Whitaker's Maiden Victory


Surfing history was created on the final day of the Drug Aware Pro Margaret River presented by O’Neill, as a new champion was crowned at Surfers Point. Oakley’s head-to-toe athlete Tom Whitaker (Bronte, NSW) created his own individual piece of history, sealing his maiden professional tour victory in style.

Whitaker, a 10-year Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) Tour veteran, defeated American Chris Ward (San Clemente, USA), in a one-sided affair – winning 15.67 (out of a possible 20), to Ward’s 6.17, to take home a US$15,000 winner’s cheque and 3,000 points on offer in the 6-Star World Qualifying Series (WQS) event.

The popular 28 year-old pro-surfer, often seen chairing his Aussie mates up the beach on the World Tour, was never in doubt in the Final, after opening with a 6.17 to lead from start to finish.

“I am so stoked,” he said.

Whitaker, 28, has been competing on the ASP World Tour for five years without a first place result.

“I’ve had a second on the ASP World Tour in Brazil and countless third places, but to finally win an event is so awesome. I feel like the monkey is finally off my back.

“I had a super relaxed week and the waves were really quality here,” he said. "Margaret River has the best waves on the WQS circuit. To win here is all-time.”

The Drug Aware Pro Margaret River presented by O’Neill saw the world’s top 250 touring professionals from Australia, New Zealand, Tahiti, Hawaii, USA, France, Spain, Portugal, South Africa, Brazil, Peru, USA, Puerto Rico, Japan, Canary Islands and Mexico fighting for a combined prize purse of $US165,000 and vital ratings points.

Visit www.drugawarepro.com for further details and to view photo and video highlights of the event.


Staff Writer


April 14, 2008