MAJOR UPSETS ABOUND AS REGIONAL TITLE RACE INTENSIFIES, CHAMPION CROWNED SUNDAY

Saturday, August 14, 2010

LACANAU, France (Saturday, August 14, 2010) – With the ASP Grade-2 Oakley Pro Junior Lacanau running through to the Quarterfinals, it was a day of intense battle and pressure for those still in contention for both the event title and ASP European Junior crown. Suffering a significant loss and leaving an open-door to close followers, current leader Filipe Jervis (Ericeira, PRT), No. 2 Tom Cloarec (Hossegor, FRA), No. 3 Ramzi Boukiam (Agadir, MAR) and No. 4 Medi Veminardi (REU) were eliminated from the event today.

Igor Muniain (Zarautz, EUK), 20, is one of eight remaining contenders for the OPJ Lacanau title tomorrow

Benefiting the unexpected results in Round 4 of competition, now favourite Charles Martin (GLP) did not miss the opportunity to keep his excellent summer campaign going the right way, the Guadeloupe native confidently letting go his best surfing to advance through three rounds today and secure his spot into the Quarterfinals.

“I am pretty happy to make the Quarterfinals because it was a long day with three surfs,” Martin said. “I’ve been coming here forever and I’ve managed to build on my experience to wait for the better waves and not let go any good scoring potential. I was really focused today and tomorrow will be crucial.

Martin, a former ASP World Junior No. 3 (2008) and in his last year on the Under-21 professional surfing tour, will be looking to step-up and go for a second consecutive win in the Oakley Pro Junior Lacanau tomorrow, such a result which would give him the ASP European Junior title and a qualification into the ASP World Junior Tour events of Bali and Narabeen.

“Of course it’s on my mind and that first heat this morning was nerve-racking,” Martin said. “I saw the other drop one after the other but it’s not done yet and as the defending champion I am hoping for another win tomorrow. Lacanau’s been good to me for a few years now and I am feeling comfortable here.”

Despite some fair winds blowing all day, the line-up offered some good scoring potential giving today’s competitors all necessary left and righthand rides to deliver their best and get the ASP judging panel under pressure. With crucial points on the line and serious cash on offer, Sunday’s showdown will be the most intense day of action of the year.

Renowned for his solid surfing and on the way to his best result this year, giant killer Tristan Guilbaud (Vendee, FRA) left no chance to last title contender of the day Medi Veminardi (REU), the 19-year-old athlete posting the day’s highest heat score with 15.00 points in the final heat of Round 5.

“It’s good to get back into winning mode and make the Quarterfinals,” Guilbaud said. “The waves were pretty tricky and it was all about picking the right one so I focused on that and I am happy with the result.”

Guilbaud, who will face other outsider José Ferreira (PRT) in Quarterfinal No. 4 tomorrow, is still in reach of a possible Top 4 finish he keeps going in the event, but will have less pressure as the title race is other hands.

“I don’t have much to lose but I am still aiming at winning an event and it would be great if it was here,” Guilbaud said. “I am looking at doing my best and I hope the waves still allow some good surfing.”

Tomorrow will see the showdown of the 2010 ASP European Junior Men’s Tour, the crowning of the Oakley Pro Junior Lacanau Men’s champion and the kick-off of the the Oakley Girls Pro Junior. All will meet at 9.30 AM Sunday, August 15, 2010.

All news, photos, videos, results and LIVE webcast are available at www.aspeurope.com!

OAKLEY PRO JUNIOR LACANAU QUARTERFINALS
Heat 1: Pierre Valentin Laborde (FRA) Vs Igor Muniain (EUK)
Heat 2: Damien Chaudoy (FRA) Vs Edouard Delpero (FRA)
Heat 3: Charles Martin (GLP) Vs Hugo Palmarini (REU)
Heat 4: José Ferreira (PRT) Vs Tristan Guilbaud (FRA)

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