Padang Padang, Bali, Indonesia – Local Kuta Beach surfer Rahtu Suargita and Uluwatu local Alik Rudiarta put on a tuberiding clinic at Padang Padang on Sunday, topping a field of 16 of Bali’s best young local surfers in the trials of the 2013 Rip Curl Cup Padang Padang Invitational.
As the top two finishers in the trials, Suargita (29, Kuta, Bali) and Rudiarta (24, Uluwatu, Bali) earned wildcard berths into the main event and the chance to compete for $10,000 in prize money. They will join 30 of the world’s best tube riders at Padang Padang when an ideal swell prompts contest directors to run the 2013 Rip Curl Cup, any day between now and August 15th.
The 16 local Balinese surfers competing in the trials were met with a powerful new swell pouring into the Padang reef on Sunday morning. While a rising tide throughout the day made for somewhat inconsistent sets in the later heats, solid 4 to 5 foot tubes were still thundering over the reef all day.
In the Final it was Suargita who stole the show and first place, threading a pair of deep barrels across the inside section before getting spat out into the channel. For Suargita, a longtime invitee to the Rip Curl Cup over the years, surfing his way into the event through the trials was a validation of his spot in the most prestigious surf contest in Indonesia.
“This is the first time I’ve had to get into the main event from the trials and it actually feels amazing,” Suargita said. “Padang Padang is the proving grounds for all Balinese surfers. This is a holy place, it’s a photo studio, and it’s the office for every pro surfer on the island. To win the trials here and be recognized is a big honor.”
Rudiarta meanwhile surfed impressively all day, posting the highest heat total of the day in his semi-final heat. The regularfooter overcame an interference call against him in the Final by weaving his way through a pair of impossibly deep backhand barrels and racking up enough points to claim second place, ahead of 19-year-old Bingin local Agus Dag Dag (third place) and 20-year-old Uluwatu standout Blacky (fourth place).
“This will be my first time surfing in Padang Cup,” said an elated Rudiarta on the awards podium. “I’m so happy to be in this event and to be able to represent my home break Uluwatu. I want to win this contest for all the Ulu boys!”
Suargita and Rudiarta were crowned on the giant awards podium on Padang beach as part of the official event opening ceremony. A massive crowd showed up at Padang Padang to watch the presentation and press conference with the 32 invited surfers – 16 of Indonesia’s best and 16 of the world’s top tube riders – as well as the official contest heat draw.
The opening ceremony was capped off with the traditional Balinese kecak dance performance, to ask the Balinese gods for permission to hold the contest at this sacred spot and for a massive Padang swell to arrive during the waiting period.
2013 Rip Curl Cup Trials Results:
1st Rahtu Suargita* 11.67
2nd Alik Rudiarta* 8.10
3rd Agus Dag Dag 6.77
4th Blacky 6.30
*Earn local wildcard spots in 2013 Rip Curl Cup at Padang Padang
2013 Rip Curl Cup opening-round heat draw:
Heat 1: Christian Fletcher (USA), Dylan Longbottom (Australia), Pepen Hendrik (Bali), Lee Wilson (Bali).
Heat 2: Usman Trioko (Lombok), Alik Rudiarta (Bali), Luke Hynd (Australia), Kevin Bourez (Tahiti).
Heat 3: Mega Semadhi (Bali), Betet Merta (Bali), Kekoa Bacalso (Hawaii), *Mystery Wildcard.
Heat 4: Wayan Gobleg (Bali), Mustofa Jeksen (Bali), Anthony Walsh (Australia), Bruno Santos (Brazil).
Heat 5: Made Lana (Bali), Dede Suryana (Java), Jamie O’Brien (Hawaii), Ry Craike (Australia).
Heat 6: Rizal Tandjung (Bali), Bol Adi Putra (Bali), Chris Ward (USA), Jack Robinson (Australia).
Heat 7: Raditya Rondi (Bali), Rahtu Suargita (Bali), Laurie Towner (Australia), Mark Occhilupo (Australia).
Heat 8: Garut Widiarta (Bali), Marlon Gerber (Bali), Jacob Willcox (Australia), Sean Peggs (NZ).