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News provided by ASP World Tour on 2 March 2006

Rookies Bobby Martinez (USA), Mikael Picon (FRA) and David Weare (ZAF) caused some major upsets today when they eliminated three of pro surfing’s biggest stars in round two of the Quiksilver Pro presented by Samsung.

The event, the first of 12 on the Foster’s ASP Men’s World Tour, was shifted from its base to about 200 metres down the beach into Rainbow Bay, to shelter from the gusting winds, and as a result scored excellent one to 1.5 metre (three to five foot) waves.

The three newcomers to the 2006 tour all surfed with reckless abandon with Martinez notching up the highest wave score of the event to date – a 9.93.

Surfing with his back to the wave, the 24-year-old from Santa Barbara, scratched into a clean looking wave and immediately went to town throwing large vertical re-entry manoeuvres.

He then managed to slip into a long tube ride and when he emerged the huge crowd cheered loudly.

Martinez, as to be expected, was more than over the moon at beating a surfer who has long been his hero.

“I’m really excited to have made that heat and be here as part of this tour,” said Martinez. “Mark is my favourite surfer in the world, he always has been and always will be; I think I just got lucky. I was nervous and really excited at the same time. Even if I lost at least I could say that one of my first tour heats was with Occy and that’s great for me…

“To make the win was just a bonus. I was really nervous but I had to tell myself that if I let that nervousness come through I was going to lose because I was with Occy and he’s a former world champion. I tried to forget about it and just surf.”

Also turning heads today was Picon when he defeated 2005 Foster’s ASP Men’s World Tour Rookie of the Year Fred Patacchia, who prior to the event, was tipped to make a huge impact on this year’s tour.

The Frenchman looked at ease on all his waves and one in particular he rode for over 150 metres executing numerous hard edged top turns.

Picon’s smooth style was appreciated by the judges who awarded him an 8.17.

“I am really happy with the win,” said Picon. “Fred is a really good surfer and I admire the way he surfs. I knew I’d have to surf really well today, I was pretty slow in my first heat so I was trying to improve that during this heat.”

Looking for feedback on his performance Picon asked none other than Kelly Slater (USA) for advice.

“I asked Kelly what he thought about my first heat,” said Picon. “He recommended getting a shorter board.”

South African, Weare, who defeated Brazilian hero Victor Ribas had to overcome the standard pre-heat new-comer nerves but was made to feel at home when he found the wave really suited his style.

“I was a little bit nervous at the beginning,” said Weare. “But there were some pretty good waves out there – the kind I like. We have a few right-handers that come off the groynes back home in Durban so I have grown up surfing mainly right-handers my whole life. I was pretty comfortable out there.”

Of the more seasoned surfers Taj Burrow (AUS) revealed he has found new motivation after a foot injury stopped a late season run home last year.

Burrow had three months of rehabilitation for the broken extremity and the training associated with the recuperation program has given the popular West Australian new strength and endurance and it showed in his win against trials winner Ben Dunn.

“I had to turn the injury into as many positives as I could,” said Burrow. “For the first time in my life I was forced to train and forced to eat well and really look after myself. I was so bummed after three months on the couch that I was so hungry to get back in the water. I think it could definitely see me getting better results this year. The whole experience made me want a world title even more. I don’t want to sit on the couch for that long ever again, I want to be up here with the best getting results.”

The swell is expected to build further over night and some larger set waves were beginning to push through late in the day. The only set back could be the torrential rain that is predicted to persist over the next few days.

Organisers will decide on the proceedings for tomorrow in the morning at 6.30am local time.

Round Two Results:

HEAT 1: Phillip MacDonald (AUS) 15.70 def Jeremy Flores (REU) 11.67
HEAT 2: Taj Burrow (AUS) 17.00 def Ben Dunn (AUS) 11.97
HEAT 3: Nathan Hedge (AUS) 14.50 def Jay Thompson (AUS) 13.94
HEAT 4: Bruce Irons (HAW) 17.00 def Luke Munro (AUS) 12.50
HEAT 5: Jake Paterson (AUS) 16.33 def Jarrad Howse (AUS) 13.16
HEAT 6: Mikael Picon (FRA) 14.84 def Fredrick Patacchia (HAW) 11.50
HEAT 7: David Weare (ZAF) 14.33 def Victor Ribas (BRA) 11.57
HEAT 8: Dean Morrison (AUS) 15.90 def Yuri Sodre (BRA) 12.33
HEAT 9: Tom Whitaker (AUS) 15.50 def Pedro Henrique (BRA) 14.36
HEAT 10: Paulo Moura (BRA) 12.23 def Shaun Cansdell (AUS) 12.13
HEAT 11: Bobby Martinez (USA) 18.10 def Mark Occhilupo (AUS) 13.20
HEAT 12: Travis Logie (ZAF) 13.50 def Luke Stedman (AUS) 13.40
HEAT 13: Taylor Knox (USA) 13.63 def Mick Lowe (AUS) 10.00
HEAT 14: Peterson Rosa (BRA) 13.33 def Chris Ward (USA) 11.47
HEAT 15: Darren O’Rafferty (AUS) 14.83 def Tim Reyes (USA) 12.34
HEAT 16: Marcelo Nunes (BRA) 14.67 def Bede Durbidge (AUS) 12.84


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