Two-time World Champion Mick Fanning showed he is well and truly ready for the 2012 surfing season with a strong opening heat win at the Association of Surfing Professionals Breaka Burleigh Pro at Burleigh Heads...
In front of a large patriotic crowd, Fanning 's fast, fluid and powerful style was on display and he looks set for a big 2012 assault on the world title.
Fanning comprehensively defeated highly rated young Brazilian Peterson Crisanto on a scoreline of 14.40 to Crisanto on 12.90.
'I’m about 90% right now and aiming to be 100% fit for the Quiksilver Pro.'
“I’ve had a bit of time off, missed Pipeline late last year and I’m injury free right now which is great,” said the Red Bull-backed Fanning. “My fitness is coming together, I’m doing this event to brush the bugs out and I’d say I’m about 90% right now and aiming to be 100% fit right on the Quiksilver Pro in about 12 days.”
Another Red Bull athlete, Sunshine Coast surfer Julian Wilson, was also super impressive today landing multiple big aerial moves in a close fought heat win over fellow Australian Matt Wilkinson. Similar to Fanning, Wilson believes the Breaka is perfect preparation for the season.
“I felt better today surfing that heat and I’ll go into tomorrow’s final day confident for sure,” said Wilson. "It takes a few heats to really get your competition frame of mind right - I fell on a few today that I normally wouldn’t but that’s what it’s about and I’m looking forward to tomorrow."
While Fanning and Wilson were awesome, they were outshone by emerging USA super kid 17 year-old - and yet another Red Bull-backed surfer - Kolohe Andino.
Andino again posted the day’s top scoring heat win in an aerial shoot-out against Australia’s Josh Kerr who also advanced in 2nd place with Andino’s top two scoring rides coming in at 17.96 to Kerr on 15.96.
Andino has won all five heats here as he began in round one and every one of his scoring rides has included massive aerial moves. He began today’s heat with a huge aerial on the outside Burleigh Point and finished the heat with an equally impressive aerial on the Burleigh Heads beach break - about 500m down from the point.
It has been an ominous performance from Andino, Burleigh Heads is a point break which is not ideal for aerials but Andino’s surfing simply goes to the air regardless, and he has shown glimpses of his overall surfing abilities as well.
Tomorrow will be finals day with the event to run in front of large crowds throughout the morning.
Meanwhile, at the first day of the Australian Open of Surfing Men's Pro Junior, Red Bull-backed Californian Connor Coffin scored the second highest heat total of the day 14.75 (out of a possible 20) thanks to some huge power carves.
"This is busier than the first day of US Open usually is, so I can't wait to see what it's like at the end of the week," said Coffin. "The Australasian Pro Junior events are super hard, so I'm stoked to make the heat. We don't have a lot of Junior events in North America so I decided to stay over here and have a go and I'm really enjoying it.
"Today, the waves are a lot like Huntington Beach so, I just focused on catching the good ones and the waves I caught were super fun."
The Breaka Burleigh Pro will be broadcast LIVE via breakaburleighsurfpro.com.au
- Official ASP World Tour website
- More surfing on redbull.com
- Quiksilver Pro preview | Mick Fanning back in the groove
- Michel Bourez Q&A