Oakley Newport Beach Pro
Although conditions deteriorated slightly for day two of the Oakley Newport Beach Pro presented by Jeep, competitors in Round 2 and 3 produced big scores and dynamic surfing in the two-to-three foot surf at 56th Street.
The Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) World Qualifying Series (WQS) two-star event, the second of three on the 2007 Macy’s California Trifecta Surf Series (an ASP North America Specialty Series), narrowed the original 160-man draw down to the remaining 64 surfers following 24 heats of competition today.
Javier Swayne (Lima, PER) caused a big upset today, eliminating Californian big-wave Hellman Peter Mel (Santa Cruz, CA) while netting the event-high heat total of a 15.75 out of a possible 20. The lightning-fast goofy-footer smashed the bowling lefthanders with style and aggression, displaying unmatched rhythm in the tricky conditions.
“The conditions have been pretty inconsistent today,” Swayne said. “Some heats have good waves and others don’t. I was able to get a couple of good waves out in my heat and I was stoked that I made it through. My equipment feels good and hopefully I can make it through a few more heats.”
Swayne’s advancement today is his third of the Oakley Newport Beach Pro, joining fellow remaining Round 1 starters Jay Phillips (Gold Coast, AUS), Andrew Doheny (Newport Beach, CA), Alex Smith (Kilauea, HI), Hunter Heverly (Wrightsville Beach, NC) and Oakley’s Evan Geiselman (New Smyrna Beach, FL).
Geiselman, in his first season at the venue, has been a standout performer since Round 1 and will put the pressure on the high seeds going into tomorrow’s competition.
“I like surfing from Round 1 because it gives me a good opportunity to get into rhythm out there,” Geiselman said. “I’ve been figuring out where to sit, which waves to take and so forth.”
The 14-year-old phenom will now face off with elder brother Eric, last season’s ASP North America Pro Junior Champion, in Round 4 of Oakley Newport Beach Pro competition.
“We’ve surfed a couple of times before and it’s always fun,” Geiselman said. “Eric is a great surfer so I’ll just try to focus on my surfing and hopefully I get through.”
Tomorrow will see the completion of Round 4 of the Oakley Newport Beach Pro presented by Jeep before heading into the opening round of the ASP Grade-2 Oakley Pro Junior.
Top men’s seeds like last year’s Macy’s Trifecta Champion Nathan Yeomans (San Clemente, CA), former ASP World Champion Sunny Garcia (Westside, HI), young international threat Brent Dorrington (Gold Coast, AUS) among others will do battle in Round 4.
Forecast from official event forecaster WaveWatch for today, Thursday:
The start of a new storm front will begin pushing through the area increasing onshore winds so expect a bumpy start and stronger winds on tap through the afternoon/evening along with a chance of showers/rain. Surf will be a mix of S-SW swell and increasing local W windswell. Wave heights will be in the chest-shoulder high range. Winds are expected to start early. Look for W winds 10-15+ knots on tap through most of the day. Stronger onshore winds and stormier conditions are expected Friday and Saturday. The storm is expected to finish moving through the area on Sunday.
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