Hawaii's Kai Barger in great form winning his opening round heat at the Oakley Pro Junior Global Challenge


The 2009 Oakley Pro Junior Global Challenge final began today in near flawless 1.25m (3 to 4 feet) surf at the now famous Keramas River – mouth Bali.

Bringing together 18 of the world’s very best Pro Junior surfers (20 years of age and under) who have qualified for this event by winning or placing second in the six regional Oakley Pro Juniors from all over the world earlier this year, all these surfers are chasing a winner’s prize purse of $US20 000 along with the prestige of winning this unique quality event.

Hawaii’s Kai Barger won his heat today with a powerhouse display of bottom to vertical top turn surfing seemed to present the view of all surfers at the event after his heat by saying,” It’s such a great location for an event like this and I want to really win this as it’s my last Pro Junior event .”

“We just know we’ll get great waves here; we’re at an ideal performance driven wave with a good waiting period and over the coming ten days there’s a great outlook for swell so everyone’s pumped and looking forward to an incredible time.”

Today, just three heats of round one were run highlighting the approach of event directors Andrew Stark (Surfing Australia) and Tipi Jabrik (Indonesian Surfing Championship Circuit) to quality control this event.

“It was good to let the surfers get a feel for the waves today” commented Jabrik.

“With a really favourable swell outlook ahead we were sort of expecting not to run today and wait for the bigger waves that are coming but it was so clean and perfect offshore this morning we had to run, as soon as the winds came up after three heats we stopped so it was a good start for all the guys to familiarize themselves with the break.”

No surfers are eliminated in round these three man round one heats which sees first and second placed surfers progress to round three while 3rd placed surfers go to round two.

New Zealand’s Billy Stairmand was the top scoring surfer of the morning with an outstanding 9.17 out of 10 and a heat tally of 16.34 on his top two rides to easily win through defeating Granger Larson (Hawaii) who also moved through to round three while Brazil’s Dillon Perillo placed third in this heat and goes into round two.
The other heat winner joining Kai Barger and Billy Stairmand was South Africa’s Shaun Joubert who defeated Australia’s Sam Wrench and Charley Martin (FRA).
Surfers will convene each morning at 7am at Keramas with the likelihood that organizers will run as this new approaching swell hits in the coming days and really try and quality control a great event around ideal tides and winds.

Keramas is renowned as possibly the world’s most ideal performance wave, combining excellent barrels, performance driven sections along with aerial opportunities across this unique river-mouth and reef combination break.

Today’s results:

Round one:
Heat 1: Shaun Joubert (ZAF) 15 .27, Sam Wrench (AUS) 12.83, Charly Martin (FRA) 4.17
Heat 2: Billy Stairmand (NZ) 16.34, Granger Larson (HAW) 11.67, Dillon Perillio (BRA) 6.66
Heat 3: Kai Barger (HAW) 12.24, Arashi Kato (JPN) 10.03, Noa Deane (AUS) 7.17

When round one resumes the following heats will be surfed
Heat 4: Marc Lacomare (FRA), Brendon Gibbons (ZAF), Mustofa Jeksen (IND)
Heat 5: Alejo Muniz (BRA), Davey Cathels (AUS), Dewa Made Ardika (IND)
Heat 6: Nat Young (USA), Clay Marzo (HAW), Jesse Mendes (BRA)