DURBAN, South Africa (Saturday, June 5, 2008) – Extraordinary Brazilian surfer, former ASP World No. 3 Silvana Lima (Rio De Janeiro) won the ASP WQS 5-Star Mr. Price Pro today, defeating 2006 European Junior Champion Pauline Ado (FRA) to become the second ever Brazilian women’s champion at Durban’s New Pier, today.
Posting the only perfect 10 point rides seen in either the Men’s or Women’s events, Lima advanced into the Finals where she proved unstoppable against 17-year-old Ado.
Defeating her European opponent with 17.83 points to Ado’s 13.10 (out of a possible 20.00), Lima jumped from 50th to 20th on the ASP World Qualifying Series (WQS) ratings.
“I’m really, really feeling good,” Lima said. “Thanks to God, thanks to my friends, thanks to everybody from Brazil and everyone from here. I feel awesome”
Arguably one of the most radical female surfers on tour, Lima wowed Durban beach-goers with her explosive surfing style defeating ASP WQS No. 1 Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS) in the Quarterfinals and ASP WQS No. 7 Bruna Schmitz (BRA) in the Semifinals. Lima went on to seal her 2008 Mr. Price Pro victory off a pair of near perfect scores, a 9.33 and 8.50 (both out of 10) in the final.
“I think that Brazilians do so well here because the waves are very similar to what we have at home,” Lima said. “The waves are really good here in Durban and I love competing at this event.”
Winning the ASP WQS 5-Star in Brazil prior to competing in Durban, Lima said it would be one of her last ASP WQS events this year as she returns her focus to top tier competition on the ASP Women’s World Tour.
Ado finished with her career best result, placing runner-up in her second ever ASP WQS competition, jumping to 42nd on the ASP WQS ratings.
“I’m so happy I made the final,” Ado said. “When I came here I wasn’t expecting such a good result, I just wanted to get some experience so that I can try to qualify on the ASP WQS next year.”
Ado defeated European Junior Champion Lee Ann Curren (FRA) in the Semifinals and South African Roseanne Hodge (East London) in the Quarterfinals, making a big impression in Durban.
“The final was amazing,” Ado said. “I knew it would be tough to beat Silvana who was just amazing, she was just ripping the whole event.”
Reaching the Quarterfinals were South Africans Rosy Hodge (East London) and Heather Clark (Port Shephard) who finished equal 5th overall when they were eliminated by Schmitz and Ado respectively.
Sally Fitzgibbons and former ASP World Tour campaigner Laurina McGrath (AUS) also ended their campaigns in equal 5th places.
The five South African men who advanced into today’s Round of 24 were reduced to just three, with Travis Logie (Durban), Jordy Smith (Durban) and Greg Emslie (East London) taking command of the small surf to earn their spots in the critical final day of competition tomorrow.
ASP World No. 35 Travis Logie was the first “Saffa” to come through for his home crowd. The pint sized New Pier local has been one of the few South Africans to make a mark at the event reaching the Quarters, Semis and Finals over the years and advanced today with a 10.77 heat total defeating Odirlei Coutinho (BRA) and Antonio Bortoletto (Durban).
“I’m really stoked, it’s been my dream to win this event,” Logie said. “I’ve come so close before and I’m not going to rest until I do win this thing so I’ll keep surfing it until I do and even then I’ll continue because I live just five minutes away. There’s good prize money and it’s an amazing event that I just can’t wait for it to come around every year.”
His small frame arguably better suited to the smaller conditions, Logie also employed some clever tactics, holding Bortoletto off one of the last waves of the heat, eliminating his fellow South African from the event.
“I had to win ugly,” Logie said. “Today it was a little tougher so I just tried to catch as many waves as possible and theen got a bit ruthless, but you do what you can to win and I’m sure any hard feelings will stay in the water. Now I’m really looking forward to tomorrow.”
Greg Emslie, who advanced in second place behind heat winner Jordy Smith, shared similar sentiments after holding off Australian surfer Adam Melling in order to secure his runner up spot.
“It was more of a job out there, it wasn’t any fun,” Emslie said. “I had to hassle Adam, one of my good mates, at the end. Two South Africans are through but I hate having to hassle.”
The international contingent looked particularly impressive, with Morrocon surfer Abdel El Harim dominating the lefthanders with a flawless performance that earned him a 17.50 heat total defeating Neco Padaratz (BRA) and eliminating South Africa’s Royden Bryson (East London) from the event.
Australians Corey Ziems and Kirk Flintoff whipped out excellent 8 and 9-point rides to win their respective heats convincingly, setting themselves up to become major threats for the final day tomorrow.
The Mr. Price Pro draws to a dramatic completion tomorrow with the Men’s final at 14h45.