Australian Open Surfmasters presented by Play It Safe by the Water

4 Sep 2006 0 Share

Phillip Island Surfer Simon McShane, part of a winning trio of Phillip Island surfers in the Men's Open who won their round one heats at Bells yesterday

Phillip Island Surfer Simon McShane, part of a winning trio of Phillip Island surfers in the Men's Open who won their round one heats at Bells yesterday

Stormy 2m swells arrived on Victoria's Surfcoast for day two of the Australian Surf Masters which saw the event move from Bells Beach to the protected nearby point break at Torquay. The clean and gentle 1m surf at Torquay Point saw many of the elder divisions compete through their opening rounds with a number of standout performances notched up by previous winners of Australian titles.

Central Coast NSW surfer Sandra English has numerous national wins over her long and decorated career and she could well add two more wins after winning her opening round heats of the over 28 and over 35 women's divisions.

Gold Coast Queensland surfer Mandy Roberts, a previous winner at the Surf Masters, also won her opening heats in both divisions and the talented pair appear likely to again battle it in both divisions this year.

A number of famous names from past years took to the water today and just some of the impressive opening heat wins included NSW's Rod Baldwin, Gold Coast's John Truman and Victoria's Phil Trigger.

The biggest name at the event nearly has to go to Wollongong's former favourite son, now well and truly entrenched on the mid north coast near Crescent Head - former Pipeline Masters Champion , Robbie Page! Pagey scored a big opening win in his over 35 division win and the likeable rogue of surfing has clearly maintained his passion and fitness since retiring from professional surfing over a decade ago!

" I've spent most of the past twelve years based in France but I'm glad to be back and well settled on the NSW north coast. I love competing and I'm looking forward to my next round which will hopefully be back at Bells in some great waves. It's a lot of fun here and it's good to catch up with people I haven't seen in a long time!"

Conditions are expected to settle for tomorrow and winds tend offshore which should see the event resume in good clean waves at Bells Beach.

While it's still very early days in this event and nearly impossible to select leading state teams, what can be said is that the local Victorian team is off to a flying start and most of their surfers again won through today. Their only casualty to date was Gippsland surfer Derek Bassed who unfortunately dislocated his shoulder on his opening ride in his open round one heat at Bells yesterday. In severe pain Bassed had to be assisted from the water and he's unlikely to be able to compete in his round two heat tomorrow.


The events finals are expected to run on Friday and Saturday.

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