Jun 14, 2008

WQS Dhonveli finals : Hawaiians rule !

Former ASP World Junior champion Kekoa Bacalso (Haw) finally stepped up to the winners plate on the WQS winning in perfect waves at Pasta Point, defeating fellow Dustin Barca (Haw). One of the highlights of the event was the return of ex-world Champion, Sunny Garcia to the qualifying events. Hawaiian Sunny made it to the Round of 16, giving him the 9th place and 1650 points, definitely a keeper for his 2008 campaign to made it back to the WCT in the 2009 (he’s now ranked 4th,Sunny is hoping to be the oldest surfer ever to requalify for the WCT at 38.). It was another Hawaiian (Makua Rothman) who beat Sunny Garcia. Five Hawaiian’s came into the final day of 8 surfers for the quarter finals, an unprecedented event in history.

“It was such a pleasure to surf against Sunny who I have so much respect for and to win the heat was great for me today," Rothman said. "The Hawaiians are doing good here because the waves are so good. We know how to surf good waves, powerful full bottom-to-top turns. This is an event that delivers waves so we expect to do well. We’re here as a team and hopefully we can win.”

The quality and consistency of the surf has been amazing all week, starting slowly at 2-3ft, peaking at 5-6ft for the end of the week and being 4-5ft for the finals. With Hawaian measurements ! Most recreational surfers would call those waves at least 2ft, just looking at wave-face. The wind has been low to moderate WSW making slight cross-shores, which blow perfectly offshore on the rights like Sultans or Jailbreaks. Although there has been heats ran at Jails in the past, it’s obviously a logistical nightmare to move judges, production and surfers from Chaaya Dhonveli resort, hosting Pasta Point.

Final : 17.87 Kekoa Bacalso - 14.50 Dustin Barca

Semi-final 1 : 16.83 Kekoa Bacalso - 13.84 Joel Centeio

Semi-final 2 : 15.90 Dustin Barca - 15.17 Leonardo Neves

Best European : Tiago Pires (Portugal, Quarters)

Best Brazilian : Leonardo Neves (Semi)

Best American : Nate Yeomans (Quarters)

Best Australians : Michael Campbell, Phillip MacDonald, Nathan Hedge, Adam Robertson, Drew Courtney (Best of 16, Round 8)

Best South African : Damien Fahrenfort (Best of 48, Round 6)

Best New Zealander : Jay Quinn, Bobby Hansen (Best of 96, Round 5)

Best Japanese : Teppei Tajima (Best of 96, Round 5)

Ranking after 18 events (6 events 5 or 6star prime)

1 Gudauskas,Patrick(USA) 7894

2 Ware,Austin(USA) 7838

3 Bettero,Hizunome(BRA) 7500

4 Garcia,Sunny(HAW) 7215

5 Bacalso,Kekoa(HAW) 7162

6 Weare,David(ZAF) 7113

7 Simpson,Brett(USA) 7075

8 Courtney,Drew(AUS) 6731

9 Yeomans,Nathan(USA) 6706

10 Hedge,Nathan(AUS) 6594

Past 7 WQS winners

2007 Dhonveli Sri Lankan Pro : Heitor ALVES (BRA)

2006 Dhonveli Sri Lankan Pro : Luke MUNRO (AUS)

2005 Lohifushi Deep Blue Oneill : Daniel REDMAN (ZAF)

2004 Lohifushi Deep Blue Oneill : Toby MARTIN (AUS)

2003 Lohifushi Deep Blue Oneill : Trent MUNRO (AUS)

2002 Lohifushi Deep Blue Oneill : Tim CURRAN (USA)

2001 Lohifushi Deep Blue Oneill : Chris WARD (USA)

Jun 13, 2008

Hyundai babies take you surfing

It has nothing to do with Maldives ! But that video is such a sweet way to show that surfing has taken over the new generation and definitely goes mainstream ! Okay, 4WD drive is very eco unfriendly but how could the baby drive on the sand ?

