Jordy Smith carved his way into the quarterfinals of the Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast at Snapper Rocks in Australia this morning, winning an exciting Round 4 tussle with former two time event champion Joel Parkinson (AUS) and Miguel Pupo (BRA).
Smith, 24, looking leaner and stronger than during his injury plagued 2011 season, utilised his full arsenal of aerial manoeuvres and power carves to squeak past Parkinson by a mere 0.14 of a point with their respective heat tallies being 15.44 points to 15.30.
“I wanted to beat Joel (Parkinson) bad,” Smith said. “He has beaten me pretty much my whole life and he is also one of my favourite surfers, so it’s tough to come up against him.”
In his post-heat interview Smith admitted to now following a more balanced diet, cutting out junk food like cheese burgers, and also referred to a paddle battle during the heat where he beat Parkinson to the strategically important inside position in the line-up.
Their rivalry will be renewed when they meet again in the quarterfinals after Parkinson, a Snapper Rocks local and runner-up on last year’s ASP World Tour, posted the event’s first perfect 10 point ride in 2012 in his Round 5 match up against Julian Wilson (AUS). Parkinson’s intimate knowledge of the break saw him catch the best waves and eliminate the 2011 ASP Rookie of the Year.
“I got stung by a blue bottle and that fired me up!” Parkinson said. “There’s still some good waves out there and I thought we were going to have an air off. Julian (Wilson) did some, and I tried a few, then that one wave came through and it had some good air sections, but they were better turn sections.
“I’ve got some rivalries going today – I surfed against Jordy (Smith) and we have a good one going, now Julian and I are building one too. That’s what makes healthy competition. You’re happy to get involved in a real rivalry.”
Smith, who finished second to Pupo by a scant 0.04 of a point in the Round 1 of the event on Saturday, put veteran power surfer, Taylor Knox (USA), 40, to the sword in Round 2 on Sunday before overcoming Raoni Monteiro (BRA) in Round 3 yesterday.
Fellow South African Travis Logie, who has a pair of last 16 finishes in the Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast on his resume, started this year’s event with a sub standard performance but the 31 year old Durbanite bounced back to defeat No. 9 seed Alejo Muniz (BRA) in Round 2 before bowing out to third seed Taj Burrow (AUS) in Round 3, finishing equal 13th overall and pocketing US $8 500 and 1 750 rankings points.
Adriano de Souza (BRA), Kelly Slater (USA), 40, reigning 11 x ASP World Champion and last year’s Quiksilver Pro winner, and Burrow were the other three Round 4 heat winners who progressed directly to the quarterfinals. Their respective opponents will be Australians Owen Wright, Josh Kerr and Adrian Buchan who all won their Round 5 clashes.
UPCOMING QUIKSILVER PRO GOLD COAST QUARTERFINAL MATCH-UPS:
HEAT 1: Adriano De Souza (BRA) vs. Owen Wright (AUS)
HEAT 2: Kelly Slater (USA) vs. Josh Kerr (AUS)
HEAT 3: Jordy Smith (ZAF) vs. Joel Parkinson (AUS)
HEAT 4: Taj Burrow (AUS) vs. Adrian Buchan (AUS)
QUIKSILVER PRO GOLD COAST ROUND 5 RESULTS:
HEAT 1: Owen Wright (AUS) 16.20 def. Michel Bourez (PYF) 15.43
HEAT 2: Josh Kerr (AUS) 14.44 def. Heitor Alves (BRA) 9.84
HEAT 3: Joel Parkinson (AUS) 18.00 def. Julian Wilson (AUS) 10.06
HEAT 4: Adrian Buchan (AUS) 14.03 def. Miguel Pupo (BRA) 13.27
QUIKSILVER PRO GOLD COAST ROUND 4 RESULTS:
HEAT 1: Adriano De Souza (BRA) 15.37, Owen Wright (AUS) 15.134, Josh Kerr (AUS) 9.00
HEAT 2: Kelly Slater (USA) 14.00, Michel Bourez (PYF) 12.13, Heitor Alves (BRA) 11.10
HEAT 3: Jordy Smith (ZAF) 15.44, Joel Parkinson (AUS) 15.30, Miguel Pupo (BRA) 11.04
HEAT 4: Taj Burrow (AUS) 17.34, Adrian Buchan (AUS) 12.33, Julian Wilson (AUS) 9.33