Surf Fitness News
How The Wildcard Beat the World Champ
Surfersvillage Global Surf News, 16 April, 2009 : - - Imagine Owen Wrights situation... Hes drawn the greatest surfer of all time in his heat and he has a week of event delays to think about it .
Im sure those postponements would play on the mind of even the most seasoned of WCT campaigner... Will Kelly stomp all over me? Will I look stupid in front of my sponsors who have been generous enough to grant me a spot in this event? Will I make a goose of myself?
But Wright tackled the delays with mental toughness beyond his years. He mind surfed the Bells Bowl all week planning his back hand attack. He caged the nine-time world champs reputation and didnt let it wear him down. And he checked in his mind for reasons why, he just might, beat the surfing legend and found them.
Then finally it was on. Owen had a plan when he hit the water HIS game plan and he stuck to it. Even when things didnt go as intended, he stuck to his guns, waited for the sets and did what needed to be done. And Wright was right it was enough at the end of the day HEAT 8: Owen Wright 14.67 (AUS) def Kelly Slater 13.83 (USA)
Heat 8 winner Owen Wright (AUS) on beating Nine time ASP World Champion and defending Rip Curl Pro Champion Kelly Slater (USA): I am really happy. It has been a long week waiting to surf against Kelly Slater. I have just been relishing it and waiting for it. Out there I just stayed on my own game and really just concentrated on what I was doing. I just got the set waves and surfed them, then the ocean went flat at the end and I kept the win.
Wright on his preparation for his heat against Slater: I definitely mentally surfed it for a long time, like a whole week. Not everything went right as Kelly got the first wave, I sat calm, knew that I could do it and stuck to my guns and waited for those set waves to come through."
Wright on feeling the pressure of Kelly Slater and ASP World Tour competition: There was a lot of pressure but I just thought to myself, he is human. I can surf, I am not that bad of a surfer. I know he is a nine time world champion but if I just do what I can do, it might be enough at the end of the day."
Wright on moving through to Round 3 at the Rip Curl Pro pres. by Snickers: Ill be taking a lot of confidence into my next heat. I am just rapt with that heat and really happy to get one over Kelly Slater. There wont be many chances like that one come around.
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