Blue skies over tiny clean waves… This was the frame for the second day of the Movistar Pantin Classic 4 Star WQS event in Galicia, Spain. The 96 men remaining in the event didn’t have much choice with the bad forecast showing same conditions for the rest of the week, 1 to 2ft waves.
Today’s outstanding performance came from german surfer Marlon Lipke (DEU). Winner of the Rip Curl Pro Peniche at the beginnig of the year, runner up in the Superbock Pro Cordoama in July, Lipke didn’t get any good results in the main WQS in August but seemed unstoppable today.
Despite his powerful style suiting more with solid conditions, Lipke broke all expectations when he posted two back-to-back impressive scores including an 8.83 and a 9.27 to secure a two wave combined total of 18.10 pts out of possible 20.
“I was lucky because it all came to me during that heat. I was focused and knew it wasn’t an easy time with the conditions. But I got those two waves in a row and just surfed them the best I could.”
Asked about the ratings, “I don’t really look at any goal or ratings. I need to focus back on the way I surf and get better results. If you win heats, you are going to step up in the ratings anyway.” Lipke currently sits 5th on the regional ratings and remains one of the favourites for the European Pro Surf Tour crown.
Longtime regional competitor and several times European Pro Surf Tour top 5 member, Pablo Solar (ESP) surprised the few crowds in the soft waves, posting the second highest heat score of the day with 15.16 points out of possible 20. Opening his campaign with the best single wave score of the day, an 8.83, Solar only surfed four waves during the twenty five minute battle, backing up his first ride with a solid 6.33 to advance.
“It’s really difficult to get the good waves. I waited for the small sets and got the waves I wanted, but it seemed like there were less and less waves by the end of the heat, and I’m stoked to get through,” said Solar.
Earlier in the day Flynn Novak (HAW) had posted an unexpected 14.50 pts tally to secure his spot for round 3, ahead of former European Pro Surf Tour champion Iker Fuentes (EUK), eliminating yesterday’s highscorer Romain Laulhé (FRA).
“It’s so difficult… I didn’t believe I got this 6.57 but I guess it was a bigger wave, and that made me confident to wait for another good one. Then I got this last 7.93 and felt lucky to make it through. And the water is freezing, that’s for sure,” finished Novak.
Most of yesterday’s highscorers including Antonio Bortoletto (ZAF), managed to get further in the event. Used to difficult conditions he’s been facing on the World Qualifying Series for a few years, Bortoletto was all smiles out when he left the water.
“I’m really happy to keep going in the event. Actually the waves are okay but the wind makes it harder as it pulls you off if you are the wrong angle. The good thing is the peak is really well defined and offers both right and lefthanders which makes it possible for all four of us out there.”
Talking about the ratings, “I’ve had an average year. I didn’t make any good result in the crucial events and eventhough I had this round 5 finish in Newquay, it doesn’t make any difference. I’ve been on tour for a while and with the level going so hig and more and more event, it is really tough to remain at the top.”
Respectively #6 and #4 of the 2007 European Pro Junior tour, Marc Lacomare (FRA) and Charles Martin (GLP) outlined experienced surfers Tevita Gukilau (AUS) and Tom Wimmer (AUS) in heat 7, using their speed and technical skills to advance.
After getting the best european result in the biggest WQS event of the year at the Rip Curl Pro Super Series, Lacomare is on a good roll. Sixth european junior, the 17-year-old surfer from Hossegor -France- is now chasing points for his WQS campaign and has still lots of potential.
“I’m having fun on tour and some good results for my first year. I was focused on the pro juniors until Portugal and I wish I did better than 6th on the ratings… I’ll be on all european WQS events until the end of the year, and I hope I can get points for both European Pro Surf Tour and WQS ratings,” confessed Lacomare currently 21st of the European Pro Surf Tour.
The Movistar Pantin Classic will restart tomorrow at 9.30 AM with round 3 of the men’s event. For more information log on www.aspeurope.com