TEAHUPOO, Tahiti - A third successive lay-day has been called at
the Billabong Pro in Tahiti as on-shore winds and average wave conditions
continue to frustrate the worlds best surfers.
While most surfers have found the odd Teahupoo barrel on the down days,
nine time world champion Kelly Slater (Florida, USA) and 2008 Billabong
Pro Tahiti finalist Manoa Drollet (PYF, Tahiti) scored a dream session on
one of Tahiti’s outer islands.
Slater said he has been waiting for 11 years to surf the break that only
turns on under rare conditions.
The 6 to 8 ft (2.5 metre) right hand waves were captured on film at the
secret location. The incredible wave quality saw Tahitian charger Drollet
and Slater slot into barrel after barrel on the long walling waves.
His fellow world tour competitors at Teahupoo could only watch on in awe
as once again Slater stole the show.
Three time Billabong Pro Tahiti champion Slater will be looking to turn
around a slow start to his 2009 season with a top result at Teahupoo. The
37 year-old is currently ranked at no.24 in the world after two equal 17th
placings in the opening two events on the ASP world tour.
The Floridian will take on European star Aritz Aranburu who caused the
elimination of Californian wonder kid Dane Reynolds from the opening round
of competition. Basque surfer Aranburu dropped into the set of his round
one heat with just a couple of minutes remaining and slammed the door shut
Event No. 3 of 10 on the 2009 ASP World Tour, the Billabong Pro Tahiti
completed the opening 14 heats of Round 1 last Saturday, but has since
held off in hopes of improved conditions which are expected to arrive
within the next 48 hours.
Event organizers will reconvene tomorrow morning at 6:30am to assess
conditions for a possible 7:30am start.
Surfline, official forecasters for the Billabong Pro Tahiti, are calling
for a moderate WSW swell to fill throughout today with favorable winds,
followed by another WSW swell from Thursday through the weekend.
BILLABONG PRO TAHITI ROUND 2 MATCH-UPS:
Heat 1: C.J. Hobgood (USA) vs. Phillip MacDonald (AUS)
Heat 2: Jeremy Flores (FRA) vs. Jay Thompson (AUS)
Heat 3: Kieren Perrow (AUS) vs. TBA
Heat 4: Taj Burrow (AUS) vs. Marlon Lipke (DEU)
Heat 5: Fredrick Patacchia (HAW) vs. Josh Kerr (AUS)
Heat 6: Adrian Buchan (AUS) vs. TBA
Heat 7: Taylor Knox (USA) vs. Kai Otton (AUS)
Heat 8: Joel Parkinson (AUS) vs. Heiarii Williams (PYF)
Heat 9: Bede Durbidge (AUS) vs. Andy Irons (HAW)
Heat 10: Bobby Martinez (USA) vs. TBA
Heat 11: Adriano de Souza (BRA) vs. Dustin Barca (HAW)
Heat 12: Jordy Smith (ZAF) vs. TBA
Heat 13: Kelly Slater (USA) vs. Aritz Aranburu (EUK)
Heat 14: Damien Hobgood (USA) vs. Dean Morrison (AUS)
Heat 15: Mick Fanning (AUS) vs. Ben Dunn (AUS)
Heat 16: Tom Whitaker (AUS) vs. Tim Boal (FRA)