The Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) 1-Star Shoe City Pro kicked off competition today in on the South-side of the infamous Huntington Beach Pier. Competitors were treated to peaky 3-5 ft. waves with clean conditions and favorable offshore winds for most of the day. Rounds 1 and 2 were completed in their entirety and high scores were abundant among the international field.
This is the inaugural year for the Shoe City Pro, which is an American Pro Surfing Series (APSS) event, to become ASP sanctioned. The event has given a professional competition platform previously, and now gives locals and travelers alike a chance to build crucial ASP qualification points, while continuing to provide a stage for them showcase their talents.
The day's standout performance went to Jake Davis (USA), who put together a solid 16.93 two-wave total, claiming the highest heat score of the day. The Californian's strong stature allowed him to display a solid combination of powerful, yet technical surfing. Davis chose to wait for the bigger waves and showed no restraint in the commitment of his turns and even took to the air on one of his high scoring waves.
â€œI'm just trying to stay consistent this event. My plan was to just do turns, and even though I did an air, I think I'm better off just sticking to power surfing.â€ Explained Jake, â€œI love that this event is happening now and is so close to home; I hope that there will be more just like it in the future. It gives local surfers a chance to show their skills, because there are so many great surfers around California, and get some ASP points close to home.â€
The San Clemente native will move on to surf in Round 3 tomorrow and will surely be ready to post some more high scores.
Francisco Bellorin (VEN) also put on a show in his Round 2 heat where he pocketed the day's single highest wave score, a near-perfect 9.17. This is only the second time for the Venezuelan to be competing in Huntington Beach and he is still getting used to the nature of California's waves. Bellorin showed no signs of unfamiliarity with his strategy and walked away with a two-wave total of 16.84 and an impressive heat win.
â€œThe waves here are very different from the waves in the Carribean; I am still getting used to the Pacific.â€ Said Bellorin, â€œI made sure to just wait for the good ones and go big once I got them. I really enjoy this wave and have gotten a solid result here before, so hopefully I can do that again this year.â€
Another notable showing came from Huntington Beach local Chris Waring (USA) who posted the second highest single wave score of the day at an 8.87. The 2012 APSS overall champion stuck to his guns next to the pier and picked off a beautiful right hander that allowed him to connect a series of solid turns on the outside sandbar, linking to the strong finish in the shore break.
â€œI realized that the wait in between sets could be pretty long today, so I just made sure to stay busy. Our heat went pretty quiet, but I just waited closer to the pier and I lucked out and got that good right.â€ Said Waring, â€œI'm feeling really relaxed being here at home, and I feel like it really shows in my surfing. Competing has always been a passion of mine I'm always stoked to get some ASP points.â€
The 2014 ASP Shoe City Pro is set to finish tomorrow, October 4th.