Four talented South African surfers have been granted wildcard entries into the prestigious Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) Prime rated Mr Price Pro Ballito, taking place from today until 6 July.
Michael February (CT) and Slade Prestwich (Dbn) will make their way into the event courtesy of Mr Price wildcards, while David Van Zyl (Dbn) and Dylan Lightfoot (JBay), will take on the worlds’ best courtesy of ASP Africa wildcards.
Jeffreys Bay local Dylan Lightfoot will also be surfing in the JBay Open, after winning the JBU Supertrial at Supertubes recently.
The JBay Open forms part of the JBay Winterfest, a multi sport festival that will take place in the surf capital of South Africa from 10 – 20 July.
2009 Mr Price Pro Champion Tanner Gudauskas (USA), along with World No. 19 Fred Patacchia Jnr (HAW), are the two international wildcards selected to compete for Mr Price Pro Ballito glory next week.
Due to the exclusive 96-man field, featuring only the top ranked surfers on the ASP Qualifying Series (QS), a wildcard entry will prove invaluable for both local, and international surfers hoping to improve their QS ranking, in order to qualify for other Prime and Six Star events and ultimately for the elite ASP World Championship Tour (WCT).
These six surfers will be guaranteed a minimum of 380 ratings points and R7941 (US$750), should they bow out early and, a substantial 6500 points and R423 566 (US$40,000) should they win the entire event!
South African hopefuls February, Prestwich, Van Zyl and Lightfoot, will seize the opportunity to compete in an ASP Prime, in the hope of breaking into the Top 100, on the QS rankings.
A total of four South African surfers have qualified for the main event via their ASP World ranking. They include World No. 11 Jordy Smith (RSA), World No. 24 Travis Logie (Dbn), Beyrick De Vries (Umhlanga) who is No. 28 on the QS rankings and Dale Staples (St Francis Bay) who is No. 74 on the QS rankings.
Smith, who finished runner-up to Julian Wilson (AUS) in 2013, is the top seed for the event followed by elite World Tour campaigners Kai Otton (AUS), CJ Hobgood (USA), Adriano De Souza (BRA) and Sebastian Zietz (HAW) who complete the top five seeds.