Nat Young (Santa Cruz, CA), 17, won the Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) North America Pro Junior Series Grade-3 Arnette All Day Antics Pro Junior presented by Jack's Surfboards in two-to-three foot (1 metre) surf at 56th street in Newport Beach, California topping fellow finalists Keanu Asing (Ewa Beach, HI), 16, Cory Arrambide (Ventura, CA), 19, and Cody Thompson (Jacksonville, FL), 19.
All surfers competing on the ASP North America Pro Junior Series are battling for their spot at the ASP World Junior Championships held in Narrabeen, Australia each January. ASP North America will send the series' top three finishers at year's end to the coveted event, where each surfer earns the chance to claim the prestigious title of ASP World Junior Champion.
Young's dominating performance in the Arnette All Day Antics explained why he is a threat in every ASP North America Pro Junior Series event. The humble goofy-footer annihilated his competition today and jumped out to an early lead in the Final, posting two average scores before smashing an 8.25 out of 10 on his last wave to solidify the win.
"The Final was kind of weird," Young said. "There weren't many good waves, so I just tried to stay busy and keep improving my scores and luckily on that last wave I got two good turns in and got a solid score."
The Santa Cruz native's lightning-quick forehand approach and impeccable wave selection on the racy lefthanders at 56th street played a critical role in his impressive showing.
"I think it definitely helps to be on your forehand out here on these lefts," Young said. "It's pretty fast, but in the end you've really just got to get the best waves out there. It's whoever gets the best waves."
The Arnette All Day Antics Pro Junior victory by Young will play a critical role in his quest toward requalification for next year's ASP World Junior Championships and will launch him towards the top of the 2009 ASP North America Pro Junior Series ratings.
"I'm stoked to win the Grade-3," Young said. "This is my first win of the year and it's especially good because of the extra points, so it's important for this year."
Asing quietly marched his way through to a second place finish, smashing the 56th street lefthanders on his backhand throughout the event in route to his standout performance. The explosive Hawaiian got off to a slow start in the Final, but worked his way back up the ladder to finish behind Young.
"I'm just really happy to make the Final," Asing said. "It's great to come over here and get some points. Congratulations to Nat (Young) and all of the other finalists, everyone was surfing well."
Asing is hoping his second place finish will help his chances in representing Hawaii at the Billabong ASP World Junior Championships next year.
"It's really cool to be able to earn points towards qualification for worlds," Asing said. "I had fun here and I hope this helps my cause."
Arrambide, who was the defending Arnette Pro Junior Series Champion, was off to a rough start to his 2009 season, but the defending ASP North America Pro Junior Series Champion was back to his usual domineering form en route to his third place result. The Ventura local smashed a seven-point-ride early on in the Final, but could not find another solid score to take out the win.
"I was definitely nervous coming in to this contest," Arrambide said. "My first two contests were kind of shockers, but since then, I've been training harder than ever and I'm stoked to get on a role. I haven't really had a good heat yet, I've just kind of been skimming through."
Thompson's Final berth was a notable result for the ASP North America Pro Junior standout, marking his first appearance amongst the final four surfers in three years. The talented Floridian's fourth place finish at the Arnette Pro Junior helped him break out of his early season slump and Thompson was happy to capitalize on the additional ASP Grade-3 points on offer.
"This is the first Pro Junior Final I've made since I was 16," Thompson said. "I've been in a slump, so I'm stoked to have made it here. I've had a really bad year. This is the first event that I've made it out of my seeded round, so to make it to the Final in this one, a Grade-3, it's really important to me."
The next ASP North America Pro Junior Series event will be the ASP Grade-4 Nike 6.0 Pier Pressure presented by Jack's from June 28-29, 2009.
For all of the Arnette All Day Antics Pro Junior Series highlights log on to www.arnetteprojunior.com
For additional ASP information log on to www.aspworldtour.com or www.aspnorthamerica.org
Arnette All Day Antics Pro Junior Final Results:
1- Nat Young (USA) 14.25
2- Keanu Asing (HAW) 13.05
3- Cory Arrambide (USA) 10.60
4- Cody Thompson (USA) 8.50
Arnette All Day Antics Pro Junior Semifinals Results: (1st and 2nd advance)
Heat 1: Keanu Asing (HAW) 13.75, Cory Arrambide (USA) 9.90, Luke Davis (USA) 9.45, Chase Wilson (USA) 7.25
Heat 2: Nat Young (USA) 15.50, Cody Thompson (USA) 13.00, Andrew Doheny (USA)11.80, Fisher Heverly (USA) 8.00
Arnette All Day Antics Pro Junior Quarterfinals Results: (1st and 2nd advance)
Heat 1: Keanu Asing (HAW) 15.15, Luke Davis (USA) 13.35, Jeffrey Lukasik (USA) 11.35, Ian Crane (USA) 7.40
Heat 2: Chase Wilson (USA) 11.50, Cory Arrambide (USA) 9.25, Evan Geiselman (USA) 7.95, Matt Meola (HAW) 7.35
Heat 3: Nat Young (USA) 15.15, Cody Thompson (USA) 11.75, Mike McCabe (USA) 11.55, Granger Larsen (HAW) 10.35
Heat 4: Fisher Heverly (USA) 9.90, Andrew Doheny (USA) 8.50, Quinn McCrystal (USA) 8.35, Tayler Brothers (USA) 6.15
Arnette All Day Antics Pro Junior Round of 32 Results: (1st and 2nd advance)
Heat 1: Jeffrey Lukasik (USA) 11.25, Ian Crane (USA) 9.00, Brent Reilly (USA) 8.45, Evan Thompson (USA) 7.50
Heat 2: Keanu Asing (HAW) 17.00, Luke Davis (USA) 11.60, Oliver Kurtz (USA) 7.60, Adam Lambert (USA) 6.95
Heat 3: Evan Geiselman (USA) 16.00, Matt Meola (HAW) 11.75, Ford Archbold (USA) 11.50, Albee Layer (HAW) 10.50
Heat 4: Chase Wilson (USA) 15.00, Cory Arrambide (USA) 10.00, Evan Kane (HAW) 5.95, Balaram Stack (USA) 2.95
Heat 5: Nat Young (USA) 10.10, Mike McCabe (USA) 8.50, Dylan Goodale (HAW) 7.75, Matt Pagan (USA) 7.00
Heat 6: Granger Larsen (USA) 13.75, Cody Thompson (USA) 13.40, Michael Dunphy (USA) 10.35, Kolohe Andino (USA) 7.95
Heat 7: Quinn McCrystal (USA) 10.90, Andrew Doheny (USA) 10.35, Kyle Galtes (HAW) 9.25, Matt Costa (USA) 8.80
Heat 8: Fisher Heverly (USA) 10.35, Tayler Brothers (USA) 9.75, Taylor Thorne (USA) 5.60, Levi Gonzales (HAW) 4.00