The first stop of the 2017 World Surf League Championship Tour, the Quiksilver and Roxy Pro Gold Coast, continued today in three-to-five foot (1 – 1.5 metre) conditions at Snapper Rocks. The Quiksilver Pro saw big names drop out of the event as competition ran through elimination Round 2 and the first seven heats of Round 3, while the women went all-out in non-elimination Round 3 to secure a place in the Quarterfinals of the Roxy Pro.
2016 WSL Champion Tyler Wright will continue her hunt for back-to-back event wins after defeating Lakey Peterson (USA) and Nikki Van Dijk (AUS) in Round 3 Heat 2. Wright unleashed powerful rail-carves to earn a near-perfect 9.00 and 7.93. Peterson challenged the Jeep Frontrunner with an excellent 9.00 and 7.00, but fell just 0.93 points short of the win. Wright will advance straight to the Quarterfinals, while Peterson and Van Dijk battle to avoid elimination in Round 4.
The conditions are really good out there, and I had to be super critical when catching waves. I was pretty much looking for perfection. I didn’t get that from my 7s, but then I got that 9, and it wasn’t anything special. It was just simple, clean and concise surfing. Before the Quarterfinals, I really just need to reassess the conditions. The plan is always pretty similar, which is basically prioritizing what I need to work on, and when I get up on the wave to do what I know I’m capable of. – Owen Wright.
The Quiksilver Pro kicked off the day with big eliminations in Round 2, along the first seven heats of Round 3 following the women’s event. The World Champions continued to reign supreme with Round 3 wins from John John Florence (HAW), Adriano de Souza (BRA) and Joel Parkinson (AUS).
In Heat 6, Florence was quick to post a 7.57, but it was wildcard Mikey Wright (AUS) who took control with an excellent 8.50. Florence threw out multiple attempts to combat Wright, but struggled to find critical 6.61 score needed. Without priority, Florence snuck into a solid wave to showcase his powerful snaps and technical barrel riding for a 7.90 to advance him to the next round.
Mikey Wright is such a gnarly competitor especially in waves like these. I just heard everyone screaming after his wave and thought, ‘Oh no, what did he do?’ That wave I got was smaller, which is why Mikey didn’t take it knowing there was time left. It had a nice long wall, so I got to surf the whole way through and had a few barrels. It was a pretty nerve-racking heat. I am stoked to get through that. – John John Florence.
2012 World Champion Parkinson used his intimate knowledge of the Snapper line-up to take out his Round 3 match up with Miguel Pupo (BRA). Pupo’s back-hand was on point, but it was Parkinson’s smooth arcs and long tube rides that earned him the winning total of 17.24.
Defending event winner Matt Wilkinson unleashed his lethal backhand snaps to earn a 15.10 combined score and eliminate CT veteran Jeremy Flores. Wilkinson kicked off the heat with a strong 7.17 and secured his win on his last wave with a 7.93. Flores, who previously knocked out Adrian Buchan (AUS) in Round 2, will leave the Quiksilver Pro will end with a 13th place finish.
For more information, check out WorldSurfLeague.com.
Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast Round 2 Results:
Heat 3: Ezekiel Lau (HAW) 12.33 def. Filipe Toledo (BRA) 11.77
Heat 4: Sebastian Zietz (HAW) 16.40 def. Jack Freestone (AUS) 14.00
Heat 5: Ian Gouveia (BRA) 11.57 def. Josh Kerr (AUS) 10.10
Heat 6: Jeremy Flores (FRA) 16.00 def. Adrian Buchan (AUS) 15.97
Heat 7: Italo Ferreira (BRA) 17.83 def. Leonardo Fioravanti (ITA) 11.70
Heat 8: Caio Ibelli (BRA) 16.80 def. Joan Duru (FRA) 10.53
Heat 9: Conner Coffin (USA) 14.23 def. Bede Durbidge (AUS) 12.73
Heat 10: Stuart Kennedy (AUS) 16.27 def. Ethan Ewing (AUS) 13.37
Heat 11: Connor O’Leary (AUS) 15.03 def. Kanoa Igarashi (USA) 13.67
Heat 12: Miguel Pupo (BRA)15.77 def. Wiggolly Dantas (BRA) 13.10
Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast Round 3 Results:
Heat 1: Kolohe Andino (USA) 13.87 def. Jadson Andre (BRA) 12.84
Heat 2: Adriano de Souza (BRA) 14.93 def. Stuart Kennedy (AUS) 12.07
Heat 3: Matt Wilkinson (AUS) 15.10 def. Jeremy Flores (FRA) 14.60
Heat 4: Joel Parkinson (AUS) 17.24 def. Miguel Pupo (BRA) 13.54
Heat 5: Italo Ferreira (BRA) 14.60 def. Caio Ibelli (BRA) 13.27
Heat 6: John John Florence (HAW) 15.47 def. Mikey Wright (AUS) 14.17
Heat 7: Jordy Smith (ZAF) 17.30 def. Ezekiel Lau (HAW) 17.00