(Tuesday 16th September, 2008): AUSTRALIAN surfer Wade Goodall (Caloundra, Qld, Aus) will be gunning for back-to-back Billabong Cloud 9 Invitational crowns when the second annual tournament gets underway at the remote, island jewel of Siargao in the Philippines this weekend.
The Sunshine Coast ace rode barrel after faultless barrel to topple a talented-stacked field following three days of absolute perfection during the inaugural tournament in 2007.
Cloud 9, once nominated as one of the ten best waves in the world, will once again set the scene for a tube-riding showdown with an international field of surfers confirmed to compete in the world’s premier tube-riding tournament scheduled for September 20-26, 2008.
Reigning title holder Goodall, who beat Gold Coast goofy-footer Nick Vasicek in ideal 1.5-2-metre tubes, is excited about the prospect of again surfing perfect barrels in this year’s tournament.
“Cloud 9’s tubes were the best waves I have ever had in a contest and just to have the opportunity to go there again is a real treat,” said Goodall.
“The place is really special to me. I turned 21 on the barge on the way over to the inaugural tournament and the last three days of competition were just full of perfect barrels. Hopefully, we’ll get similar conditions for this year’s event.”
An ultra perfect right hander located on the southeast coast of the Philippines, the Cloud 9 event has attracted confirmation from some of the world’s most prolific tube riders, including 2006 Pipeline Master Jamie O’Brien (Hawaii) and professional big wave rider Makua Rothman (Hawaii), as well as fearless Australian chargers Laurie Towner (Yamba, NSW, Aus) and Dylan Longbottom (Coolangatta, Qld, Aus).
48 surfers from Hawaii, Japan, Australia, Indonesia, Israel and 12 local wildcards will compete in a specialised format, which culminates in man on man heats. What separates the Billabong Cloud 9 Invitational from standard competitive surfing is that invited contestants are involved in deciding what conditions they will surf in.
With only two full days required to finalise the competition and a seven-day competition window, organisers have the luxury to wait for ideal conditions in which to run the event during Cloud 9’s prime swell period.
Bolstering to the tournament’s already premier line-up of surfers is the inclusion of 2006 event champion Ryan Hipwood (Mermaid Beach, Qld, Aus) and renowned aerialist Dave Reardon-Smith (Yaroomba, Qld, Aus), along with a host of Hawaiians including Jason Shibata, TJ Barron, Dustin Cuizon, Charlie Carroll, Granger Larsen and Mikala Jones.
Renowned Balinese surfers Rahtu Suargita, Lee Wilson, Marlon Gerber, Wyan ‘Kopling’ Wirtima, Made ‘Raditya’ Rhondi, Mustofa Jeksen and Tipi Jabrik will also travel to the neighbouring Philippines to contest the specialty event and will no doubt push the performance levels of the international field.
Due to Siargao’s proximity to the Philippines, big swells from the Pacific Ocean roll in from the second deepest stretch of water in the world to create flawlessly hollow waves.
The Billabong Cloud 9 Invitational is proudly supported by the Provincial Government of Surigao Del Norte with support from the Department of Tourism Philippines.
Official Entry List:
1) Ryan Hipwood (Aus)
2) Made ‘Raditya’ Rhondi (Bali)
3) Wyan ‘Kopling’ Wirtima (Bali)
4) Steven Walsh (Aus)
5) TJ Barron (Haw)
6) Dave Reardon-Smith (Aus)
7) Jason Shibata (Haw)
8) Lee Wilson (Bali)
9) Tipi Jabrik (Bali)
10) Wade Goodall (Aus)
11) Damien Wills (Aus)
12) Dustin Cuizon (Haw)
13) Makua Rothman (Haw)
14) Jamie O’Brien (Haw)
15) Charlie Carroll (Haw)
16) Dylan Longbottom (Aus)
17) Michael Brennan (Aus)
18) Laurie Towner (Aus)
19) Mikala Jones (Haw)
20) Made Adi ‘Bol’ Putra (Bali)
21) Marlon Gerber (Bali)
22) Shinpei Horguchi (Japan)
23) Granger Larson (Haw)
24) Michael Hopkins (Aus)
25) Mark Visser (Aus)
26) Yonatan Klein (Israel)
27) Gil Zilkha (Israel)
28) Rahtu Suargita (Bali)
29) Mustofa Jeksen (Bali)
30) Adam Bennetts (Aus)
+ 6 riders TBC
+12 Philippines Wildcards
Billabong Cloud 9 Invitational Media Manager
Ph. +61 422 987 069
Em. [email protected]