SAN CLEMENTE, California (Friday, April 18, 2008) — The Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) World Qualifying Series (WQS) 4-Star 6.0 Lowers Pro and Grade-2 Oakley Pro Junior will bring 192 of the world’s best professional surfers and 32 of the world’s best professional juniors to Lower Trestles, April 29 to May 3, 2008. The event will unite top seeds, local and international talent, wild cards and even one female vying for an increased prize purse of $80,000 for the WQS and $10,000 for the juniors, as well as, valuable ASP points and the possibility of a Macy’s California Trifecta Surf Series bonus.
6.0 Lowers Pro Athletes
ASP World Championship Tour (WCT) vets Taylor Knox (Carlsbad, CA), who won the event in ’94, and local favorite Chris Ward (San Clemente, CA) will come in as top seeds this year. They’ll be joined by fellow WCT surfers Adriano de Souza (BRA), Ben Bourgeois (Wrightsville Beach, NC) and Fredrick Patacchia (HAW), currently off of the Tour due to injury,
2006 Surfbout champion Dustin Cuizon (HAW), as well as, current WQS points leader Patrick Gudauskas (San Clemente, CA), Cory Lopez (Dana Point, CA), Shea Lopez (Daytona, FL), Brett Simpson (Huntington Beach, CA), Joel Centeio (HAW), and 2005 Macy’s California Trifecta Champion Asher Nolan (Neptune Beach, FL) are also top seeds.
Other local favorites and top contenders include 2006 Macy’s California Trifecta Champion Nate Yeomans (San Clemente, CA), 2007 Macy’s California Trifecta Champion Adam Virs (Ventura, CA), Mike Losness (San Clemente, CA) and 2007 fourth-place finisher Shaun Ward (Huntington Beach, CA), who was the only non-WCT surfer to make it to the final last year.
Nike 6.0 has extended wild cards to three young guns who are sure to represent the up-and-comers in a major way. The event’s only female, Carissa Moore (HAW), and Evan Geiselman (New Smyrna Beach, FL) will be seeded into the Round of 64, and Koa Smith (HAW) will debut in the Round of 96.
“I feel extremely honored and thankful that Nike gave me an opportunity to surf one of my favorite waves in the world,” said Carissa Moore. “I am going to try to do my best to surf at a level deserving of my wild card spot.”
Other up-and-comers to watch for include Oakley Pro Junior graduates Nick Rosza (Oxnard, CA), who claimed the 2007 Oakley Pro Junior Trifecta championship, Brent Dorrington (AUS), who won the Trestles Oakley Pro Junior in 2007 as a wild card entry, and Mitchell Coleburn (AUS), who established himself as a premier talent in 2007’s event by advancing to the semi-finals in both the WQS and Pro Junior events.
Oakley Pro Junior Athletes
With an increased Trifecta bonus and qualification spots into the Oakley Pro Junior Global Challenge added perks, the 2008 Oakley Pro Junior field is impressive. As the only competitor who made it to last year’s final who hasn’t aged out of the division, last year’s third-place finisher Cory Arrambide (Ventura, CA) returns as the number two seed. 2007 Macy’s California Trifecta Oakley Pro Junior runner-up Adam Wickwire (Satellite Beach, FL) will enter the event as the top seed.
Rounding out the top five junior seeds are three East Coast talents: Travis Beckman (Vero Beach, FL), Cody Thompson (Jacksonville Beach, FL) and Blake Jones (Melbourne Beach, FL).
Oakley wild card spots have gone to Shaun Jobert (ZAF), who won the Durban Oakley Pro Junior last month, and Sebastian Zietz (HAW).
Others to watch for include 2007 Santa Cruz Oakley Pro Junior champion Nat Young (Santa Cruz, CA) and super-local-grom Riley Metcalf (San Clemente, CA), who is each also in the round of 192 in the WQS event.
Formerly known as the Body Glove Surfbout, the 6.0 Lowers Pro will continue to serve as one of the most touted events on the ASP WQS schedule due to its premiere location and history of groundbreaking competitive surfing match ups. In 2009 and 2010, the event will upgrade to a 6-Star, making it one of only two North American 6-Stars, helping to elevate the relevance of the ASP North American leg of the WQS and ensuring that the legacy of competitive surfing at Lowers continues to grow.
The Macy’s California Trifecta Surf Series (an ASP North America Specialty Series) was formed in 2005 to strengthen surfing in America and has added additional cash and prize incentives each year. For 2008, the series unites the 6.0 Lowers Pro, the Oakley Newport Pro (Sept. 16-21), and the O’Neill Cold Water Classic (Oct. 21-26) under one banner, as well as, an Oakley Pro Junior at each of the three stops.
The Trifecta Series provides surfers with an opportunity to earn crucial points towards the ASP WQS and Pro Junior end-of-year rankings, which factors into advancement to the coveted ASP World Tour and ASP World Junior Championships. Additionally, the series will award a $33,333 bonus to the surfer who takes first place in all three WQS events. Should one surfer not win all three events, the overall points-winner will receive a $10,000 bonus and second and third will receive $3,500 and $1,500, respectively. Juniors will vie for an additional $10,000 bonus.
All 6.0 Lowers Pro action will be viewable online with streaming video and live scoring at www.nike6lowerspro.com.
In addition to title sponsor Nike 6.0, the 6.0 Lowers Pro is happy to have support from Red Bull, Oakley, SURFER, SURFING, WaveWatch and FUEL TV.