LOCALS DOMINATE DAY ONE OF O’NEILL COLDWATER CLASSIC

posted by / News / October 18, 2006

As the final event of both the ASP North America season and the Macy’s California Trifecta Surf Series, the opening day O’Neill Cold Water Classic saw local surfers dominate the competition at the infamous righthander.


Noi Kaulukukui (Santa Cruz, Calif.) opened up his O’Neill Cold Water Classic campaign in fine form this morning locking in the day’s high heat total of a 16.00 out of a possible 20. Kaulukukui decimated the long walls on his forehand surfing with a speed and flare that went unrivaled by his opponents

“It was looking a little iffy with the tide coming in and I actually read the tide book this morning and thought it was going to be way high tide for my heat,” Kaulukukui said. “However, it turned out to be medium tide and the waves just started popping up.”

As the day progressed, the locals would continue to dominate the competition with eight surfers from Santa Cruz advancing out of round one today.

Peter Garaway (Santa Cruz, Calif.), winner of this morning’s trials, tore the bag out of a long roping righthander this afternoon to secure the day’s highest single-wave score of an 8.67 out of a possible 10.

“The momentum (from this morning’s trials heats) definitely helped as I haven’t done a contest for the past three years,” Garaway said. “My nerves were kicking in at the start because I just decided to do the event last night and I got into the locals trials round as an alternate. I got through those first two heats and I’m feeling more confident with each round.”

The high-flying action of this morning’s trials rounds was punctuated by the devastating injury sustained by Austin Smith-{{{Ford}}} (Santa Cruz, Calif.).

Smith-Ford, pushing his limits in an attempt to qualify for the main event, fell too close to the rocks and received a four-inch gash to his backside.

“The force of the wave pushed him into the cliff – there was really nowhere to go,” Garaway, fellow competitor, said. “We could see the blood as we started paddling in.”

The young natural-footer was helped in by his fellow competitors where he was treated by event staff before being taken to the local hospital.


The Oakley Pro Junior (an ASP grade-two event), running in conjunction with the O’Neill Cold Water Classic, will commence on Friday, October 20th, 2006, featuring some of the best junior competitors (aged 20 and under) in world vying for their last opportunity at qualifying for the prestigious ASP World Junior Championships.

The top-four finishers on the ASP North America Pro Junior series, along with Alex Gray (Palos Verdes, Calif.) will be sent to the ASP World Junior Championships held in Narrabeen, New South Wales, Australia. Gray has already secured his entry by being the highest-ranked North America surfer of the WQS who is of junior age – Gray is currently ranked 43rd.

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