HUNTINGTON BEACH, Calif. (Sunday, July 30, 2006) – Former two-time event champion and last year’s runner-up Rob Machado (Cardiff, CA) re-asserted his U.S. Open of Surfing supremacy today winning his third title in front of thousands at Huntington Beach.
“I will never get tired of coming here,” Machado said. “The crowd down here has been so amazing all week. The energy that was out there in the final was unbelievable. I lost a close final to Andy Irons here last year and that was hard to swallow, so this feels fantastic.”
Muscling out Roy Powers (Hanalei, HI) in the six-star ASP World Qualifying Series (WQS) event, the Honda U.S. Open of Surfing presented by O’Neill, former world No. 2 Machado now finds himself in the WQS top-50 despite having only surfed a handful of events in 2006.
“I’ve only surfed three contests this year but I’m heading to Europe to compete in a couple of events there which should be fun because I haven’t surfed there in years,” Machado, who is semi-retired from competitive surfing, said. “I guess I’ll just see where I’m sitting on the ratings (WQS) after that and take it from there.”
Incidentally, Machado has won two of the three events he’s surfed in 2006 – today’s proceedings, as well as a four-star competition at Pipeline (Hawaii) – and now appears quite capable of qualifying for the Foster’s ASP Men’s World Tour should he be so inclined.
Powers, current no. 41 on the Foster’s ASP Men’s World Tour, needed just an average wave score of a 6.33 to change today’s outcome.
“Rob is a machine and can get the scores on any wave he goes on,” Powers said. “I could have applied a bit more pressure, but I wanted to win honorably and I came really close – all I needed was one more score.”