IT HAS been an exciting year for Gold Coast surfing and now it comes down to a nail biting finish.
Just ten days ago local sweetheart, Stephanie Gilmore, was crowned with her sixth world title in Maui after the closest world title race finish on record.
This week could see another Gold Coast favourite, Mick Fanning, follow suite and win his fourth world title.
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The last event of the year in the men’s ASP surfing tour – the infamous Pipeline Masters is just about to start and it is a three-man race to the finish line.
Sitting at number two in the ranks, Fanning is sandwiched between Brazilian charger Gabriel Medina and the ever-ready Kelly Slater (USA) who has won a staggering 11 world titles.
Little separates the three but the stakes are high – bragging rights for the capital of the surfing world are at stake. For as long as surfing has been a professional sport, Australia and the USA have dominated the ranks – particularly Hawaii and the Gold Coast.
The depth of our local talent combined with our lifestyle, weather and beach conditions give us a proud claim to fame in the surfing world but there is an emerging surfing nation chomping at the bit to take that honour from us. According to those in the know, it is only a matter of time before they succeed.
Brazil is surfing crazy, and the skilful and fearless new breed of surfers rising up over there means that our dominance in the world surfing ranks is ready to be challenged. Gabriel Medina – who is good mates with soccer royalty Neymar – is already on his way to superstar status in South America and is ripe for the plucking to become the first Brazilian world surfing champion.
Of course, Medina has to hold off Fanning and Slater before that will become a reality. Luckily, Fanning has already proven he has what it takes to win under this kind of pressure – he won the world championship on the final day of Pipe last year.
As a proud surfing city, we need to get behind Mick Fanning and show him our support – let’s keep the Gold Coast on top of the surfing world for a bit longer yet.
With a massive swell reported to be heading for the islands it is shaping up to be an epic contest and you can tune in to watch live heats online or on Fuel TV.
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