Cabarita Beach on the North Coast of New South Wales came to life today as 192 of the world's best surfers took to the water on Day 1 of the Telstra Stores Tweed Coast Pro. Despite strong onshore winds Cabarita still managed to produce two-to-three foot peaky waves for competitors to rip into.
In what was his first ever day surfing at Cabarita, young South African Jordy Maree (ZAF) loose and compact surfing saw him post two mid-range scores to sneak though into Round 3.
"This is my first time ever at Cabarita, it's so fun," Maree said. "The waves don't look great from up the top but once your out there it's pretty fun. I'm just stoked to make another heat. I love coming to Australia, it's so nice and there's so many sick waves."
Although the conditions were quite uneven on the wave faces, every now and then a smooth wall would offer itself for tight rail turns. Chris Zaffis (AUS) was fortunate enough to find a number of these waves in his Round 2 Heat. Zaffis lay down a number of silky hacks to post and excellent heat score of 16.25 (out of a possible 20).
"I started off going for every wave I could," Zaffis said. "Then I slowed and started to be a bit more selective. I eventually found those found a couple with those cleaner sections. I didn't know if I was first or second the whole time so I was freaking out a bit."
Kirra-Belle Olsson (AUS) is one of the Central Coasts biggest up and coming talents and in Heat 2 of women's Round 1 she showed this, performing huge vertical backhand re-entries to post an impressive heat total of 16.00 easily advancing to Round 2.
"I haven't won a heat for a while so I'm stoked," Olson said. "It was good to get out there and post a few solid scores, it's definitely a confidence booster. The waves are actually a lot better than they look. I've been up here for a few weeks so I'm used to the banks out there."
French goofyfoot Marie Moana Troja (FRA) put on an absolute backhand clinic in the long righthanders of Cabarita. Moana Troja controlled the majority of the heat until Kobie Enright replaced both of her scores in two waves to move back into first. Mona Troja hung on to progress into Round 3.
"I love going right, I always feel good on my backhand," Maona Troja said. "I've been training a lot and surfing here at Cabarita lately which has helped. The waves today are not too bad today so it will be good to be able to surf again in the contest."
Byron Bay Whiz Kid, 15 year-old Kyuss King (AUS) was a standout today making it through Round's 1 and 2 into Round 3. In his first ever Qualifying Series (QS) event appearance, King surfed beyond his years throwing huge rooster tails of spray on a number of huge gouges.
"This is my first QS so I'm pumped to make a few heats," King said. "I surf here a bit so I knew what to look for out there. The conditions are tough but there is still some really fun ones out there. I can't wait to get back out there for my next heat."
The NSW Pro Surf Series was developed for Australian and international surfers to gain ranking points and prize money on the WSL Qualifying Series. The Series also creates a NSW coastal road trip for all to explore the variety of waves, visit local communities and enjoy NSW surfing culture.
The 2016 NSW Pro Surf Series is proudly supported by the NSW Government through its tourism and major events agency, Destination NSW. The series is also proudly supported by Randwick City Council, Gosford City Council, Destination Tweed, Great Lakes Council & Tourism, NBN, GoGet, Lost Surfboards, World Surf League and Surfing NSW.