The world’s best surfers are converging on the high-performance mecca of Lower Trestles this week for the upcoming Hurley Pro at Trestles, running from September 15 – 21, 2013.
Event No. 7 of 10 on the 2013 ASP World Championship Tour (WCT), the Hurley Pro at Trestles is an annual highlight on the ASP Dream Tour with the cobblestone lefts and rights of Lower Trestles providing the ideal canvas for barrier-breaking performances from the world’s best surfers.
Joel Parkinson (AUS), 32, reigning ASP World Champion and current ASP WCT No. 3, has had a solid 2013, posting a win in Bali and a Runner-Up at home on the Gold Coast. However, with four events remaining this season, Parkinson will need to claim some major results throughout the California and European legs if he is to defend his maiden title.
“I’ve just got to channel what was working for me last season,” Parkinson said. “I had a great run though California and Europe last year and I’ve just got to recapture that consistency again. Looking at the ratings, I’ll probably need to win one of the next three events, if not two, if I’m going to be a chance to put myself in the world title mix again. However, I’ve felt great about my surfing this year.
The Gold Coast natural-footer is a perennial standout at the Southern California venue, collecting a win in 2004, but acknowledged that the elite field this year is stacked with talent.
“I love Trestles,” Parkinson said. “It’s such a high performance wave and I think everyone acknowledges that, but it’s also a great ‘flow’ wave. It’s a great wave to flow your turns together and choreograph a wave and make it look great from beginning to end. Trestles – when it’s on – is the kind of wave where everyone looks good. In terms of results, Kelly (Slater) and Mick (Fanning) are always good there, Taj (Burrow) and Jordy (Smith) will be in the mix, and I reckon Gabe (Medina) and Julian (Wilson) are big chances as well.”
Jordy Smith (ZAF), 25, current ASP WCT No. 4, has been in sensational form in 2013, claiming a win in Rio as well as a Semifinals appearance at Bells Beach. While the South African has been considered a threat to the ASP World Title since his elite tour inception in 2008, Smith has yet to claim the long sought after crown.
“I still think the title is a possibility, but I understand I need to post a win in the next couple of events,” Smith said. “I feel like I’m slip streaming the breakaway pack at the moment ready to strike. I’ve had a great preparation for Lowers so far. I’m living in Carlsbad at the moment and have been surfing Trestles every day there has been waves.”
At 6’3″ and 190 lbs, Smith cuts one of the more imposing figures amongst the elite ASP Top 34, and his size, power, speed and versatility will serve him well in the high-performance walls of Lower Trestles.
“I love Lowers,” Smith said. “I think the slopey wave suits my rail game and I have been fine-tuning my CI equipment out there for two years now. Last year still haunts me – if i’d just finished either of my top two waves, I would have been into the Semifinals and possibly further. That’s definitely in the back of my mind and driving me this year. I’ve put in my time at Lowers and when it lines up, the rights are a pretty perfect canvas to tick off everything in your repertoire. I love to use my size and hack the open walls then make the most of the end actions with a punt.”
Adrian Buchan (AUS), 30, current ASP WCT No. 10, is fresh off an emotional win in Tahiti over 11-time ASP World Champion and current ASP WCT No. 1 Kelly Slater (USA), 41. While the victory was billed as a “shock” in the media, Buchan’s win at the treacherous South Pacific reef pass came as little surprise to his peers on tour.
“I think anytime there’s someone outside that established status quo of big multiple event winners there is an element of surprise and a bit more emotion in the victory,” Buchan said. “That’s probably a nod to just how good those guys are. I think this era is really going to go down as the strongest ever and deepest as far as talent goes.”
In addition to his ability in heavy barrels, Buchan’s lightning-fast rail game and powerful approach serve him well in high-performance walls like Lower Trestles.
“Lowers was actually where my professional career really kicked off,” Buchan said. “I got a second there to kick off my qualification run in 2005 and I’ve had some really strong results over the years (3rd at the NIke last year) and a bunch of 9ths and a Quarterfinal loss to Kelly last year where I really felt strong but made some wave selection errors. In terms of my strengths I think Lowers is up there with my stronger events. Its a perfect wave but its also a very technical one and that suits me. You need to read the wave well and play the game and I like playing the game.”
Glenn Hall (IRL), 31, has withdrawn from the event due to his ongoing back injury sustained in June in Fiji. Hall will be replaced by San Clemente standout Patrick Gudauskas (USA), 27. There have been no other formal withdrawals as of yet – any further withdrawals could potentially alter the Round 1 match-ups.
The Hurley Pro at Trestles will run from September 15 – 21, 2013 and will be webcast LIVE via http://www.thehurleypro.com/
For more information, log onto www.aspworldtour.com
HURLEY PRO AT TRESTLES ROUND 1 MATCH-UPS:
Heat 1: Nat Young (AUS), Fredrick Patacchia (HAW), Dusty Payne (HAW)
Heat 2: Taj Burrow (AUS), Bede Durbidge (AUS), Tiago Pires (PRT)
Heat 3: Jordy Smith (ZAF), Matt Wilkinson (AUS), Patrick Gudauskas (USA)
Heat 4: Joel Parkinson (AUS), Travis Logie (ZAF), Owen Wright (AUS)
Heat 5: Mick Fanning (AUS), Kolohe Andino (USA), Mitch Crews (AUS)
Heat 6: Kelly Slater (USA), Brett Simpson (USA), Dane Reynolds (USA)
Heat 7: Josh Kerr (AUS), Gabriel Medina (USA), Kieren Perrow (AUS)
Heat 8: Adriano de Souza (BRA), Filipe Toledo (BRA), Alejo Muniz (BRA)
Heat 9: C.J. Hobgood (USA), Sebastian Zietz (HAW), Raoni Monteiro (BRA)
Heat 10: Adrian Buchan (AUS), Jeremy Flores (FRA), Adam Melling (AUS)
Heat 11: Julian Wilson (AUS), John John Florence (HAW), Miguel Pupo (BRA)
Heat 12: Michel Bourez (PYF), Kai Otton (AUS), Damien Hobgood (USA)
* Draw subject to change pending withdrawals.