Kai Hing (Sunshine Coast, QLD/AUS) posting a near-perfect 9.50 out of a possible 10 today at the Chiko MP Classic. Pic ASP/Will H-S.
COOLANGATTA/QLD (1st February, 2014) - The 2014 Chiko MP Classic got underway in pulsing three foot surf at Duranbah today completing 16 heats of Round 1 and 9 heats of Round 2, with an exciting mix of seasoned veterans and emerging talent hitting the water. The Chiko MP Classic honours Australian surfing icon Michael Peterson, with surfers fighting for the prestigious event title and the all-important ASP 1-Star Qualifying Series points and prize-money.
Wade Carmichael (Central Coast, NSW/AUS), kicked off his 2014 competitive campaign with an easy win in the first heat of Round 2. Carmichael who finished last year ranked in the ASP top 50 is looking to start 2014 with a win at the Chiko MP Classic.
“It always feels nice to post some good scores in your first heat,” Carmichael said. “I’ve been training hard to prepare for this season and this ASP 1-Star event is the perfect warm up for the up coming 6-Star events in Manly and Newcastle. There’s a lot of good surfers in this event and that’s why I’m excited to be here, they are the guys I want to surf against.”
Dean Bowen (South Coast, NSW/AUS) posted two impressive heat wins at the Chiko MP Classic today. Bowen used his trademark explosive backhand bashes to secure a spot in the third round that will hit the water tomorrow morning.
“I’ve got to work on getting off to a better start, it took me 10 minutes to score over a 3.00 in that heat,” Bowen said. “It was good to surf against Chris (Friend), we’ve surfed against each other ever since we were kids, he got off to a good start, but I caught up and just got past him in the end.”
Kai Hing (Sunshine Coast, QLD/AUS) scored a monster 9.50 (out of a possible 10), one of the best scores of the day for a series of razor sharp forehand carves and snaps. Hing advanced in first position in his Round 1 bout this morning and advanced in 2nd place behind Matt Banting in Round 2 this afternoon.
“I was nervous this morning because I saw names like Bede Durbidge and Adam Melling in the draw,” Hing said. “Then I went out and fell on my first wave and as I was paddling back out I saw Quinn (Bruce) get a good one and I knew I had to step up. The surf looks tough from the sand, but when you’re out there it’s better than it looks.”
Billy Stairmand (New Zealand) made an impressive start to his 2014 Chiko MP Classic campaign, posting an 8.00 out of a possible 10. Stairmand is in red hot form after taking out the national titles in New Zealand less than two weeks ago.
“I just won the nationals at home which was a good way to start the year,” Stairmand said. “I just wanted to come over to Australia early to warm up for the year and this event has heaps of big names, so it’s good to keep the ball rolling.”
Dave Reardon-Smith (Sunshine Coast, QLD/AUS), 2006 Chiko MP Classic champion claimed another scalp today, winning his Round 2 heat over ASP WCT surfer Bede Durbidge and Gold Coast young guns Luke Hynd and Mitch Parkinson. Parkinson is last year’s event champion, but was outclassed by Reardon-Smith and Durbidge in a stacked Round 2 clash.
“I won this event back when MP was still alive and now that he’s passed away it makes the event title even more special,” Reardon-Smith said. “It’s great to see his family still come down and watch and enjoy the event. I’ve had a good start this year, I saw the names that I drew in that heat and I knew I had to be on my game. My boards are working great so I just went out there and stuck to my plan and did my thing and it worked.”
The 2014 Chiko MP Classic is proudly supported by Surfing Queensland, ASP, Chiko, Gold Coast City Council, Be the Influence, Australian Skin Cancer Clinics, World Surfaris, HIF, Coastalwatch Plus, Surfing Life Magazine, and 5 and a half eyewear
About MP Michael Peterson is one of Coolangatta’s original ‘Coolie Kids’. He was on the forefront of the shortboard revolution in Australia in the 1970s and was one of the most successful professional surfers of his era, winning at Bells Beach three times, and claiming the first ever man-on-man surfing competition event win at the Stubbies Pro at Burleigh Heads, in classic conditions over Mark Richards. MP passed away last year and will forever be remembered as one of Australia’s favourite surfing sons because of his feats in competition and because of the way he dominated sessions at Kirra as featured in the cult surf film Morning of the Earth.