NEWPORT BEACH, California (Thursday, September 18, 2008) - Day 3 of the Oakley Newport Beach Pro and Oakley Pro Junior ran in excellent two-to-four foot (1 metre) conditions at 56th street in Newport Beach, California.
Today’s action saw two-time event champion Nathan Yeomans (San Clemente, CA), 27, move one step closer to his third Oakley Newport Beach Pro win, while Micah Byrne (Huntington Beach, CA), 26, posted the event’s highest single wave score and Brett Barley (Cape Hatteras, NC), 18, issued a big upset, defeating Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) World Qualifying Series (WQS) No. 4 Patrick Gudauskas (San Clemente, CA), 22.
The Oakley Newport Beach Pro, an ASP WQS 2-Star event, and the Oakley Pro Junior, an ASP Grade-2, represent the second stop on the Macy’s California Trifecta Surf Series. The miniseries contains three events for both ASP WQS and ASP North America Pro Junior competitors and offers an additional prize purse to the series winner at year’s end. Last year’s Macy’s California Trifecta Surf Series Champion Adam Virs (Ventura, CA), 29, was defeated today by Jesse Merle-Jones (North Shore, HI), 29, eliminating the reigning champ’s chances for a repeat victory.
Yeomans was a form surfer in the event today, taking advantage of the roping lefts breaking off of the 56th street jetty. The goofy-footer advanced into Round 5 with his heat win today.
“It’s amazing how there’s always waves for this contest,” Yeomans said. “The last few years have been pumping. A couple of years ago it was like perfect 56th street.”
Yeomans, a two-time Oakley Newport Beach Pro Champion, is one step closer to claiming his third Oakley Newport Beach Pro title. The San Clemente native is fresh off of the European leg of the ASP WQS and is out to claim event title number three.
“That’s definitely the goal,” Yeomans said. “I’m just taking it one heat at a time and I’m just having fun. There’s no pressure or stress and I’m just enjoying it. There are waves and it’s going to be a good contest. It’s nice to be home because I’ve been gone all summer. This is my little break before the end of the year and I always look forward to it.”
Byrne posted the event’s highest single wave score of a near perfect 9.93 out of a possible 10 with a massive backside blast on a lefthander this afternoon. Byrne was in the lead before earning the big score and the vertical backside maneuver sealed the deal on his heat win.
“I’m super stoked,” Byrne said. “We didn’t have any sets in that heat and finally one came in at the end. I was already comfortable sitting in first place and I figured I’d throw it up there and try and replace one of my six point scores.”
Byrne earned his heat victory over top competitors Shaun Ward (Huntington Beach, CA), 26, Kyle Knox (Imperial Beach, CA), 26 and Blake Jones (Melbourne Beach, FL), 20, who advanced in second.
“That was a pretty gnarly heat for the Round of 64,” Byrne said. “I couldn’t believe the names that were in it. Shaun Ward waxed me in the Round of 64 in Huntington and maybe it was a little payback.”
Barley defeated Gudauskas and topped former ASP World Tour standout Tim Curran (Oxnard, CA), 31, who advanced behind Barley in second, with an 8.93 out of a possible 10 point score in the last few minutes of the heat to claim the win.
“I knew that 10 minutes was enough time, but I was still kind of stressed,” Barley said. “As soon as I won my heat yesterday and I got put in that heat draw for today I just thought that it was cool. At first I thought it was kind of gnarly but then I knew if there were some barrels and I could get some waves I could kind of compete. I was just lucky to get that one. They didn’t make it easy. To beat those guys was intense.”
Barley drove through the barrel and had a huge frontside blast on an oncoming section to solidify a heat victory over the top seeds.
“I kind of knew because I had seen that section in the previous heats throw and two heats before mine it spit,” Barley said. “I knew if a wave came in down there that it would probably barrel. That one had a little chandelier at the beginning and then it just opened up. That section that I hit was barreling at me and I knew I’d either buckle my board or make it.”
Dillon Perillo (Malibu, CA), 18, continued to standout in both the Oakley Newport Beach Pro and the Oakley Pro Junior today. With significantly different conditions on offer in the afternoon, Perillo proved he could perform in a variety of conditions. The Malibu local posted the highest heat total in today’s ASP Grade-2 pro junior event of 15.17 out of a possible 20 point score.
“This morning was opposite from this afternoon,” Perillo said. “It was glassy and there was some water on the sand. There were corners, lefts and rights, but now it’s super onshore, low tide and closed out. It’s all lefts and no rights. It’s kind of sticky and weird, but it’s still surfable.”
Perillo managed to post some high scores while fighting the strong rip current running through the lineup.
“When it is like this I just try to stay deeper off of the jetty and try to get the weird side ones that bend crooked down the beach,” Perillo said. “Those are the best ones and I try to get those ones in those heats.”
Although Perillo has been a standout in both divisions, the regular-footer has been earning better results in the ASP WQS than in the ASP Pro Junior.
