Rip Curl Search Arica, Chile – Day Two

surfing photos and news

CONDITIONS: 6-10 foot, offshore, then onshore
HEATS HELD: Last of Round One, First of Round Two
NATURE'S CALL: Die, Gringo, Die!
PREDICTIONS: More fast hard mornings and windy afternoons

Strider Waseleski called it one of the heaviest things he'd ever seen (and he's seen some heavy shit in his day): South African Royden Bryson caught inside, washed up onto the rocks, and fully unloaded on by the incoming set. Rag-dolled up onto the jagged reef with all the humor of a car accident. At 7:30 in the morning, it woke the beach up more than a strong cup of Chilean coffee.

Oh, and Happy International Surfing Day everyone. The sun is making a rare appearance and the swell is taking it up a notch, so that {{{CJ}}} and Damien Hobgood, Bobby Martinez and Kelly Slater (all off duty from the day's heats) are out surfing the mid-bay bombora just beyond the contest site. Back on the beach, we'd pick up some trash but there really isn't any. Aside from the smell of diesel from the nearby port, this town is extraordinarily clean. Each morning, city workers can be found sweeping the windblown sand clean from the sidewalks and there's not a scrap of trash anywhere. Maybe Chileans are really clean. Maybe Arica is just putting on its best face for its international visitors. Either way, it's nice to see. And ISD finds the world's best surfers rounding out the competition's soft spot in some pretty hard conditions.

So, where were we? Oh yeah, Royden on the reef. His board smashed. Rocks gouged into the rails. Crabbing his way up to safety in an almost unheard of emergency maneuver. And somehow, he was completely unscathed. Shaken, but not scarred. And if any of the other 'CTers watching were traumatized by witnessing the incident, they tried not to let on. And Royden he paddled back out — puking seawater as he went — and scored a pretty sick little barrel. Travis Logie still won the heat, but Royden still may get a by in the next round cause Adriano de Souza had to get 15 stitches from his encounter with the reef yesterday. Comes around, goes around.

Finishing off the Round One heats in a nice offshore wind, Leonardo Neves, Kai Otton and Taylor Knox all advanced to Round Three as well, and the "hombre o hombre" Round Two death heats got under way in dead still winds — which, by the way, is a bad sign. When the wind dies, it means it's about the turn onshore, which means the comp is done for the day almost immediately.

As Taj Burrow and local hero Christian Morello paddled out, the surf suddenly got pretty huge. Like, maybe they'd been tricked into undergunning themselves. That's how it looked as they scratched for the first few sets, and TB even {{{recalls}}} wondering if his 6'4" Firewire was gonna be enough. Between that, the massive crowd cheering for the Chilean underdog and a couple early wipeouts, Taj admits he started out a bit worried. But his professionalism kicked in and, despite some great rides by Morello, Burrow finally sealed the heat.

Andy Irons was still in bed 15 minutes before his heat started. He drove to the contest site in his wetsuit, lept into the keyhole like he was home on Kauai and then, well, then he waited. Despite the size, the first half of the heat was virtually scoreless. So when Selman nailed two quick insiders with just five minutes to go, putting Andy in a near combo situation, things didn't look good. But when the right wave presented itself, AI was easily up to the challenge, threading a long narrow tunnel across the inside shelf for a heat-sealing 9.7. "It was almost all bad," said AI afterward, "and then it was all good."

In the final heat of the morning, still unsponsored Bede Durbidge and Rip Curl wildcard Keiren Perrow maybe got short changed. As soon as that winds kicks up, the fickle El Gringo is no longer a tube. And if it's not a tube, then it not much of anything but a dare to see how close you wanna ride to the reef. Not a smart bet. The heat slipped away with very few rides, Bede stepped up with an 8-pointer in the last couple minutes, and Keiren followed with a double-up, highline, spitting 9.73. That was El Gringo waving goodbye. Officials sent Tom Whittaker and Bruno Santos on the sketchy paddle-out, then promptly called it a day. Sorry guys, you get to wake up early tomorrow.

And if you're watching the webcast from home, you'd better wake up early, too. Chile is three hours ahead of California and about on pace with the East Coast, but although swell conditions remain promising, it's likely most days of competition will be packed up by noon. So, if you can't find a good cup of coffee that early, maybe just download that clip of Royden's exit strategy. Works every time.

Heat 13: Travis Logie (ZAF) 11.50, Royden Bryson (ZAF) 10.00, Greg Emslie (ZAF) 7.00
Heat 14: Leonardo Neves (BRA) 15.26, Cory Lopez (USA) 9.66, Shaun Cansdell (AUS) 5.10
Heat 15: Kai Otton (AUS) 18.10, Josh Kerr (AUS) 12.67, Rodrigo Dornelles (BRA) 7.00
Heat 16: Taylor Knox (USA) 13.{{{90}}}, CJ Hobgood (USA) 7.94, Dayyan Neve (AUS) 2.90

Heat 4: Tom Whitaker (AUS) vs. Bruno Santos (BRA)
Heat 5: Daniel Wills (HAW) vs. David Weare (ZAF)
Heat 6: Cory Lopez (USA) vs. Luke Munro (AUS)
Heat 7: Dean MOrrison (AUS) vs. Neco Padaratz (BRA)
Heat 8: Chris Ward (USA) vs. Gabe Kling (USA)
Heat 9: Ben Dunn (AUS) vs. Troy Brooks (AUS)
Heat 10: Luke Stedman (AUS) vs. Michael Lowe (AUS)
Heat 11: Adriano de Souza (BRA) vs. Royden Bryson (ZAF)
Heat 12: Adrian Buchan (AUS) vs. Shaun Cansdell (AUS)
Heat 13: Ricky Basnett (ZAF) vs. Rodrigo Dornelles (BRA)
Heat 14: Frederick Patacchia (HAW) vs. Dayyan Neve (AUS)
Heat 15: Bernardo Miranda (BRA) vs. CJ Hobgood (USA)
Heat 16: Greg Emslie (ZAF) vs. Josh Kerr (AUS)