Day one of the Surfers Rescue Port Stephens Pro QS 1,000 kicked off in the early hours of this morning. Competitors in the first round of the men’s and women’s divisions were faced with inconsistent, small conditions, which added another challenging element to their Qualifying Series campaign.
A south easterly wind and 2-3 foot waves persisted throughout today’s competition. After a few early walk through heats and a slow start, the competition revved up with Central Coast’s Shane Holmes delivering a powerful heat against fellow Central Coast competitors, showcasing his fierce drive and keen eye for the prize.
Local competitors displayed their knowledge of the area by dominating their respective rounds. Mike Clayton-Brown locked in the highest-scored wave of his heat with a 7.83. Joshua Stretton won his heat with a 1.16 lead against fellow Australian competitors Bodhie Williams and Joshua Levey, and Jasmine Sampson commenced her 2023 Qualifying Series campaign in her home town by locking down a total heat score of 8.34 which secured herself a spot in tomorrow’s women’s round two.
Jasmine Sampson detailed her strategy for this year’s Qualifying Series campaign and her delight to kick it off at her local break.
“I’m really excited that the QS is here. It’s great to be able to surf my local beach and show the other competitors and tourists that come to watch the event, how great my backyard is.”
“It is so important for my own campaign and strategy in 2023 to have an event in my backyard. It offers me the opportunity to use my local experience and years of surfing the breaks as an advantage in my heats and I want to keep that momentum up with the following events,” said Sampson.
After walking away from the Camplify Great Lakes Pro QS 3,000 in third place, Coffs Harbour’s Rosie Smart dominated round one and displayed her hunger for the win against Bonnie Hills and Willow Hardy. Holly Williams, the weapon from Queensland’s Sunshine Coast locked in the highest scored wave in the women’s division with a 6.83, after driving through the inconsistent swell with powerful motions.
The Vissla NSW Pro Surf Series was developed for Australian surfers to gain ranking points and prize money in the WSL Qualifying Series. The series also creates a NSW coastal road trip for all to explore the variety of waves, visit local communities and enjoy NSW surfing culture.
The NSW Government proudly supports the Vissla NSW Pro Surf Series 2023 through its tourism and major events agency, Destination NSW.
The Surfers Rescue 24/7 Port Stephens Pro is available to watch on the 28th February and 1st of March, thanks to Mad Mex via live webcast through worldsurfleague.com, the WSL App, 7plus, mySurf.tv, Kayo Sports, and Surfing NSW socials.
Vissla NSW Pro Surf Series 2023 Event Schedule
Event 1: Camplify Great Lakes Pro QS3000: Tuesday 21st – Friday 24th Feb
Event 2: Surfers Rescue 24/7 Port Stephens Pro QS1000 – Monday 27th Feb: Wednesday 1st March
Event 3: Mad Mex Maroubra Pro QS1000: Friday 3rd – Sunday 5th March
Event 4: Men’s Vissla Central Coast Pro presented by Mad Mex QS3000, Women’s Sisstrevolution Central Coast Pro presented by Mad Mex: Monday 13th – Saturday 18th March
The 2023 Vissla NSW Pro Surf Series will be proudly supported by the NSW Government through its tourism and major events agency, Destination NSW. The series will also be proudly supported by Vissla, Sisstrevolution, Destination Sydney Surrounds, Randwick City Council, Central Coast Council, Mid Coast Council, Port Stephens Council, Barrington Coast, Mad Mex, Camplify, Storage King, Avoca Beach Hotel, Southend Hotel, PRD Real Estate, Surfers Rescue 24/7, #NoTxtNoWrecks, WSL and Surfing NSW.