Jun 10, 2008

Dhonveli WQS 6 star : Maldivian surfers still need to train harder to beat the Pros

After competing in the Atoll Trials on June 8th in sloppy 2ft surf, the top 8 Maldivian surfers have entered the main draw of the World Qualifying Series SriLankan Airlines Pro. The ASP 6 Star Prime has begun at Pasta Point and surf conditions are looking at perfect 3-5ft all week.
After Round 1 of 144, all the
Maldivian surfers have finished last in their heats. Here are their scores (Best 2 waves. Out of 20). What happened to Mohamed ‘Billu’ Erushaadh ?

Hussein “Iboo” Areef 8.77

Mohamed Irushad 5.40

Ahmed "Mike" Shihaz 5.26

Abdullah "Fuku" Areef 4.53

Ahmed Aznil 3.50

Azly Naseem 3.20

Mauroof Ahmed 2.17

Out of 96 competitors, only 11 competitors could have been beaten by Iboo’s score. Quite a few Hawaians have been scoring pretty low.But there is definetely a lack of good scores in the Maldivian surf community to really hope that a Maldivian surfer could do well (win a few heats) in that contest. Maldives owns some of the best waves in the world but it will take some years before it breeds some of the best surfers.

8.60 Thomas Bady (FRA)

8.24 Chaz Chidester (HAW)

8.07 Luke Cheadle AUS

8.02 Ola Eleogram (HAW)

7.67 Frederic Robin (FRA)

6.92 Jose Maria Cabrera (CNY)

6.84 Marcelo Nunes (BRA)

6.30 Brent Dorrington (AUS)

5.63 Bear Bailey (HAW )

4.44 Mason Ho (HAW)

3.06 Jake Davi (HAW)

Don't miss the live action all week (last day June15). Check the webcast online !

Jun 2, 2008

2007 record year for tourism

With a total of 675,889 tourists, it has been recorded that 2007 had been a record year for tourist arrivals in the Maldives. It was projected that the arrivals would be 8.5% higher than the previous year; however, tourist arrivals exceeded the projection by 3.8% resulting in a 12.3% increase from the previous year.

The monthly arrivals figures are as follows: January (64,570), February (65,224), March (64,491), April (63,171), May (46,602), June (38,457), July (51,025), August (53,168), September (48,468), October (58,706), November (56,797), and December (65,210). With 125,158 tourist arrivals, United Kingdom ranked top among the source markets, followed by Italy with a total of 117,246 tourists.

Third highest ranked was Germany with 72,269 tourists followed by France, Japan and China with a total of 45,301, 41,121 and 35,976 tourists respectively. The total bed nights for the end of 2007 were 5,293,224, and this is an increase of 9.7% than the previous year. The occupancy recorded for resorts/hotels for the year 2007 was 82.9%. An average of 17,511 beds had been operated throughout last year. The average stay of a tourist has increased to 8.5 days for 2007 from 8.0 days in 2006.

Tony Hussein death 2

According to Dara, surfguide at Chaaya Dhonveli, Tony Husseing went surfing on May,27th at Pasta Point. As dara said 'He walked from shore and as he was gonna duckdive a wave, a longboarder went straight to him and there was some weird interaction. Then, Tony was floating face down. I was shooting from the beach at that moment so I jumped in the water to recover him. He had collapsed and was pronounced dead a few moments afterwards. Although he had some injury on the back of his head, it's been said by the doctor on Dhonveli that he had been striken by a heart attack".
Hinde's story, recounted in detail by Shawn Shamlou in The Surfer's Journal, is a rare tale of "Serendipity" and the ultimate result of surf adventure. "It wasn't until Tony's fourth trip (...) in 1975, that waves outside of Male were found," Shamlou wrote. "Tony headed straight for a spot he had seen on a very onshore day, hoping this time it would be the right season. What he found changed his life forever: not one, but two perfect waves breaking off an uninhabited island, an unreal right/left setup (...) After that first hallmark surf, Tony literally peered out from the surf break and sussed out the closest inhabited landmass-Himmafushi Island. That's the island where Tony would live. He'd found the end of his road."