Avoca dished up another day of throaty and dredgy conditions as the Vissla Central Coast Pro pres. by Slimes saw another day of men’s action.
Having finished second in the Central Coast Pro in 2016 and growing up surfing 20-minutes north of Avoca, Shane Holmes (Shelly Beach, NSW) showed how well-versed he is in tricky beach break conditions, bagging himself a round four victory. Holmes remained busy over the duration of the heat, surfing several lefthanders on one bank, before splitting away from his rivals to surf a righthander on an opposing bank. The game-plan paid off for Holmes as he notched up an excellent 8.25 scoring wave and gained the edge over his opposition to cement a spot in round five.
“At the beginning of the heat I made the plan to sit on the left and lock in one score before paddling down the beach and waiting for a good righthander,” said Holmes. “I knew that if you could get one righthander on the southern side of the contest area then there was the potential for good scores, so I just used that as my game plan and it worked thankfully.”
Having spent the last few years only competing sporadically, Jordin Watson (Culburra Beach, NSW) made his return to elite competition thanks to the support from his local Culburra Beach Boardriders, following their victory at the nudie Australian Boardriders Battle. Watson seemed to revel in the opportunity, moving through round three following a heat with his brother Ty, before backing it up with a victory in round four. Watson posted an impressive 7.25 wave score in the latter round to claim victory in the heat and book himself a spot into round five.
“This is my first time doing contests again following a bit of a break and I’m just stoked to see some swell,” said Watson. “There’s a lot of rips out there and I think most of the guys in the heat were sitting on four-point rides. I got lucky at the end of the heat where I got one good wave that allowed me to open up and do two good turns. Following Culburra winning the Boardriders Battle, a few of the guys said they’d back me to enter a few contests again. I’m frothing to give it another crack, especially with my brother Ty.”
Having had less than stellar results in the recent Vissla Sydney Surf Pro and Newcastle Surfest 6000 rated events, Qualifying Series veteran Nic Squires (Wollongong, NSW) came into the Vissla Central Coast Pro with only one goal – to win. Squires, made good on the goal he made with himself, nailing a near-perfect 9.90 wave score for a variety of mammoth backside snaps in round four to leave his opposition chasing a combination of scores to snatch away his lead.
“I think that wave helped dictate the score a bit. It just let me do three clean turns which were almost uncommon today,” said Squires. “I wanted to sit wide and have a bit of a bank to myself and thankfully I did for the beginning of the heat. I just wanted to stay away from the rip as well, as I knew you could get stuck in it. I was pretty disappointed in my results in the QS6000 events, so I really have come here to try and take it out.”
The final day of the Vissla Central Coast Pro pres. by Slimes Boardstore will kick off at Avoca from 8 am tomorrow.
The elite five-day World Surf League (WSL) Qualifying Series (QS) 1,000 rated competition will take place from 7 – 11 March 2018.
Over 200 male and female surfers will compete in the event, which will see over 18 different countries represented in both divisions.
Previous event champions include CT surfer and local Adrian Buchan, former World Championship Tour surfer Justine Dupont (France) and former US Open of Surfing champion Hiroto Ohhara (Japan).
Local Central Coast competitors in the event include Lennox Chell (Avoca), Caleb Tancred (Avoca), Shane Holmes (Shelly Beach), Troy and Jamie Skillin (Norah Head), Kirra-Belle Olsson (Avoca) and Molly Picklum (Shelly Beach). 

Event dates and locations:
Event One: Carve Pro
Location: Maroubra Beach
Date: January 18th – 21st, 2018
Event Two: Mothernest Tweed Coast Pro
Location: Cabarita Beach
Date: January 31st – February 4th, 2018
Event Three: Vissla Great Lakes Pro pres. by D'Blanc
Location: Boomerang Beach
Date: February 7th – 11th, 2018
Event Four: Vissla Central Coast Pro pres. by Slimes Boardstore
Location: Avoca Beach
Date: March 7th – 11th, 2018
The Vissla NSW Pro Surf Series was developed for Australian and international surfers to gain ranking points and prize money on 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 2018 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, Randwick City Council, Central Coast Council, Destination Tweed, Mid Coast Council and Tourism, NBN, Toyota, Coastalwatch, World Surf League and Surfing NSW.