The stage is set for the second annual Western Australia Pro Surf Series which will commence this weekend with the first of two events, the Mandurah Pro looking to get underway tomorrow. The back-to-back WSL Qualifying Series (QS) 1000 (Mandurah Pro and Cape Naturaliste Pro) events will see over 60 male and female competitors from 9 countries battle it out for all-important WSL QS ranking points.
One of WA's most famous surfer's Felicity Palmateer is known the world over for charging massive waves on the WSL Big Wave Tour and for a few wildcard appearances in Championship Tour events such as the Margaret River Pro. In between chasing huge swells around the globe, Flick has made it back to WA to compete in familiar surroundings at the Mandurah Pro.
"I competed down in Mandurah for a ‘Rip Curl Grom Search' when I was a kid," Palmateer said. "We surfed at Avalon which is a lefthander and I was loving it so I'm looking forward to competing there again. Coming back to WA to compete is always a priority. All of my friends and family are in WA so it's a good way to catch up and I always get amazing support whilst competing."
"Having QS events of this size in WA is really important for the pathway of aspiring competitive surfers from this state. Being so remote, it's expensive and difficult for surfers to travel to competitions around Australia and the world. Having events here gives young surfers an opportunity to get some experience against traveling surfers and gain some QS points to build their seed. Most importantly, it will be a really fun couple of weeks for all of the competitors."
The City of Mandurah Mayor Rhys Williams is thrilled to have the Western Australia Pro Surf Series come to town again and bring with it an international group of surfers who can enjoy what the area has to offer.
"The Mandurah Pro is a great way to profile what our City has to offer, but it's also a great way to engage with our local sporting clubs and our top athletes," Williams said. "We're doing a lot of work trying to get a heap of different events here in the community across all different sports. I'm really grateful to Surfing WA and WSL for hosting the WA Pro Surf Series here in Mandurah and hope the weather turns on for the surfers."
Brother and sister duo Harry McPherson and younger sister April McPherson, have been awarded wildcard spots in the Mandura Pro. The surfing siblings from Falcon were nominated by the Mandurah Boardriders Club to fill the highly sought-after positions after some impressive performances at local, state and national levels over the past 12 months. The duo will now have the opportunity to compete on home soil against some of the very best surfers from across the Australia/Oceania region.
With four days to run the Mandurah Pro, Surfing WA contest director Justin Majeks is confident surfers will get plenty of opportunities to showcase their skills at the best spots in the Mandurah area over the coming days.
"We've got a mixed forecast for the Mandurah Pro, we'll likely hit the ground running on Saturday with the opening rounds of Men's and Women's competition, before picking the eyes out of Sunday and Monday," Majeks said. "We're tracking a really good swell for the last day of the event waiting period on Tuesday which will likely be a big day of competition for both Men and Women."
The Mandurah Pro men's and women's QS1,000 events will run from October 19 - 22.
The WA Pro Surf Series has been made possible thanks to a successful partnership between Surfing WA, WSL, City of Mandurah, Visit Mandurah, City of Busselton, and the Western Australian Government, through Tourism WA.