Sunset Beach rises to the occasion for day 1 of the
Rip Curl Cup and Quiksilver Roxy Pro
Sunset Beach, O`ahu, HAWAI`I - (Saturday, November 25, 2000) --Sunset Beach
poured on the swell for the opening day of competition of the men's Rip Curl
Cup and women's Quiksilver Roxy Pro today, as the Vans G-Shock Triple Crown of
Surfing resumed. Against a constantly shifting and rising backdrop, the
world's best surfers carved their way across waves of up to 15 feet. By the close of
competition, the swell was still rising, expected to peak later tonight and
promising another day of solid competition tomorrow.
The first two rounds of the women's Quiksilver Roxy Pro kick-started competition this morning in a rising eight foot swell. The first two rounds were completed, deciding the lineup for the quarter finals. Local Sunset Beach surfer Rochelle Ballard was the highlight of the women's heats with a fearless display of tube-riding on the inside 'bowl'. Not giving up after her first attempt saw a wave the size of a house collapse on her head, Ballard tried again and succeeded with a clean tube ride.
"I just remember standing inside what looked like a huge room," Ballard recounted. "I was worried that I wasn't going to make it out, but it just stayed wide open and out I came.
"The one thing that stands out in women's surfing at Sunset Beach is the courage you have to have and the conditions you have to endure. Knowing how to survive is key. The women are a lot smaller and lighter than the men and we're up against it in that respect. I'm 105 pounds, so paddling into the wave there's so much wind coming into them and so much water pushing through that positioning is key. To be able to hold your ground and keep your center of gravity and to push through the moves is definitely the key. I love watching the girls go out and charge. It's definitely a different experience for the women. It's a challenge."
Along with Ballard, Hawaii's Megan Abubo and Keala Kennelly, defending Roxy Pro champion Layne Beachley (Australia), Kate Skarratt (Australia) and Melanie Redman (Australia) earned the better scores of the women's field. Abubo's performance today solidified her at number two in the world behind world champion Beachley. She cannot lose that ranking now.
By afternoon the waves were pushing through in sweeping 15 feet lines for the first 10 heats of round one of the men's Rip Curl Cup. Caddies standing by in the channel with back-up equipment for competitors fought their own battle as close-out waves washed out the lineup more regularly as the afternoon progressed.
Hau`ula surfer Tamayo Perry made good of the challenging conditions, proving once again the local knowledge is a surfer's best friend during the Hawaiian winter surf season.
"It's such a large area of water you're dealing with at Sunset it's real hard to cram three good waves into 30 minutes," Perry explained. "It's an incoming swell, so I didn't know what to expect but I knew I had to have my bigger boards on location just in case the sets started pouring in. It worked to my advantage. I just sat on the outside and waited for the big ones.
"The past two weeks I've been putting in more time at Sunset. You really have to know this wave. You have to know all the elements and facets that come at you."
Perry headed a strong field of Hawaiians who progressed through round one today. Also advancing to round two were Aaron Fredette (Haleiwa), Roy Powers (Hanalei), Kahea Hart (Haleiwa), Love Hodel (Haleiwa), Sean Moody (Waialua), and Liam McNamara (Haleiwa).
Outside of the Hawaiians, the Australians posed the biggest threat posting five wins from the 10 heats held (Hawaiians won four of the remaining five heats). Lee Winkler, Kieran Perrow, Andrew King, Damon Nicholls, and Chris Davidson were all heat winners.
The continuation of large surf tomorrow should see the action at Sunset Beach continue with the completion of rounds one and two of the Rip Curl Cup or possibly the completion of the quarter finals, semi finals and final of the Quiksilver Roxy Pro.
Check out all the latest on http://www.swell.com offering live stream feeds of the day's events, along with all the scores, results and images of the events.
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Last Modified: Sunday - 20001126.11:04 EST
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