Sunshine Coast surfer Chris Friend advances to 3rd round of Hainan Classic
The Sunshine Coast’s Chris Friend pulls out all stops in China’s Hainan Classic.
SUNSHINE Coast surfer Chris Friend has moved through to the third round of the ASP 4-Star Hainan Classic in China.
In one metre-plus waves at Wanning, Friend finished second in his round-of-32 heat to move within striking distance of a quarter-final berth.
He finished with a two-wave total of 14.06 out of 20 to be runner-up behind Peru’s Cristobal De Col (15.67) and ahead of New Zealand’s Matt-Lewis Hewitt (11.60) and Argentina’s Santiago Di Pace (9.56).
De Col took control of the heat early with an 8.00 ride and never relinquished his ascendency.
Friend posted a 6.93 with his third wave before looking increasingly more dangerous with each scoring ride. His final wave of 7.13 was enough to give him the runners-up spot by a comfortable margin.
He will next face fellow Australian Heath Joske, France’s Marc Lacomare and Japan’s Kenta Hayashi in the round of 16 today, ahead of tomorrow’s final day of competition.
Lacomare stamped his authority on the competition yesterday with a perfect 10-point ride in his second heat. He pulled off two massive drops before taking on a huge barrel and coming out unscathed.
"I thought I was going to lose it, but I held on and saw this barrel and pulled in," Lacomore said.
"It’s good when everything comes together. That barrel was a nice bonus, so I’m stoked."
He could manage only a 5.23 with his other wave and ended up finishing second to France’s Joan Duru, who scored 17.00 through 8.00 and 9.00-point rides.
Organiser said they expected conditions to remain steady for the round of 16 and quarter-finals today.