Mr Price Team Rider Gary van Wierengen

Mr Price Team Rider Gary van Wierengen is the first surfer from the trials to secure himself a position in the Round of 192 in the 2007 Mr Price Pro. We caught up with him after his final trials heat, which he blasted apart with two excellent rides of 8.00 and 7.83 .

CR: So Gary, congratulations on making it through to the main event, you``ve got to be stoked with that?
GvW: Definitely! The goal I set for myself was to make it in to the main event, and I``ve just done that so I``m very stoked. Mr Price have been supporting me, so I want to support them by getting us much coverage for them as I can.

CR: Now, the conditions out there were a little small, but you were still racking up some excellent scores.
GvW: Ja, it``s not ideal conditions but still, if you catch the right waves and can get enough speed on them, you can do the big moves that impress the judges and get the scores that you want.

CR: Do you think it``s because you``re familiar with this wave?
GvW: I don``t know, I don``t really surf here that much anymore, mainly because of the crowds. I live out of town but I work in Durban, so after work I like to drive and find somewhere to surf out there.

CR: You``ve been seeded into the first heat tomorrow, against guys like Shea Lopez and Keegan Nel. How are you feeling about going up against those guys?
GvW: I``m feeling confident, hey. We``re all out there together, the four of us in the heat, and conditions are the same for us. You just have to get the right waves and you can do it.

CR: Well you``re off to a good start in this event, but how has the rest of the year been for you so far?
GvW: It``s been good actually. I had some quarter final results in the PST events, and I got a fourth at SA Champs recently, so I``m stoked with the year so far.

CR: So is this the start of another competitive charge for you? Any international contests on the cards?
GvW: Nah, I``ll surf the South African events but that was about it. When I was younger and I felt like travelling around the world and seeing other things, then I was into it.

CR: Thanks Gary, and good luck for the rest of the event.
GvW: Thanks man.

Ricky Basnett Interview

Ricky Basnett is nothing short of a national hero - the man who broke South Africa’s 28 year ‘flat spell’ by becoming the first South African to triumph at the Mr Price Pro since the days of Shaun Thomson. This is what ‘Bazza’ has to say about the contest he calls ‘my event’, surfing and life on the WCT…

Gary van Wieringen
Age: 33
From: Durban

Greg Emslie
Age: 31
From: East London, South Africa

Stephen Jake Friedman
Age: 21
From: Umhlanga, Durban

Tammy Lee Smith
Age: 21
From: Chakas Rock, Balitto

Lungani Memani
Age: 18
From: Port Alfred

Stacey Guy
Age: 23
From: Melkbos