Sintra Portugal Pro Day 4

Round 4 of competition in the Pro Men’s division of the Sintra Pro was held in rough, windy conditions today, with a swell that had increased significantly since the previous day. When the swell was smaller during the previous days’ competition, the paddle out had been challenging. But with another metre or more of swell to contend with, it was now impossible.

For this reason, it was decided that the jet-ski would be used for ferrying the riders to the outside peak, which was breaking some 100 metres from shore. This decision alone was not without peril, as Diego Cabrera would find out when he was forced to eject from the sled after a large wave nearly tipped the ski over.
After only a few mishaps the system of escorting riders to the take off soon operated smoothly, and competition was under way.
Even with jet-ski assistance, it was still difficult for many riders to find even two scoring rides in a 35-minute heat. This was the fate of many eliminations during this round, with 3rd place in almost every heat occurring due to a lack of waves more than anything else.
Those who did find the waves in this critical round of competition were Alex Uranga, Roberto Bruno, Diego Cabrera, Pierre Louis Costes, Iain Campbell and Tristan Roberts, who were all standouts and heat winners. We took the opportunity to get an idea of the conditions from those in the water for a change.
Here is some insight from Brazil’s Roberto Bruno:
“My heat was really hard. I came to surf good waves, so this was hard.
The waves today were not good, with too much strong current, and the waves closing out a lot. But that’s life in competition sometimes.”

Tristan Roberts (SAF) Images: João Arújo

Current World tour ratings leader Iain Campbell kept his world title dreams alive with another strong performance. Here is what he had to say about the day’s conditions:
“Conditions were pretty difficult out there. Definitely some of the toughest conditions we have had to contest here in Sintra by a big margin.”
“But, yeah, I’m happy with the heat. I got some good scores, which I didn’t really expect, and you can’t really hear much out there. I had a plan to kinda stay out the back and do single moves on the waves so I could get as many waves as possible and find as many opportunities as possible. I did that until my last wave, which took me a bit too far in, so I finished my heat there with about 10 minutes to go.”

The early finishes for many riders in these conditions was mostly due to the impossibility of paddling back out to the peak, with the strong current. In some cases, riders returned to shore with over 10 minutes remaining.
Miguel Adao has been another standout in this event, and after finishing 2nd in his heat, the Portuguese star had this to share:
“It was really difficult, so my plan was to only ride the waves short, and then leave me time to get back outside. With about 15 minutes to go, I was stuck inside, and just paddling, paddling and couldn’t get back out. I was lucky to already have a good wave, a big roll, and a low score as a back-up. So, I am happy with my result.”

Surviving heats is one thing, but thriving in the conditions is another. Tristan Roberts wowed the crowd in the dying seconds of his heat with a spectacular rollo off a huge end section. The judges saw it as one of the best moves of the whole event and rewarded him with a 9.75. Here is Tristan’s take on things:
“As I took off, it was quite a foamy wave, and I rode past the first section, which I had really wanted to use. I didn’t have much speed, but flying into a big end section, I didn’t have much speed to much more than a roll.”
“The landing was heavy, I just put it all on the line as it was the end of the heat. But the wave kind of pushed me out the front luckily, so I was really happy I went for it in the end.”
Conditions are set to calm down tomorrow and a full day of action is scheduled. Don’t miss a second of it and tune into the live webcast on YouTube and cheer on your favourites through the APB Facebook Page.



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