PASTA POINT, Chaaya Island/Dhonveli Maldives (Monday, October 26, 2009) – Defending ASP Longboard World Champion and No. 1 seed, Bonga Perkins (Hawaii), was the standout surfer today at the Oxbow World Longboard Tour, the final event of the 2009 ASP World Longboard Tour, posting both the top-scoring single ride of the day (9.25 out of 10) and the top scoring heat of 16.75 out of 20 in his impressive win over young Australian wildcard Mitch Surman.
“It’s really good the surf here, it’s a very rippable and a perfect wave that hugs the reef and you can score with great on-face moves and nose rides,” Perkins said. “It’s really ideal. It was important to me to get the opening round heat out of the way and I really feel like I’m ready for a big event here; there’s a lot on the line for sure.”
While it was a great day for Perkins, the same cannot be said for fellow Hawaiian Duane De Soto who saw his ASP World Title aspirations for 2009 disappear in an unlucky encounter with Troy Mothershead (USA).
De Soto came into this event 2nd on the 2009 season ratings and was a serious contender, but in the overall combined highest-scoring heat of the day he was narrowly edged out by Mothershead on 16.75 to De Soto’s 15.85, a heat score that would have won most other heats today.
Harley Ingelby, the current ratings’ leader on the 2009 ASP Oxbow World Longboard Tour was also impressive today thrashing his South African opponent Justin Bing on a score line of 15.75 to 7.00.
“An ideal start for me but there’s a long way to go in this event and I’ll simply take it heat-by-heat,” Ingelby said. “It’s a perfect wave for us and it’s very similar to my home break at Shelley’s Beach back in Australia so I am feeling good out there and it’s just good to be off and running successfully.”
Ingelby faces an interesting round two heat tomorrow up against good friend, travelling partner and fellow Coff’s Harbour local surfer Jared Neal who defeated Keegan Edwards of Hawaii to advance.
Excellent scores were common today with such perfect conditions for the surfers.
Three-time ASP World Longboard Champion Colin McPhillips (USA/San Clemente) won the opening heat of the event and echoed the view of most surfers here saying
“This is an amazing venue, probably the best I’ve been to for such an important event,” McPhillips said. “The waves have been pumping the whole time we’ve been here and conditions are simply perfect. It’s going to be a really special event I think.”
Other impressive heat winners today included Troy Mothershead (USA), Kai Sallas (Hawaii), Taylor Jensen (USA), Josh Constable (AUS) and Ben Skinner (Great Britain).
With an excellent outlook ahead organizers are confident of running Round 2 tomorrow in excellent surf.
The event is live on the web and can be accessed via the mini site on the front page at www.aspworldtour.com
OXBOW ASP WORLD LONGBOARD TOUR MALDIVES ROUND 1 RESULTS:
Heat 1: Colin McPhillips 12.50 (USA) def. Dylan Macleod 7.10 (ZAF)
Heat 2: Kai Sallas (HAW) 14.50 def. Bryce Young 11.60 (AUS)
Heat 3: Sam Bleakley (GBR) 10.15 def. Carlos Bahia (BRA) 9.20
Heat 4: Eduardo Bagé (BRA) 12.60 vs. Nobuhiro Ogashira (JPN) 10.25
Heat 5: Troy Mothershead (USA) 16.75 def Duane De Soto (HAW) 15.85
Heat 6: Ned Snow (HAW) 14.75 def. Tony Silvagni (USA) 11.90
Heat 7: Ben Skinner (GBR) 15.00 vs. Alexis Deniel (FRA) 11.30
Heat 8: Bonga Perkins (HAW) 16.75 vs. Mitch Surman (AUS) 10.75
Heat 9: Harley Ingleby (AUS) 15.75 vs. Justin Bing (ZAF) 7.00
Heat 10: Jared Neal (AUS) 12.50 def. Keegan Edwards (HAW) 11.35
Heat 11: Phil Rajzman (BRA) 15.56 def. Cole Robbins (USA) 12.10
Heat 12: Taylor Jensen (USA) 16.75 def. Jaime Viudes (BRA) 12.50
Heat 13: Antoine Delpero (FRA) 13.85 def. Taiki Mori (JPN) 6.20
Heat 14: Josh Constable (AUS) 16.40 def. Alex (Picuruta) Salazar (BRA) 14.05
Heat 15: Remi Arauzo (FRA) 14.60 def. Matthew Moir (ZAF) 11.00
Heat 16: Amaro Matos (BRA) 12.75 def. Jeremias Silva (BRA) 12.70