Ex-PE local (and current Perth resident) Jaryd Mason, is our man on the spot for the Drug Aware Pro at Margaret River. Here's his pre-comp take on the event:
By Jaryd Mason
Margaret River, Western Australia...it’s a place of untouched beauty and raw power. Surfers Point is located in the small seaside town of Prevelly in The Margaret River Region of Australia’s wild South-West. That’s the bottom left of Aus and one of the most isolated regions in the world. Strangely enough Surfers Point shares it’s latitude with Port Elizabeth. So if you had to be in the water out at 6 pillars, in PE you’d be on about the same latitude as Surfers Point, Margaret River, Western Australia (33.97®S). The region gets some pretty juicy South Ocean swell all year around. The weather in Margaret River is ever changing, it can be calm and offshore in the morning and howling onshore an hour later. It can have rain, sun, wind, heat and cold, all in one day. Sound familiar? The conditions for the contest will change from heat to heat, which I think will make the Margs Pro one of the most testing events on tour. Rumour has it that a certain wave called “The Box” has been selected as an alternate venue for the event.
Surfers Point – Surfer’s is a powerful reef-point break which picks up heaps of swell. The left is generally longer than the right. When it gets really big you can pretty much bank on going left on most waves. Expect some pretty big days in the contest window, the forecast is looking decent for the first few days and the wind seems to be playing along as well. I don’t think they will run the men’s event if it’s under 4ft. Expect some Southern Ocean juice!
The Box – Um...have you watched a surfing DVD in the past decade?
Who’s gonna win?
To be honest, I’ve been speaking to some mates over here and nobody really knows who the favourites are. The usual suspects like Kelly, Mick and Parko will always be in the mix, but this one’s wide open. Here are some of my favourites to win The Margaret River Drug Aware Pro 2014 (No particular order):
1. Taj Burrow
TB grew up in the town of Yallingup, about a 20 minute drive up Caves Road from Margaret River. There has been a lot of media hype around him surfing in his home event. TB has done really well in the prime events at Margaret River. I saw Taj surfing his local down in Yallingup this past weekend. After his surf he took a few photos with some kids on the beach and walked across the road to his house, the comforts of home. TB is surely one of the favourites?!
2. Kelly Slater
Kelly has also enjoyed past success at Margaret River. His below par result on The Goldie will give him some extra spice to win this event. Oh, and he may or may not have some added incentive to win this event due to...”sponsorship reasons”. Kelly, up to his mind games again and this time he is playing all of us!
3. JJ Florence
Surfer’s has the power and ferocity of a North Shore break. If the conditions play along I think John John will have a big role in this contest. He had a shocker of a result on The Goldie so I’m sure he will want to do better out West. So if it’s big, expect some big things from JJF!
4. Nat Young
I have a strange feeling Nat will do well in this event. He got down to the South-West a little earlier than most surfers and I have a feeling the wave suits him. I think that his preparation may pay off! He is my darkhorse pick for this event.
5. Jordy Smith
Oh the patriotism! I’ll be down there this weekend cheering Jordy on! I’ve got my SA flag washed and ready! If conditions are firing I think Jordy will be winning heaps of heats and hopefully he’ll take the event. I can just picture him displacing huge amounts of water with his backhand gouges! C’mon Jordy! It’s Lekker, when it’s Lekker bru!
Margaret River is back on tour after a 20 year break, this contest is going to be a cracker! I’m going to try send ML some updates when I’m down there. I hope it will make The Margaret River Drug Aware Pro a bit more interesting and I get to share some stoke with you.
Think you know who'll win? Then enter the ML Fantasy Surfer comp here, and score yourself an insane Billabong hamper worth R1600 (Boardies, Tshirt, cap, deck grip and leash).