HUNTINGTON BEACH, California/ USA (Friday, March 31, 2017) – The World Surf League (WSL) Jack’s Surfboards Pro Qualifying Series (QS) fired through near victory-at-sea conditions on hand that offered plenty of scoring potential for opening day. Surfers took full advantage of the powerful, three-to-six foot windswell and posted brilliant performances throughout the day. Round One and Round Two, Heats 1 – 8 were completed in their entirety with the weekend’s matchups taking shape.
Micky Clarke (USA) blasted through his debut Round One heat with powerful maneuvers on the outside and connected all the way inside to finish for an 8.50 (out of a possible 10) — the highest single-wave score of the day. The Ventura, California-native has continued building his heat strategy in the past years within the Junior Tour, but now looks to make a mark on the QS.
“It’s always like déjà vu here in Huntington with the waves being so similar each event this time of year — which is always good since we have something to ride,” Clarke said. “For these type of events, every one is stacked and this being a 1,500 there’s some big guys here so it’s a little more intimidating. But, I’ve been doing more personal travel and really getting in my freesurfing which is helping my mindset coming into these events. When you have a good section to get off a good turn and you freesurf all the time, you know the feeling of what a good turn feels like so taking that into a heat you feel a lot more confident.”
Eithan Osborne (USA) capped off Round One with the biggest performance of the day and earned highest heat total, a 14.80 (out of a possible 20). After a devastating knee injury last Fall, Osborne’s back in a jersey and looked to be in great form with aggressive lines off the lip and critical maneuvers when the wave demanded them.
“I’m just pumped to be back and it’s great confidence to win your first heat in the water — hopefully I can keep it going,” Osborne said. “I’ve been out nearly five months and being away for that long just makes everything feel that much better. Getting a good result here would be a big confidence moving forward into the year. I know if I do good here than I can do good other places just with everyone showing up for this — hopefully get to surf against some of the bigger guys here and try to give it my best.”
The Japanese contingent is back in Huntington and Rinta Oooto (JPN) led the charge with a great performance in Round Two. The Tokyo-born, now Chiba-native, is used to these type of beach breaks and put that knowledge to use finding two gems that allowed him to open up. Oooto’s backhand was relentless in the heavy conditions and may be a threat to some of the QS elite this weekend at just 16-years-old.
“I’ve been here for the NSSA competitions in the past, but this is my first QS I’ve competed in at Huntington,” Oooto said “It’s a great experience getting to see all these good surfers from around the world here, it’s super helpful to watch them and learn what I can. It was important to wait for the better looking waves and get a big maneuver on the outside, then make that connection to finish on the inside to end on — that’s traditional Huntington Beach. It’s really important to build experience in the QS at an early age so I can get points and set myself up for the future.”
Jhonny Corzo (MEX) has grown up through the WSL Junior Tour and now finds himself on the QS hunt for vital points of his own. Though limited to travel, the Mexican surfer takes full advantage of contests just across his home border in California and did just that today. Corzo posted an excellent 8.17 with his powerful backhand snaps and sweeping cutbacks, but knows the challenge that’s laid before him at this event.
“It’s such a good feeling to make it through a Round on the QS and be into Round Three here,” Corzo said. “It’s been really hard this year, I haven’t gotten the results I’m looking for so I’m hoping to change that here. My backside is my weapon since my homebreak is a lefthander at La Punta so I’m really confident on the lefts — luckily I found some good ones out there and felt great to unload on them. I’m so stoked to see more events like this coming to California since it’s a quick, cheap flight to get here and compete. It really helps with building some points and making some rounds close to home.”
The remaining Round Two heats will finish tomorrow beginning at 8:00 a.m. PST before moving into Round Three — which is scheduled to be completed in its entirety. Tune in live for all the action once again at www.worldsurfleague.com, or by downloading the WSL App to stream it on your mobile device.
