ASP World No. 8 Melanie Redman-Carr (Western Australia) captured her 11th ASP World Qualifying Series victory, winning the Women’s 5-Star Mr Price Pro world surfing event at Durban’s New Pier in South Africa this weekend.
Defeating current World No. 4 Rebecca Woods (New South Wales, Australia) in a nail-biting final, Redman-Carr earned R28,000, simultaneously jumping to No. 1 on the WQS ratings ahead of equal third place finisher Jessi Miley Dyer (Australia).
Sitting in second position for most of the Final, Carr steadily chipped away at Wood’s impressive 7.00 and 6.50 point rides (both out of a possible ten), posting two 6.00’s before scoring an excellent 8.17, for a series of fast, slicing turns; sliding her tail out for buckets of spray, to snag victory in the final minute.
“I knew it would be hard to catch Rebecca because they weren’t throwing out big scores today; you had to really work hard, even for a 7.00. I haven’t been surfing much at home and I feel like I improved with every heat and was feeling really confident by the Final," Carr said.
A sixteen year ASP World Tour campaigner Carr, 31, finished at World No. 2 on the ratings in 2006 and after a somewhat disappointing start to this year, will be surfing both the ASP World Tour and World Qualifying Series in order to requalify in 2008.
“I’ve had a couple of average results this year and I’d like to do better. We haven’t had the greatest waves so it’s been a bit disappointing. I want to requalify on WQS ‘cause I haven’t done that well on the World Tour and then next year, I can decide if I want to carry on with it or not."
Despite securing an early heat lead with a big in the pocket turn, followed by a controlled floater and finishing off with a white water re-entry to score a good 7.00 point ride, Woods was piped at the post, taking home a second place finish and R14,000.
“Coming into this event I was 11th on the WQS and I was thinking 'you really need to do something right now!' so the pressure was on. Obviously a win would have been nicer, but that happens and watching Mel get that last wave I was like 'aw no!' but you know, she rips and she deserved to win," Woods said, her result sending her to fifth on the WQS ratings.
2006 Mr Price Pro runner-up Jessi Miley Dyer (Australia) and ISA World Champion Julia Christian (USA) finished equal third respectively, both surfers earning R11,900 for their efforts.
Semifinal number one saw Miley Dyer on the back foot for most of the heat, Redman-Carr scoring a 7.50 with some good, well controlled off the tops and an air-drop floater on her first wave. Taking priority, the Mr Price Pro Champion used it to her advantage, holding Dyer off a potentially high scoring wave in the final minutes, forcing her to settle for equal third.
Semifinal number two saw the lead change hands a number of times, Woods posting a solid 7.00 point ride leaving Christian needing a 6.18, with 2 minutes remaining. South Africa’s Nikita Robb (East London) was the highest placed South African girl, reaching the quarterfinals where she was narrowly defeated by Woods, needing just a 2.06 to take the win. Robb finished equal 5th, earning R5950.
The only other South African that advanced through yesterday’s earlier rounds World No. 12 Rosy Hodge (East London), was edged out by Christian and Robb in the Round of 12, finishing her Mr Price Pro campaign with an equal ninth placing.
Melanie Redman-Carr, AUS 14.50
Rebecca Woods, AUS 13.50
Melanie Redman-Carr, AUS 12.93
Jessi Miley-Dyer, AUS 10.36
Rebecca Woods, AUS 11.67
Julia Christian, USA 8.67