Dean Bowen (AUS) won a nail biting final against Kiron Jabour (HAW) in the
Quiksilver King of the Groms in Capbreton, France today. Bowen’s victory
earned him a prestigious place in the upcoming Quiksilver Pro France in
September, and in the Quiksilver Pro Australia in March 2007.
Bowen, 15, of Gerringong, New South Wales, Australia was ecstatic as he was
carried up the beach by his mates, crowned on spectacular hand-carved wooden
crown, and showered by non-alcoholic champagne. “It’s such a great event,”
he said. “I really felt I surfed my best all week.”
Bowen was equally thrilled to now have a chance to surf against his heroes
for two events on the ASP WCT World Tour. “I can’t wait to get into a ‘CT
and try and take some guys out,” he said.
Due to the dropping swell, the contest was moved to the open beach break of
La Piste. Conditions for the final day were 2-3 feet (.5-1 meter) and not
as well shaped as previous days. The waves did, however, improve with the
incoming tide throughout the day.
Jabour, 15, of Haleiwa, Hawaii, held the lead for most of the heat, but saw
Bowen get the score he needed, a 5.60 (out of 10) with 2min28s remaining, to
pull into first position. Jabour got a wave right at the final horn, but it
did not offer him much scoring potential.
“I feel pretty bad that I lost,” said Jabour. “I got that wave at the end,
but it just wasn’t good enough.”
Jabour’s 2nd place finish earned him a free custom surfboard from the shaper
of his choice.
Finishing in equal third were Jon-Jon Florence (HAW) and Shaun Joubert
Florence, 13, of Sunset Beach, Hawaii, was looking like a favourite to win
the event as his small, light frame and lightning quick surfing were well
suited to the conditions. Bowen, however, posted two massive scores in his
semi-final against Florence with solid backside surfing early in the heat,
and ran away with the victory.
“I just didn’t get the right waves,” said Florence. “It was a super fun
contest, though, and I hope to be back next year.”