Australian young gun Owen Wright is flying high after winning the Boost Mobile SurfSho presented by Samsung at Bondi Beach today.
The 20-year old from Lennox Head, NSW, competed against some of the biggest names in surfing, including Taj Burrow, Mick Fanning and Kelly Slater, during the three-day aerial surfing extravaganza. Owen takes home $25,000 in prize money, along with a stack of other prizes.
When receiving his trophy on the SurfSho podium, Wright said: "I'm ecstatic! Where's the thesaurus to describe how I feel? It was a great final, great atmosphere, and a great crowd. I'm buzzing! It's been a big three days. I'm stoked to be at Bondi and walking away with the Boost Mobile SurfSho trophy and this cheque!"
During the final this afternoon, Owen threw down some gravity-defying moves to out-fly fellow surfers including reigning world champion Mick Fanning and world number two Jordy Smith (ZAF), to take home the major prize. This is the second time the aerial specialist has won the ASP specialty event, beating Kelly Slater in the final in 2008.
Owen boosted high over Bondi's ramping waves, performing a massive full rotating aerial to score a near perfect 9.8 (out of a possible 10). He then backed it up with a similar manoeuvre scoring 8.3. His closest competitor in the final was Cooper Chapman, scoring a 7.17 for a front-side air reverse.
Bondi Beach provided the ideal playground for the event today, with 4-5 foot waves providing perfect aerial conditions on the water, and more than 30,000 spectators watching on in sunny conditions and soaking up the festival atmosphere.
In contrast to a traditional surfing competition, the day's format followed a unique format in which a wheel was spun at the start of each heat, dictating which aerial tricks the surfers had to perform. B, O, O, S, T letters were awarded for each successful manoeuvre and the six highest scoring surfers who spelt 'BOOST' went into the final.
John Shimooka, event spokesperson and former pro-surfer commented: "Surfing's finally back at Bondi Beach after a 20 year hiatus. This weekend, Bondi witnessed some of the biggest moves performed by some of the world's best surfers, and judging from the crowd, they enjoyed every minute of it. We can't wait to bring the event here again next year."