Image Caption: Daniel Redman of Umdloti has earned the final spot into the Mr Price Pro Ballito after winning the KZNSA Championships at the weekend. © Mr Price/ Cestari
The Mr Price Pro Ballito round five of nine on the 2012 ASP Prime Tour kicks off from July 2-8, 2012 igniting the explosive hunt for valuable ASP ratings points as pro surfers knuckle down at the season’s critical halfway mark on the ASP World Tour, in the hope of securing their spot on the elite ASP World Championship Tour in 2013.
Renowned as a high performance wave, offering deep barrel rides and plenty of scoring opportunity for high risk maneuvers, Willards Beach (also known as Surfers) is expected to turn on some classic conditions next week thanks to the prevailing south west swell and the early morning north-westerly winds enjoyed at this time of year.
One man who has spent more time in the barrel in Ballito than just about anyone else at this year’s event, is recently crowned KwaZulu-Natal Open Champion Daniel Redman, from Umdloti, who earned the eighth and final slot into the prestigious Mr Price Pro Ballito trials scheduled to take place early on Monday morning.
“It’s been a long process and something I’ve been working towards all year so I’m so stoked to have made it into the trials,” Redman said. “I found out a week before the contest starts that I got in and there’s a lot of work left to do to qualify for the main event so I’m only really halfway through.”
The KwaZulu-Natal Surf Riders Association (KZNSA) held five contests, culminating with the Natal Open Championships awarding the winner the final slot into the trials.
“We are very proud that Daniel Redman whom hails from the KZN North coast and represents the local surfing community, has won this series and the Natal Championships,” Brendan Callaghan President of KZNSA said. “We are most grateful to Mr Price for allocating a trials’ spot to KZNSA and creating a platform for one of our local surfers to compete for a spot in this prestigious event.”
Placing no less than second, Redman advanced through five grueling rounds of competition to win the final, earning a spot into what will prove to be the most critical of trials.
“There are a lot of great surfers in the trials and all eight of us deserve to be there so it’s not going to be easy,” Redman explained. “If I advance through the trials then I still have to negotiate the early rounds of competition and that’s where the fun really begins.”
A former World Qualifying series campaigner, Redman enjoyed eight years on the international circuit securing his career best win at the O’Neill Deep Blue ASP Prime in the Maldives in 2005, the same year he came close to qualifying for the elite World Championship Tour.
“It’s been a whole year since I last competed at international level so I am excited to get back into the water and surf against the guys at that level,” Redman said. “I miss surfing against the best surfers in the world and I’m looking forward to the challenge of competing for my place in the main event.”
Redman joins fellow trialists David Van Zyl (Dbn), Matthew Bromley (CT), Klee Strachan (SKZN), David Weare (Dbn), Michael February (CT), Casey Grant (Scottburgh) and Davey Brand (CT).
The eight local trialists will compete in two, four man heats with the top two from each heat advancing into a four-man final. First and second place finalists will advance into the main event.
The Mr Price Pro Ballito includes an action packed beach festival including beach entertainment; extreme sports, dedicated children’s programs and a lifestyle and retail area that provides plenty of daytime fun. The ever-popular Mr Price Pro Music concerts will take place on the evening of 6 and 7 July at Salt Rock at no cost to festival-goers.