The much anticipated final event of the British Pro Surfing Association’s UK Tour title went down to the wire on the weekend, with Australian Micah Lester taking the event and title from a competitive field of Headworx surfers, including returning champion Reubin Pearce and rapidly emerging British talent Matt Capel.
Early favourite Reubin claimed third place in the event, to finish runner-up in the final tour standings. Aiming to become the first ever surfer to win back-to-back BPSA tour titles, the Newquay-based surfer missed out by just 78 points. After some great surfing throughout the tour this year, Reubin battled hard to reach the Newquay Open final, but was not rewarded with the set waves he needed in messy onshore conditions. After 25 tense minutes, Micah emerged with the better waves and was the deserved winner. With Micah first, Reubin needed the Runner-up spot to keep his dream alive, but it was Lew Whittaker who claimed the one big wave that was needed for second spot, leaving Reubin missing out by an excruciating margin in third place to finish second overall on the tour.
Reubin Pearce, surfing to defend his 2005 title (Image: Dave Jones)
Fellow Headworx surfer, Devon local Matt Capel, headed in to the weekend’s event targeting double title wins – in both the Open and Junior divisions. Having already secured the Junior title at the Headworx Welsh Open in September, Matt only needed a semi final finish to claim the Open title. After a slow start in his third round Matt entered the last few minutes requiring an average score of 6.5 to progress in the unfavourable conditions. With minutes to go, he took off on the best set of the heat and hit three big turns all the way to the beach. As the scores came through the opinion was split between the judges with two high scores of 7.0 and 7.5 and one low one at 4.7. Disappointingly the average score was not enough for Matt to progress to the next round and his Men’s Title hopes were over, although with a strong run of other results in previous events Matt finished the tour in fourth place overall, a sign of his bright future.
Up-and-coming Headworx talent Matt Capel (Image: Lucia Griggi)
Experienced Headworx rider and British Team member Johnny Fryer, finished his 2006 season on a high surfing exceptionally well in Newquay only to fall in the semi-finals. Despite a difficult season with injury, Johnny ended up with a respectable 13th place in the final tour table, meaning that Headworx was once again the dominant UK surf team in a fiercely competitive BPSA Tour season.
With the new signing of Jersey talent Fabian Baker, the powerful team of Headworx surfers will continue to be a big force in 2007.