Coolangatta's Nick Vasicek crowned the JR Open champ
Presented by Goldstein’s
Burleigh Point Queensland
18 - 19 April 2009
Coolangatta Kid Vasicek Wins in The Nick of Time at JR Open presented by Goldstein’s
Surfersvillage Global Surf News, 19 April, 2009 : - - Gold Coast -- The door has been blown wide open in the state surfing title race, with Coolangatta kid Nick Vasicek taking the ratings lead after wrapping up the JR Open presented by Goldstein’s in near-perfect waves on the Gold Coast today.
Burleigh Point provided the ideal forum for the third round of the prestigious Queensland Championship Circuit (QCC), with hundreds of spectators lining the headland as the state’s top surfers tore up a pulsing SSE swell.
21-year-old Vasicek was unstoppable in Burleigh’s reeling 3-4ft point break waves, clocking a combined two-wave score of 16.05 out of a possible 20 to defeat fellow Gold Coast surfers Anthony Pols (Miami), Mark Richardson (Palm Beach) and Jay Quinn (Coolangatta) in the final of the $2,000 open men’s division.
After a shaky start to the 25-minute decider, the powerful goofy foot setup victory courtesy of a near-perfect ride, backhand blasting a set Burleigh Heads wave to pieces to jag a 9.8 from the judges.
He then waited to the final minutes to back it up with a heat-winning 6.25 to eventually hold off Pols, who finished in second on 15.45-points, with Richardson (14.65) and Quinn (12.25) in third and fourth respectively. Post final, Vasicek said he felt lucky to net a near-perfect ride during the final. “I was a little nervous paddling for the wave after falling off on a few waves in the early stages of the final,” he said.
“I knew I had to go big, so I just went for it. Luckily I didn’t fall off and I got a big score.” Vasicek’s 9.8 ride almost earned him four cartons of the clean crisp taste of Toohey’s Extra Dry for the ‘Wave of the Weekend’.
With several of the circuit’s big guns missing from the event due to a conflicting World Qualifying Series (WQS) tournament in South Africa, Vasicek seized the ratings lead from fellow Gold Coaster Shaun Gossmann (Snapper Rocks). There he sits on top with 1720-points, 110 clear of Damon Harvey (Coolangatta) in second, with Dave Reardon-Smith (Yaroomba) in third on 1450.
Gossmann’s no-show has seen him slip to fourth on the ratings, with the former Durbanite accumulating 1450 points in two 2009 QCC appearances.
The JR Open was an independent event in 2008. This year they accepted an invitation from Surfing Queensland to join the 2009 Queensland Championship Circuit (QCC) – and become stop three of a four round, $16,000 series that continues to set the benchmark for surfers aspiring to surfing’s big leagues.
The “Shaper’s Australia Junior Division” was also finalised today, with Queensland’s top sophomores going toe-to-toe for junior glory. Burleigh-based Rainbow Beach surfer Noah Lane claimed the numero-uno position, beating Main Beach ace Chris Bennetts, North Stradbroke’s Tim MacDonald and Coolangatta surfer Blake Ainsworth.
Surfers’ manoeuvres also went under the microscope, with Yamba’s Matt Jones taking home the ‘Best Move’ and Bennett’s the ‘Best Air’ in the day’s $750 Bondage Wax ‘Session of Expression’. Adding to the tournament’s already high stakes was the Goldstein’s ‘Lamington throw”, where JR Surfboard director, Jason Rodd, was the target.
The JR Open’s notorious after party at the Swell Tavern Burleigh Heads kicked off around 4.30 pm this afternoon, where the winners of all JR Open divisions were crowned. The JR Open presented by Goldstein’s is proudly supported by Australia’s Surfing Life Magazine, Shaper’s Australia, Bondage surf wax, Swell Tavern, Surfing Queensland and DR Moose.
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