Mitch Crews : photo Jake White
Hurley Burleigh Pro Junior
ASP Grade 2 Mens Pro Junior
Burleigh Heads, Queensland Australia
22 - 28 January 2007
Live Coverage | Results/Photos/Videos etc
Hurley Burleigh Pro Junior Ready To Rock Gold Coast
Surfersvillage Global Surf News, 21 January, 2008 : - - Gold Coast -- The renowned wave haven of Burleigh Heads will get its first dose of professional surfing in 2008 with the second-annual Hurley Burleigh Pro Junior touching down onto its revered shores tomorrow.
The ASP Australasian 8-star rated tournament, running from January 22-28 and boasting $25,000 (ASD) in prize money, offers an international field of 160 surfers aged 20-years-and under the opportunity to compete at one of the world’s most legendary right-hand point breaks.
Burleigh Heads has long been synonymous with some of the greatest moments in professional surfing including the first Stubbies Classic, the surf contest generally regarded as the beginning of big-league world tour competition. It was also the first big pro event to feature man-on-man heats, the competitive format to be used at the exclusive pro junior tournament.
Now in its second year, the five-day event also marks the chance for competitors, who are coming from as far a field as Bali, France, Hawaii, Israel, Japan, New Zealand, South Africa, Tahiti and the USA, to reach their professional surfing dreams. The eventual tournament champion will earn a wildcard into the trials of the World Tour event at Trestles, California in ’08.
The tournament’s entry list is again overflowing with talent with the likes of top rated pro junior surfers including Julian Wilson (Coolum, QLD), Heath Joske (Nambucca Heads, NSW), Jayke Sharpe (Sandy Beach, NSW), Owen Wright (Culburra, NSW), Madison Williams (Coffs Harbour, NSW), Ashley King (Ulladulla), Nick Riley (Fairlight, NSW) and Stuart Kennedy (Lennox Head, NSW) confirming their entry.
Kennedy, who scored his biggest win to date at the season-opening Pro Junior in Victoria last week, will start the event as favourite and is keen to jag glory on Queensland soil. Gold Coast based pro junior surfers; Mitch Crews (Currumbin, QLD) Brendan Leckie (Palm Beach, QLD), Nick Vasicek (Coolangatta, QLD), Blake Ainsworth (Coolagatta, QLD) and Dale Richards (Coolangatta, QLD) will also don competition rash vests to compete in the event.
Crews, 17, created Australian surfing history in September, 2007 when he became the lowest seeded surfer to ever win a Pro Junior event in Australia, coming from 87th in the ASP Australasian junior series ratings to seal victory. “It was an awesome feeling to win my first pro junior,” said Crews.... It was something I never expected. To finally get a big result really lifted my hopes of a professional surfing career.”
For Crews, the coveted tournament represents the chance to impress on home turf as well as bag a crack at the ‘big time’. “It would be a dream come true to win on the Gold Coast,” he said. “All my friends and family were watching my win in Sydney via the Internet webcast, so it would be great if I could make an impact at Burleigh. It would be even better if I could snag that wildcard spot.”
International surfers will once again fight it out against their Australian foes led by Tahiti’s Tamaroa McComb, Hawaii’s Kekoa Cazimero and Bali’s Raditya Rhondi.
Bolstering to the unparalleled competition format is the Hurley 'Burleigh Battle' presented by Nike 6.0, which will be staged on Australia Day. The 'Burleigh Battle' will bring surfers from different territories together in an entertaining team-style format to determine which is the strongest in pro surfing.
Six teams of two surfers will compete over three, 30-minute heats. Teams will be from Australian states (QLD, NSW, VIC, WA, SA) along with a sole international team.
Team members will be judged on their highest scoring ride, plus a “shared” wave, where surfers from the same team have to ride a wave together. The concept was created to encourage teams to work together, and judging was set up to favour teams that have both surfers on the same wave-face, surfing in the same direction at the same time.
The action doesn’t stop there with teams slugging it out across a Ping-Pong tournament as well as a Pie Eating contest in the multidisciplinary battle. The team with the highest amount of points at the end of the battle will walk away with a pair of limited edition Nike 6.0 shoes plus $1000. Too easy!
The Hurley Burleigh Pro Junior is the 3rd of 12 stops on the 2008 ASP Australasian Pro Junior Series and offers a seven-day surfing window, from Tuesday 22nd January to Monday 28th January, 2008, for only five days of competition surfing. The main event site will be at Burleigh Heads, however the tournament has the option of going to the best surf from Southport Spit to Duranbah.
The Hurley Burleigh Pro Junior is proudly supported by Nike 6.0, Electric, Redbull, Brothers Neilsen, Australian Surfing life, Surfing Queensland and ASP Australasia.
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