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Lee-Ann Curren Wins the Kustom Jetty Surf Pro Junior
JAN JUC BEACH, Australia (Saturday, January 12, 2008) -
The eighteen year old daughter of former 3 time world surfing champion Tom Curren (USA) defeated a classy field of Australia’s very best Pro Junior surfers with the highlight being her big scoring semi final victory over the recently crowned ASP World Junior Champion Sally Fitzgibbons (Geroa/Sth Coast NSW).
Fitzgibbons was a red hot favourite to win today’s event but found herself under pressure throughout the semi final after Curren scored an excellent 8.5 (out of a possible 10) opening ride. Curren then backed that ride up with a strong 5.25 ride in the onshore 1m waves leaving Fitzgibbons chasing a 7.5 to try and take the win – Fitzgibbons caught two good 6 point rides in her chase but was unable to overtake Curren.
The final was one sided with Curren again finding an excellent 8 point ride and posting a final two wave tally of 13 points to easily defeat Angela Keighran (Coff’s Harbor/NSW) on 6.75.
“ It’s my biggest win so far – I didn’t expect to win the semi final against Fitzgibbons and really just went out in that semi with no pressure on myself and tried to simply surf well and have fun – I think that helped my chances because I was enjoying the surf, found the best wave that came through and won the semi!” – “There was more pressure on me in the final because I figured I should win after beating Sally in the semi – fortunately that’s how it worked.”
Angela Keighran’s second place today was the best result of her career and begins her 2008 ASP Australasia Pro Junior season on the perfect note.
“I’m aiming to make semi finals at all events this season on the Pro Junior circuit so today has been great. Lee Ann’s a really smooth and stylish surfer and I knew she’d be hard to beat in the final but I was still confident – unfortunately I didn’t really find any decent scoring rides in that final and was never really in a position to win, but I’m happy with today’s result and as the top placed Australian I’m in a good position after the first event – my aim is to make the top 2 on the season ratings and qualify for the ASP World Junior Titles by the end of the year.”
Keighran performed much better in her quarter and semi finals today, defeating Queensland Sunshine Coast surfer Lori Kelly (Caloundra) in her semi final.
Apart from Sally Fitzgibbon’s loss in her semi final, a number of other highly rated girls were early eliminations. Laura Enever (Nth Narrabeen) was bundled out of the event in her quarter final along with highly seeded surfers Kirby Wright and Kirstie Jones (Both Sth Coast NSW).
All the girls, including Lee Ann Curren, remain in Victoria for the coming two weeks for ASP events at Gunnamatta (Ozmosis/Nova Pro Junior) and Phillip Island (Roxy Women’s Surfing Festival).
The Pro Junior Men’s division of the Kustom Jetty Surf Pro Junior did not surf today – Twenty –four surfers remain in the event and organizers are optimistic of a swell increase in the coming two days which will complete this division in excellent waves – hopefully at Bells Beach.