Conditions were pristine as the second day of competition got underway today at the Taiwan Open of Surfing hosted by Taitung County in clean 3 foot waves at Jinzun Harbour. With two days left to complete the event, it was another action packed day with 30 heats surfed across the Men's and Women's LQS events and the Men's QS1,500.
The Men's LQS continued through the final 6 Heats of Round 2 and into Round 3 which was completed today. Picking up where he left off yesterday was two-time World Longboard Champion, Taylor Jensen (USA) who posted a 12.90 in his heat to move through Round 3 into the Quarterfinals.
"You really had to wait for the good ones in that heat," Jensen said. "I'm really enjoying having a contest with the shortboard QS1,500 guys. Today was crazy to watch, Garrett (Parkes) especially was killing it. I shortboard a lot so it's cool taking inspiration from those guys, especially before a heat on a longboard."
Reigning two-time World Longboard Champion Harley Ingleby (AUS) was in complete control of his Round 3 heat until the final minute when Edouard Delpero (FRA) took of on a set wave and performed a number of carves and nose ride manoeuvres through to the beach to score a heat high single wave score of 8.00 (out of a possible 10) to take the heat win. Ingleby finished close behind in second and still progresses to the Quarterfinals.
"I had a pretty good feeling he was going to get the score on that one," Ingleby said. "There wasn't many great waves during that heat and he ended up getting one of the better ones and surfed it really well. I was happy with the way I surfed, and I've still made it to the Quarterfinals so I'm stoked."
The Quarterfinals were also decided for the Taiwan Open of Surfing Men's QS1,500 which surfed through Rounds 3 and 4 today.
After a long year on the Qualifying Series (QS), Perth Standlick (AUS) was able to find some of the form he has carried in previous years to dominate heat one of Round 4. He progresses to the Quarterfinals with young Nolan Rapoza (USA) who snuck through over Nic Hdez by 0.10 of a point.
"It feels good, "Standlick said. "It's a feeling I haven't had all year, I've been struggling a bit this year so it's nice to find a rhythm and make a few heats. It changes a lot out there, depending on the tide, I'll have to see what it's doing before my next heat and make a plan then."
In what was without a doubt the heat of the contest so far, event stand out Garrett Parkes (AUS) took on Gabriel Farias (BRA) and Australasian Qualifying Series No. 1 and 2, Dale Lovelock (AUS) and Jarred Hickel (AUS). Farias and Hickel dominated the heat until Parkes found two long right-handers in the second half, and went to town on them, solidifying himself a spot in the Quarters along with Hickel.
"It was really hard at the start," Parkes said. "It has dropped out a bit but I managed to find a few fun ones, I'm loving it. I wanted to get a right under my belt at the start but couldn't find one then managed to sneak a couple in late. It's been a really bad competitive year for me - so it's great to make some heats, especially here in Taiwan."
Heat 3 of Round 4 was another close one, and wasn't without controversy after Shane Campbell (AUS) scored an interference late in the heat to loose his top two spot. The lead was then taken in the dying minutes with Takumi Nakamura (JPN) scoring a heat high 7.40. He now progresses to the Quarterfinals with Countrymen Takumi Yasui (JPN) Yukio Ogawa (JPN) and Yuji Nishi (JPN).
"I didn't think I could get the score," Nakamura said. "I'm enjoying the waves here so I'm glad I can surf again. I really like Taiwan, good food and good waves,"
To complete what was another epic day of 30 heats the Women's LQS got underway starting in Round 1 and having the Semifinals decided by the days end. Competitors that found themselves in the Semifinals included last year's event Champion Chelsea Williams (AUS) Nava Young (AUS), Kathryn Hughs (AUS) and Crystal Walsh(HAW). Williams was stoked to finally get competition underway after two days of playing spectator.
"It looked really fun from the beach," Williams said. "When I got out there I found it hard, it was sectioning and bumpy on the face, but I got through so that's what matters I guess. It's been a long few days waiting for that heat, I've been free surfing a lot and just trying to stay busy, it was good to finally get in the water with a jersey on."
Tune in tomorrow to see who will be crowned Champion in Men's and Women's LQS event and Men's Champion in the QS1,500 at the Taiwan Open of Surfing. Watch live at worldsurfleague.com and on the WSL App.