The 4-Star Vans Pro was called ON today in small, but contestable surf of 1-to-2 feet. surf. All 16 heats of Round 2 were completed as competitors made the best out of the day's conditions.
The standout surfer of the day was Florida's Cody Thompson (USA), who managed to draw powerful turns from the otherwise weak waves. Thompson scored the day's highest single-wave score of a 9.00, backing it with an 8.83, comprising the day's highest heat score of a 17.83 total.
â€œI've been watching it pretty closely and I was a little worried about the conditions this morning, but luckily there was a little window during our heat where the tide dropped just enough for a few opportunities," said Thompson. "Hopefully it keeps getting better, but I am stoked to get a couple waves. I haven't surfed in two weeks because it's been so flat on the East Coast.â€
Last year Thompson took top honors at the inaugural ASP 4-Star Rip Curl Pro Puerto Rico, which was his first Qualification Series (QS) win, and looks to get back on the podium for the first time in 2014 in Virginia Beach.
Another surfer who made a solid showing was Killian Garland (USA), who took first in Heat 10 of Round 2. The California native put together two impressive scores for a two-wave total of 15.17 points, one of the day's higher heat totals. Garland showed no signs of adversity in the small conditions and is looking to carry this momentum into Round 3.
â€œI sat for a bit just trying to wait for a good one, and then a decent-sized right came through where I was able to put together a couple snaps," said Garland. "After that I waited even longer and got my 8.00 right at the end of the heat. I've been doing a couple QS events here and there and I'm just fired up to compete right now.â€
Jonah Carter (USA) also put on a display of small-wave expertise in Heat 14, where he dropped an impressive 8.33 on a long right-hander. The tough conditions at the end of the day didn't stop the regular-footer from connecting a few solid rides to advance with not only a heat win but also one of the higher single-wave scores of the day.
â€œThe way the judging has been today it seems like if you get two or three good turns you're going to get into the excellent range, so I just kept that in mind and hoped for the best," said Carter. "My board feels good, too. It's a Mayhem epoxy and it's been giving me that extra bit of energy that you need out there. I'm really stoked to get through.â€