Local surfer Dylan Lighfoot has been drawn to surf against 11 time world champion Kelly Slater in Round One of the JBay Open, which starts today in Jeffreys Bay.
“Kelly is always a danger man at Supertubes and could easily win the event,” said Dylan.
The winner of the Round One encounter goes straight through to Round Three while the surfers coming second and third get the chance to surf again in Round Two.
At the media launch last night, the current top ranked surfer in the world, Gabriel Medina said that he is stoked to be surfing Jeffreys Bay for the first time.
“This is my first time here in JBay and it feels good,” said Medina.
“I have brought all my family here and everyone is having a lot of fun. I have had some good surfs and I am going to try and do better than the Brazilian soccer team!”
Jordy Smith, the defending title holder in Jeffreys Bay said he is amping to win the event and make it three in a row, after having won in 2011 and 2012.
“Supertubes is my favourite wave in the world and I will have the home ground advantage in JBay so will be going for the win,” said Smith.
In welcoming the surfers back to Jeffreys Bay, Councillor Virginia Benjamin from the Kouga Council said the JBay WinterFest is worth around 70 – 80 million rand to the local economy.
“We have worked with the local surf community over the past two years to bring the WCT back to Jeffreys Bay and it is great to have the event as part of the JBay WinterFest,” said Benjamin.
The JBay Open will start this morning and organisers are hoping to get a full day of surfing in today.
J-Bay Open Round 1 Match-Ups:
Heat 1: Mick Fanning (AUS), Sebastian Zietz (HAW), Dion Atkinson (AUS)
Heat 2: Taj Burrow (AUS), Fredrick Patacchia (HAW), Matt Wilkinson (AUS)
Heat 3: Joel Parkinson (AUS), Kai Otton (AUS), Glenn Hall (IRL)
Heat 4: Michel Bourez (PYF), Adrian Buchan (AUS), Raoni Monteiro (BRA)
Heat 5: Gabriel Medina (BRA), Adam Melling (AUS), Brett Simpson (USA)
Heat 6: Kelly Slater (USA), Mitch Crews (AUS), Dylan Lightfoot (ZAF)
Heat 7: Nat Young (USA), Miguel Pupo (BRA), Aritz Aranburu (ESP)
Heat 8: Adriano de Souza (BRA), C.J. Hobgood (USA), Alejo Muniz (BRA)
Heat 9: Josh Kerr (AUS), Filipe Toledo (BRA), Tiago Pires (PRT)
Heat 10: Jordy Smith (ZAF), Owen Wright (AUS), Jadson Andre (BRA)
Heat 11: John John Florence (HAW), Bede Durbidge (AUS), Jeremy Flores (FRA)
Heat 12: Kolohe Andino (USA), Julian Wilson (AUS), Travis Logie (ZAF)