World champion charging towards title
SURFING: Coolum's newly-crowned world junior champion Isabella Nichols continued her impressive form yesterday to book her place in the latter stages of the Telstra Stores Tweed Coast Pro.
She scored a round-high 16 points (out of 20) to charge into round three and joins Buderim's Dimity Stoyle who, is searching for re-qualification to the Championship Tour.
"Priority really came into play in that heat," Nichols said. "I wanted to catch as many waves as I could, but I feel that sometimes the priority system works against me.
"I held it for the majority of the heat and I got really picky.
"Fortunately, I was able to get that final wave. Hopefully I can keep the ball rolling throughout the rest of 2016."
The event is Nichols' first World Surf League Qualifying Series event for the year. It is worth 1000 ratings points.
It's hoped the 18-year-old can back up her breakout 2015 season by gaining qualification to the Championship Tour this year.
Stoyle will face off against France's Maud Le Car who has already notched up two QS event wins in 2016. Le Car moved comfortably into round three with an 11.75 heat.
"I feel confident in my surfing and I'm really just enjoying every heat at the moment," she said. "I'm just trying to do my best out there, not worry about the other competitors and focus on my own performance."
Coasters Vittoria Farmer also progressed to round three but Jaleesa Vincent was eliminated.
Meanwhile, several Coast men progressed to round four.
Jack Duggan, Connor Lyons, Dale Lovelock, Reef Heazlewood, Harry Bryant and Kai Hing impressed in their round three heats but Kelly Norris bowed out.