat as it comes. This tour is a huge learning experience for me so I am taking it step by step. There are so many good surfers on the tour right now and for me to be talking about year-end ratings is way too premature.
Adding spice to the mix will be the inclusion in the draw of a local Mexican wildcard Oscar Moncada.
After winning the Squalo Trials yesterday, he will etch his name into the histtory books as being Mexico’s first ever surfer to compete in a Foster’s ASP Men’s World Tour event.
Stay tuned to www.aspworldtour.com and www.ripcurl/searchwct for all the up to the minute news surrounding the event and as aforementioned it is highly probable that the event will kick off tomorrow morning.
Despite the remote location Rip Curl and ASP will be providing a full live Web cast of every heat.
With the strong swell hitting the coast line now (the military has actually been ushered in to sandbag various road sections to stop them washing away), it is predicted that it will back off tomorrow and allow La Jolla to fire on all cylinders.