Remaining Jack’s Surfboards Pro QS1,500 Round Two Matchups:
Heat 9: Danny Fuller (HAW), Victor Done (USA), Eddie Lester (USA), Barron Mamiya (HAW)
Heat 10: Hideyoshi Tanaka (JPN), Kaisa Kawamura (JPN), Jeremey Carter (USA), Luke Marks (USA)
Heat 11: Knox Harris (USA), Mitchell Salazar (MEX), Hunter Lyslaught (USA), Dylan Hord (USA)
Heat 12: Braden Jones (USA), Keijiro Nishi (JPN), Micky Clarke (USA), Willie Safreed (USA)
Heat 13: John Mel (USA), Paul Pugliesi (USA), Sebastian Williams (ZAF), Yuri Ogasawara (JPN)
Heat 14: Kei Kobayashi (USA), Crosby Colapinto (USA), Kade Matson (USA), Jonah Pierce (USA)
Heat 15: Kairi Noro (JPN), Love Hodel (HAW), Elijah Gates (HAW), Anthony Boulanger (USA)
Heat 16: Arashi Kato (JPN), Martin Jeri (PER), Elijah Osborne (USA), Elijah Fox (HAW)
Jack’s Surfboards Pro QS1,500 Round Two Results:
Heat 1: Daiki Tanaka (JPN) 13.20, Renan Peres (BRA) 12.16, Tyler Thornsely (USA) 9.70, Lucas Vicenete (BRA) 9.30
Heat 2: Gabriel Andre (BRA) 11.24, Kaiki Yamanaka (JPN) 10.30, Nate Dorman (USA) 6.34, Ryota Matsushita (JPN) 5.17
Heat 3: Rinta Oooto (JPN) 14.00, Brady McKenzie (USA) 8.83, Dustin Richardson (USA) 5.10, Noah Beschen (HAW) 4.67
Heat 4: Jhonny Corzo (MEX) 13.34, Roberto Araki (CHL) 11.07, Micha Crozier (USA) 8.07, Pedro Todaro (BRA) 6.07
Heat 5: Nicolas Vargas (CHL) 8.80, Rey Hernandez (MEX) 8.26, Eliott Napias (PYF) 7.97, Austin Neumann (USA) 7.57
Heat 6: Namor Cayres (BRA) 12.73, Chris Michalak (AUS) 12.16, Andrew Jacobson (USA) 9.83, Taro Watanabe (USA) 8.44
Heat 7: Jake Kelley (USA) 13.56, Geovane Ferreira (BRA) 10.10, Cobie Gittner (USA) 8.97, Jackson Butler (USA) 7.50
Heat 8: Chris Ward (USA) 13.30, Ryland Rubens (USA) 12.13, Tyler Gunter (USA) 12.07, Jack Boyes (USA) 9.13
Jack’s Surfboards Pro QS1,500 Round One Results:
Heat 1: Lucas Vicenete (BRA) 14.20, Ryota Matsushita (JPN) 11.34, Christopher Kervin (USA) 7.27, Sean Woods (USA) 7.96,
Heat 2: Gabriel Andre (BRA) 12.64, Tyler Thomsley (USA) 9.73, Taishi Kume (JPN) 7.57, Facundo Carranza (BRA) 5.56
Heat 3: Dustin Richardson (USA) 10.73, Pedro Todaro (BRA) 10.60, Christopher Bluthardt (HAW) 8.63, Kainaru Kato (HAW) 6.30
Heat 4: Roberto Araki (CHL) 10.83, Brady McKenzie (USA) 9.54, Sage Burke (USA) 9.37, London Almida (USA) 4.63
Heat 5: Rey Hernandez (MEX) 12.40, Namor Cayres (BRA) 11.16, Kosuke Okamura (JPN) 7.53, Kent Nishiya (USA) 6.74
Heat 6: Taro Watanabe (JPN) 11.20, Eliott Napias (PYF) 8.83, Mason Barnes (USA) 5.37, Keoni Picollo (HAW) 5.00
Heat 7: Geoven Ferriera (BRA) 14.03, Ryland Rubens (USA) 10.36, Ted Navarro (USA) 8.93, David Economos (USA) 7.87
Heat 8: Jack Boyes (USA) 13.10, Jackson Butler (USA) 10.00, Braden Defilippo (USA) 6.63, Giorgio Gomez (USA) 5.43
Heat 9: Eddie Lester (USA) 10.66, Luke Marks (USA) 8.70, Ethan Grant (USA) 8.60, Tyler Muth (USA) 3.80
Heat 10: Jeremy Carter (USA) 11.60, Barron Mamiya (HAW) 11.54, Matthew Pagan (USA) 10.83, Roi Kanazawa (JPN) 6.40
Heat 11: Hunter Lyslaught (USA) 10.57, Willi Safreed (USA) 9.60, Ezra Sitt (HAW) 9.30, Logan Landry (CAN) 6.20
Heat 12: Micky Clarke (USA) 14.20, Dyland Hord (USA) 9.66, Sam Coffey (USA) 8.20, Joao Vitor (USA) 3.23
Heat 13: Sebastian Williams (ZAF) 11.43, Jonah Pierce (USA) 9.23, Chucky Rigano (USA) 7.00, Frank Chenault (USA) 3.50
Heat 14: Kade Matson (USA) 12.00, Yuri Ogasawar (JPN) 8.60, Matt King (USA) 6.77, William Peckett (PYF) 4.40
Heat 15: Elijah Gates (HAW) 11.77, Remy Juboori (USA) 9.77, Elijah Fox (HAW) 10.33, Richard Salem (HAW) 9.50
Heat 16: Eithan Osborne (USA) 14.80, Anthony Boulanger (USA) 8.90, Kala Willard (HAW) 7.80, Ives Lopes (BRA) 5.63