Australian and international competitors have battled windswept conditions and punchy 2-3 peaks along Perth's metropolitan beaches today, as the fourth event of the World Surf League (WLS) sanctioned Subway® Surf Series kicked off this morning at Trigg Point.
After events in VIC and NSW, it was WA's turn to showcased the depth of talent emerging from the Australasian region at the moment. Cool southerly winds, passing showers and bleak overcast conditions couldn't dampen the spirits of an elite group of surfers challenging for their opportunity to compete at the World Surf League Junior Championships in 2018.
"It's been a tough first day of competition," said Surfing WA Contest Director Tom Dickson. "Despite the conditions, the standard of surfing throughout the day has been phenomenal."
Dylan Moffat (Narrabeen, NSW) was the standout surfer of the day, finding the conditions to his liking on his way to the highest individual score as well as the highest combined total of the event so far.
Moffat was explosive at every opportunity, impressing the judges with a near perfect 9.25 (from a possible 10) and finishing on a two-wave total of 18.05 (from a possible 20).
"This is my first time here to WA and I surfed all day out here yesterday just trying to familiarise myself in the line up," said Moffat. "I'm chasing a keeper result here at Trigg and couldn't be happier with a start like that."
Moffat was joined by Reef Heazlewood (Sunshine Coast, QLD), Darcy Crump (Manly, NSW), Jack Thomas (Yallingup, WA) Liam O'Brien (Burleigh, QLD), Dexter Muskens (Coolangatta, QLD) and New Zealand Duo Kehu Butler and Daniel Farr as round one victors.
Cyrus Cox (Margaret River, WA) and Kael Walsh (Yallingup, WA) were amongst the local WA contingent to also progressing through to finals day tomorrow.
13 year-old Zahli Kelly (Cabarita, NSW), stole the show in the women's division displaying her trademark style and flow, scoring an 8.00 and 7.50, to finish her heat with a combined total of 15.50 (from a possible 20).
Showing why she's the current Australasian Junior Qualifying Series (JQS) ratings leader, Kelly performed with maturity beyond her years and is one young surfer keep your eyes on into the future.
"I love it here in WA, I've been a few times now and always enjoyed the trip over here", said Kelly. "I'm stoked to make it through to tomorrow, the swell is forecast to fill in some more tonight."