“I almost think Junior’s is harder,” Perillo said. “Last contest I lost in my second heat in the junior’s and I made the Final in the ‘QS. It seems like I’m having an easier time surfing the ‘QS for some reason.”
The Oakley Newport Beach Pro will continue with Round 5 tomorrow at 8am local time and will be followed by Round 3 of the Oakley Pro Junior. The Oakley Pro Junior Quarterfinals and Semifinals will run as well.
For all of the LIVE action log on to www.newportbeachpro.com
Round of 64 (1st and 2nd advance)
Heat 1: Dillon Perillo (USA) 16.23, Jason Harris (USA) 16.00, Chaz Chidester (HAW) 3.93, Shey Yates (USA) 1.93
Heat 2: Marcelo Trekinho (BRA) 11.93, Darrell Goodrum (USA) 10.93, Kai Barger (HAW) 10.74, Quinn McCrystal (HAW) 7.10
Heat 3: Jesse Merle-Jones (HAW) 12.93, Jason Miller (USA) 10.50, Adam Virs (USA) 10.23, Matt Meola (HAW) 8.96
Heat 4: Dane Johnson (USA) 12.74, Dane Gudauskas (USA) 11.17, Tommy O’Brien (USA) 9.53, Dylan Goodale (USA) 8.30
Heat 5: Travis Mellem (USA) 15.00, Danny Estes (USA) 14.03, Chris Abad (USA) 11.33, Anthony Petruso (USA) 6.70
Heat 6: Richie Collins (USA) 12.94, Matt Mohagen (USA) 10.00, Macy Mullen (USA) 8.86, Brent Dorrington (AUS) 4.86
Heat 7: Brandon Guilmette (USA) 11.07, Brent Reilly (USA) 10.06, Sean Moody (USA) 9.57, Shane Beschen (USA) 6.50
Heat 8: Brett Barley (USA) 15.50, Tim Curran (USA) 13.33, Patrick Gudauskas (USA) 12.53, Eric McHenry (USA) 8.00
Heat 9: Nathan Yeomans (USA) 15.33, Dane Zaun (USA) 14.67, Andrew Gesler (USA) 8.06, Sebastian Zietz (HAW) 6.10
Heat 10: Nat Young (USA) 12.30, Kieran Horn (USA) 12.26, Matt King (USA) 12.13, Dylan Melamed (USA) 6.80
Heat 11: Micah Byrne (USA) 16.33, Blake Jones (USA) 11.33, Shaun Ward (USA) 9.94, Kyle Knox (USA) 3.94
Heat 12: Brad Ettinger (USA) 11.17, Leif Engstrom (USA) 10.00, Shey Perkins (USA) 6.26, Nick Rupp (USA) 6.10
Heat 13: Brandon Ragenovich (USA) 16.80, Evan Valiere (HAW) 14.17, Conner Coffin (USA) 8.10, Tanner Gudauskas (USA) 6.73
Heat 14: Dane Ward (USA) 10.74, Justin McBride (USA) 10.37, Blake Howard (USA) 9.60, Bud Freitas (USA) 5.90
Heat 15: Asher Nolan (USA) 17.33, Shaun Burrell (USA) 12.40, Andrew Doheny (USA) 9.40, Phillip Goold (USA) 8.33
Heat 16: Ted Navarro (USA) 7.60, Ryan Briggs (USA) 10.30, Evan Geiselman (USA) 8.60, Joel Centeio (HAW) 7.60
Round of 48: (1st and 2nd advance)
Heat 1: Tanner Gudauskas (USA) 13.26, Fisher Heverly (USA) 13.16, Ian Crane (USA) 6.97, Colin Schildhauer (USA) 4.10
Heat 2: Daniel Shea (USA) 12.66, Kyle Kennelly (USA) 12.30, Ford Archbold (USA) 11.53, Luke Davis (USA) 10.43
Heat 3: Dillon Perillo (USA) 15.17, Victor Done (USA) 10.70, Logan Strook (USA) 9.94, Riley Metcalf (USA) 6.66
Heat 4: Albee Layer (HAW) 11.10, Quinn McCrystal (USA) 10.76, David Suhadolnik (USA) 9.50, Kekoa Cazimero (HAW) 5.30
Heat 5: Oliver Kurtz (USA) 10.93, Jeffrey Lukasik (USA) 10.60, Nate Zoller (USA) 8.80, Bruno Rodrigues (USA) 6.63
Heat 6: Hunter Heverly (USA) 11.03, Spencer Regan (USA) 9.35, Tayler Brothers (USA) 8.80, Jensen Callaway (USA) 7.20
Heat 7: Michael Dunphy (USA) 13.00, Leif Engstrom (USA) 11.57, Gabe Garcia (USA) 6.73, Adam Lambert (USA) 6.17
Heat 8: Brett Barley (USA) 15.00, Taylor Thorne (USA) 8.40, Nick Rupp (USA) 6.56, Tyler Stanaland (USA) 5.50