Pablo Gutierrez Rocks Day 1 Of 2012 ASP Protest Vendee Pro

This morning eight heats of the 2012 Protest Vendee Pro were surfed at the secondary site of Les Dunes in choppy 4-5 foot waves , before the decision was taken by event officials to move back to the main site of La Sauzaie for the rest of the day.

Luis Eyre.  Photo: Aquashot/aspeurope.comThe opening day of the 2012 ASP 3-Star Protest Vendee Pro ran through the first two rounds of competition on two different sites.

La Sauzaie turned on with the incoming tide in the afternoon offering cleaner 4-5Ft lefts and rights on the famous reef of Vendee.

Pablo Gutierrez was the in-form surfer of the day displaying speed, power and flow, three qualities highly recommended to impress the judges in competition. The Spanish veteran impressed in the difficult conditions by powering his way through a heat against younger competitors.

"This morning the conditions were difficult with a little bit of size but an onshore wind," said Pablo. "It was kind of a lottery out there, you could either surf good waves or not find anything at all. The paddle out was pretty exhausting it took us about 10mn to get out there, so it was definitely extreme!"

With a solid backhand and fronthand attack on the mid-sized swell on offer at the back-up venue of Les Dunes, Pablo Gutierrez managed to score the highest single wave score of the event so far, an impressive 8.67 out of 10, as well as the highest heat total of the event with 16.57 points.

"I had a good left of about 4-5ft that let me do two big manoeuvers on a clean open face and it was scored a 8.67. Then I had the whole 10mn paddling act all over again, and I managed to find a righthander that didn’t look like it was going to offer anything special. I started with a good cutback and it reformed in the inside section so I got to place three off-the-top manoeuvers that scored 7.9. So I guess I was pretty lucky this morning !"

A semi-retired surfer with a lot of experience on the ASP European Tour that he’s been surfing from the past fifteen years, Pablo Gutierrez prefers to not look ahead to a complicated Round 3 match-up against Justin Mujica, another seasoned European surfer.

The 2012 Protest Vendee Pro is scheduled from April 19-22.

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