Seven Australian riders remain in contention for the crown after a big day of action at the Mike Stewart Pipeline Invitational.
Three and a half rounds were completed on the opening day of the contest, held in near-perfect 6 to 10 foot conditions at Pipeline, Hawaii.
Standouts of the day include Australia’s Lachlan Cramsie who scored the second highest total of the day (14.66 pts) on his way to a round three win.
Cramsie will now take on countryman Lewy Finnegan in round four along with Frenchman Maxime Castilo and Tahiti’s Julien Miremont.
Australia’s Dave Winchester was also impressive in his round three heat after scoring 8.33 points for a massive invert at Backdoor. Winchester went on to win the heat with a total of 13.66 points to progress through to round four.
Six-time world champion Guilherme Tamega showed he is still a force to be reckoned with after winning his round three heat with a total of 14.17 points.
Puerto Rican grommet Abner D’Arce (pictured) was unfazed by his older competitors, scoring the highest ride of the day (9.33 points) with a deep tube ride.
The 16-year-old will compete for a place in round four when the contest is expected to start again early tomorrow.
Some of the big surprises of the day include Australian underground charger Garth McGregor who progressed through to round four while Cronulla legend and late call-up Christian “Rissole” Riguccini also shocked many to make it through to round three.
The day finished with the highly entertaining stand up bodyboarding final in which local shredder Sammy Morretino took home first place honours ahead of Mack Crilley, Alan Lamphere and Jamie O’Brien.
Morretino was also a standout in the earlier rounds of the day, however was knocked out in a tough round two heat.
Day two of the Mike Stewart Pipeline Invitational is now on standby for Sunday, February 28 with a call to be made early in the morning.
Click here a complete list of heat results.
Feature image by Alex Perez