ORGANISERS PREDICT BIG SWELL FOR QUIKSILVER PRO JAPAN
News provided by ASP World Tour on 30 August 2005
With a one-metre (three foot) swell predicted to arrive at Hebara Beach overnight, organisers of the Quiksilver Pro Japan are hoping to get underway with round one of the main event first thing tomorrow (Wednesday local time).
And with a tropical storm swell predicted to arrive later in the week, it is hoped that the seventh event on the Foster’s ASP Men’s World Tour will finish in excellent conditions reminiscent of last year’s Quiksilver Pro Japan - where surfers were riding typhoon waves of up to 2.5 metres (six to eight foot).
“The report from our meteorologist says that this swell will build a little overnight and early tomorrow morning,” said contest director Rod Brooks. “It will then fade during the day but it could be enough to knock over round one. It will return on the weekend as southerly winds are expected to bring in a big swell from the tropical storm called Nabi, which could even develop into a typhoon. The event could therefore finish with a bang!”
Despite having an eight-day “window”, which starts tomorrow, the event can be completed in only four full days as a total of 48 surfers are whittled down to two finalists, thus allowing organisers to wait for conditions that will allow the surfers to surf to their full potential.
The 48 surfers consist of 45 of the World Championship Tour (WCT) elite plus three wildcards, two of whom were decided by the Quiksilver Japan Trials which were held in half to one-metre waves (2-3 foot) at Hebara Beach today, and the third nominated by the event licensee.
The three trialists will therefore include Hideyoshi Tanaka (JAP) and Kenta
Hayashi (JAP), who finished one and two respectively in the trials, and Masatoshi “Mar” Ohno, who was awarded the third wildcard.
Interestingly though, due to a rare overlapping of events – a second-tier World Qualifying Series event is currently being completed in Portugal – WCT rookie Kirk Flintoff (AUS) could potentially be caught between events and may not arrive here in time to compete. In this case another wildcard will be granted entry.
“Kirk’s chances to make the event are very slim,” said ASP Tour Manager Renato Hickel. “He has looked at the weather charts and was hopeful that the event here in Japan would be on hold for a few days, thus giving him enough time to make it to a good scoring round in Portugal and then get here for this event. The ASP has decided that if Kirk does not make it the event organiser, Quiksilver, can allocate another wildcard and in this case that surfer is American Dane Reynolds.”
Event organisers will assess conditions at 7am local time and will make a decision regarding the running of round one. For the full heat draw head to aspworldtour.com
Quiksilver will be doing live webcasts of the next three ASP WCT events on www.quiksilver.com and www.aspworldtour.com
* Quiksilver Pro Japan. 31 August - 7 September
* Boost Mobile Pro presented by Quiksilver. 13-18 September
* Quiksilver Pro France. 23 September - 2 October
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