In Belmar, New Jersey on September 16th, Knox Harris (Ocean Isle, NC), 17, won the Fins Pro Junior beating out Evan Thompson (Jacksonville Beach, FL), 20, Cam Richards (Garden City Beach, SC), 16, and Californian Griffin Colapinto (San Clemente, CA), 14.
Although Harris was in second at one point during the competition, his solid backhand turns gave him the four points needed to take the lead. He explained, “I caught that second wave and I wasn’t sure if it was going to count or not because I slipped after I was riding out of it. I was skeptical about that and you couldn’t really hear out there so I didn’t figure I was in first. I fell back to second and needed a four. Since I couldn’t hear I think it took the pressure off of me and when I came in all of my friends were freaking out. I got carried up the beach and I was so stoked.”
Knox Harris (USA), 17, on the road to victory in Belmar New Jersey. Photo: ASP/RUBY
Harris started to gain attention on the ASP North America Pro Junior Series when he dominated in both Florida and Virginia. With his win in New Jersery, there is no doubts about his potential. Harris went on to say, “I did decent in ECSC and had a close call with Tanner (Hendrickson) and got bumped out of the Quarters. I made the Quarterfinals at the DNA, but I’m stoked with this win and it’s a good momentum builder for next year.”
Evan Thompson took another second place in New Jersey in his last event on the regional circuit.
“This was my last Pro Junior event and I’m stoked to be in New Jersey again,” Thompson said. “I’m stoked that I made another Final; it’s two events in a row that I’ve gotten second place in. I’m kind of over getting second, but I’m stoked Knox won. He, Cam (Richards) and I are all staying in the same house and we were like a little team and we pretty much dominated.”
With his best result in an ASP event, Cam Richards (Garden City Beach, SC), 16, took to his forehand and locked in to a solid lefthander that allowed him to link together a series of carves to secure his Quarterfinals heat victory. Richards, who is a leader among the East Coasters of his generation, effortlessly tore though the challenging beachbreak conditions and looked at home in the Belmar lineup.
“The waves were really small, but they weren’t too bad,” Richards said. “I was able to find a few little lefts that got me through the heat. I’m used to these small conditions, so I didn’t have too much trouble out there… This is my best result in an ASP event,” Richards said. “I’ve done well in amateur events but this is a good confidence booster to start off the new season.”
Tony Silvagni (Kure Beach, NC), 25, won his fourth consecutive Belmar Longboard title, taking out the ASP Longboard Qualifying Series (LQS) 1-Star 8Eighty Longboard Pro over Southern California standout Steve Newton (San Clemente, CA), 27, reigning ASP World Longboard Champion Taylor Jensen (Carlsbad, CA), 28, and Steve McClean.
Silvagni held on to the lead throughout the heat by catching the longest ride of the day.
“I just went in to it having fun and the surf picked up,” Sivagni said. “We all had scoring potential and Taylor Jensen, Steve Newton and Steve McClean are exceptional surfers. To be able to compete against them in solid head-high surf was a good way to end a contest. I got lucky with a set wave that came in. I took off on a smaller one and got set up for the big bomb set that came in and I had some nice maneuvers on it and it was just fun.”
Steve Newton was also a standout throughout the heat, but was unable to get the scores needed to beat Silvagni.
“The swell is filling in a bit from Tropical Storm Nadine and the actual takeoff area has changed and it’s more like a pointbreak when the waves come in,” Newton said. “We were all stacked up against the jetty and it was a gentleman’s heat and I had my work cut out for me . I started out really quick, with my first two waves being my best scores, but I was just playing catch up the whole time with Tony.”
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