25 February, 2015 25 February, 2015

It’s Showtime! 2015 Dream Tour Set For Start

Snapper Rocks on Australia’s Gold Coast is primed for the start of the 2015 World Surf League Championship Tour season, with the Quiksilver and Roxy Pro Gold Coast set to commence this Saturday, 28 February.

Gabriel Medina will be defending his title at the Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast.

The waiting period for both events runs until 11 March, so whether we’ll see some action right away or if we’ll wait it out for some better surf will be determined by Mother Nature, who, like always, influences the final decision.

According to the forecast, modest surf is expected for the opening day before easing through the weekend. That’s a pity, because anticipation has been huge after a solid week of swell at the Superbank compliments of cyclone Marcia. But with nothing major showing up on long range charts just yet, there’s a chance we’ll see some action while there’s still some chest high surf on Day 1.

Reigning Roxy Pro champ, Stephanie Gilmore will be looking for a repeat.

So who is going to win it, you ask? Well it’s hard to bet against current world champs, Gabriel Medina and Stephanie Gilmore, who are also the reigning champs at this event. It’s a known fact that 50% of the winners of the season opener over the past decade have gone on to claim that year’s title, so they’ll be looking for a strong start to their campaigns again.

Gabriel was a surprise champ at last year’s event, however, considering no goofyfoot had won at Snapper since Mick Lowe back in 2004. There’s also only been one winner not named Mick, Joel, Kelly or Taj since then, so there you have your other favourites. You can also add John John Florence to that list after he finished last season with such aplomb.

Kelly has four Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast titles to his name.

From a South African perspective, we only have two representatives on this year’s Dream Tour after Travis Logie retired from competition at the end of last season. Jordy Smith made the finals in 2010 and is always considered a threat at Snapper Rocks. Bianca Buitendag finished runner-up at last year’s Roxy Pro Gold Coast, which followed a quarter final showing the year before in her rookie season. If she continues that upward trend there’s only one possible outcome, so we’ll be watching closely.

There’s also a chance that Slade Prestwich could grab a spot in the event. The KZN local will contest the Wildcard Trials and victory will see him matched-up with the big guns in Round 1. The other wildcard has been handed to perennial favourite, Dane Reynolds.

The Quiksilver and Roxy Pro Gold Coast will be broadcast LIVE and you can tune in to worldsurfleague.com to catch the action.


Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast Round 1 Match-Ups:
Heat 1: Joel Parkinson (AUS), Miguel Pupo (BRA), Brett Simpson (USA)
Heat 2: Michel Bourez (PYF), Sebastian Zietz (HAW), Ricardo Christie (NZL)
Heat 3: Kelly Slater (USA), Fredrick Patacchia (HAW), C.J. Hobgood (USA)
Heat 4: John John Florence (HAW), Jadson Andre (BRA), Glenn Hall (IRL)
Heat 5: Mick Fanning (AUS), Matt Banting (AUS), TBD
Heat 6: Gabriel Medina (BRA), Wiggolly Dantas (BRA), TBD
Heat 7: Jordy Smith (ZAF), Kai Otton (AUS), Jeremy Flores (FRA)
Heat 8: Adriano de Souza (BRA), Filipe Toledo (BRA), Dusty Payne (HAW)
Heat 9: Taj Burrow (AUS), Bede Durbidge (AUS), Keanu Asing (HAW)
Heat 10: Josh Kerr (AUS), Adrian Buchan (AUS), Matt Wilkinson (AUS)
Heat 11: Kolohe Andino (USA), Julian Wilson (AUS), Italo Ferreira (BRA)
Heat 12: Owen Wright (AUS), Nat Young (USA), Adam Melling (AUS)

Roxy Pro Gold Coast Round 1 Match-Ups:
Heat 1: Malia Manuel (HAW), Johanne Defay (FRA), Sage Erickson (USA)
Heat 2: Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS), Courtney Conlogue (USA), Nikki Van Dijk (AUS)
Heat 3: Stephanie Gilmore (AUS), Silvana Lima (BRA), Trials Winner (TBD)
Heat 4: Tyler Wright (AUS), Dimity Stoyle (AUS), Alessa Quizon (HAW)
Heat 5: Carissa Moore (HAW), Laura Enever (AUS), Tatiana Weston-Webb (HAW)
Heat 6: Lakey Peterson (USA), Bianca Buitendag (ZAF), Coco Ho (HAW)

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