HUNTINGTON BEACH, California (Sunday, August 2, 2009) – The Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) World Longboard Tour (WLT) completed its first of two stops of the year with the Yumeya presents Oxbow ASP WLT at Tahara and saw three-time ASP WLT champion Colin McPhillips (San Clemente, CA), 34, lead the American front with a fifth place finish amongst the world’s finest competitive longboarders.
Surfers competing on the ASP WLT qualify for the prestigious tour by finishing on the top of their region’s respective ASP Longboard Qualifying Series (LQS) ratings. Once qualified, they earn the chance to claim the title of ASP World Longboard Champion.
McPhillips surfed impressively throughout the Yumeya presents Oxbow ASP WLT at Tahara, combining traditional noseriding and powerful carves throughout his heat wins over ASP WLT rookie Tony Silvagni (Kure Beach, NC), 22, and French competitor Alexis Deniel (FRA) before falling to eventual event winner Harley ingleby (Coffs Harbour, AUS), 26, in the Quarterfinals.
“I’ve been to Japan about 10 times, but this is the first time I’ve been here for a contest,” McPhillips said. “It’s hard for me because I’ve been doing it for a long time and have been at the top, so if I don’t do so well, I get down on myself because I want to win. As long as I can keep it at the top, it makes me happy.”
The veteran campaigner has been a standout performer on the international longboard scene for some time now and the unique event location choices of Oxbow have rekindled a competitive spark in McPhillips’ desire to contend for an additional ASP World Title.
“I’m more fired up to compete this year than I have been in a while,” McPhillips said. “Having an event here in Japan and the next one in the Maldives and hearing them talk about next year and knowing there will be more events helps me keep my interest. In past years there was a contest here or there so it was harder to care, but this gives us something to look forward to.”
The San Clemente local is utilizing the several regional ASP LQS contests to keep his skills sharp in between ASP WLT contests and will continue to do so until the next event, the Oxbow ASP WLT, which will be held in the ideal lefthand pointbreak of Pasta Point in the Maldives.
“All of the LQS events have been great because the last few years, we’ve had nothing,” McPhillips said. “You would just show up and do one event and everything is riding on it, and having some more events to do at home is great. It helps you keep yourself in tune and it’s perfect.”
For images and highlights from the Yumeya presents Oxbow ASP WLT at Tahara log on to www.oxbowpro.com
For additional ASP information log on to www.aspworldtour.com or www.aspnorthamerica.org