Photo: Michel Bourez (Tahiti, PYF), 23, former ASP European Champion (2006) has started his second consecutive year amongst the ASP Top 45 in good form. Nicknamed the Spartan for his natural strength and power-surfing, Bourez grabs the mic. [Copyright: Aquashot/aspeurope.com]
While enjoying a break from the ASP World Tour after three events, Tahiti native Michel Bourez (PYF), 23, sat down to give us some news and insights about the tour, his training and his goals as the second part of the year starts.
Bourez, who equaled his best result ever in Brazil during the Santa Catarina Pro finishing equal 5th overall, remains in excellent position to “make the cut” when the ASP elite contingent changes from a 45-man field to thirty-two members, after the Billabong Pro Tahiti where he expects to shine in front of his home crowd.
In the middle of a new project called the Michel Bourez Invitational put-up by his main sponsor Nike 6.0, Bourez gives a look back on his 2010 start and how he feels about life on tour. Check out the words from the Spartan…
“Things have been good since the new year started and I am sitting No. 12 on the ASP World title race at the moment so I am pretty satisfied. I had a good run in Brazil and made the Quarterfinals and right now, I have the feeling I can make the cut after the event in Tahiti next August. I’ve been enjoying some time at home since the event finished in Brazil, spent a month surfing and seeing my friends. These moments are very important to find your balance and recharge batteries. Next for me is a trip with my sponsor Nike 6.0 and I can’t wait to be there. The team is great, I have an excellent relationship with my sponsors and am very proud to represent them wherever I go.
I’ve been through several things to try and stay at my best, with a major focus on my pro-model boards in relation with FireWire. I am really working on finding the right board for every stop on tour and all its specifics. I feel more experienced and definitely ready to get better results in 2010 so it’s all pretty positive at the moment. I am getting used to the tour, getting more mature as well and I feel comfortable with the rest of the guys on tour, like I really deserve to be amongst them. The different waves on tour really fit my surfing and give me a great opportunity to show my skills and to compete in great conditions.
Since I qualified in 2009, my life has changed a lot. I feel like I’ve achieved my dream by becoming a member of the ASP World Tour. Things are different now though, I still feel so lucky about my life and career but my dream has evolved and I need to stay focus and awake to achieve new goals. The change this year and the cut from 45 to 32 guys is a radical move with each and every heat becoming even more crucial. But a change is positive, and when you are a member of that elite contingent, you should always be focused towards the title so I reckon everyone is already into that new mode. The added pressure forces you to be at 100% physically and mentally anytime, and it’s a lot of sacrifice and commitment but this is what it takes to win a title.
Before going into J-Bay, I still remain focus on my main goal this year, to finish in the Top 5 at the end of the year. I really don’t want to have any regrets when I look back on my career so I’d rather aim at serious goals right now. So I am giving my best at every event but still enjoying my time with the will to improve and remain a member of the ASP Top 45 as long as possible.
The next stop in South Africa is one of my favorites in the world since my run last year (in 2009, Michel scored a perfect 10 point ride to oust Mick Fanning in Round 2). I will use a similar board to the one I used last year, adapted to the long rides with lots of potential at every section. I just hope we get good waves for the whole event. I’ll finish with a special thanks to my girlfriend Vaimiti, my family and hers, who are always supporting me whether it’s at the event or through the webcast. Of course, I want to thank my sponsors Nike 6.0, Red Bull, Firewire, Kelly Surf Shop, Future Fins, OAM, Air Tahiti Nui… I wouldn’t be where I am without their support.
Speak soon, see you in J-Bay.”