Joel Parkinson is the number one ranked surfer in the world. Image courtesy of adelaidenow.com.au
Gold Coast surfer Joel Parkinson carries additional expectation going into the season opening Quiksilver Pro on the Gold Coast starting on March 2, having being crowned world champion for the first time with his win at the Pipeline Masters in Hawaii last year. Although the 31 year-old has already his ‘local’ event twice before, this is the first time that he has gone in as the top seed.
Best mate and fellow two time winner Mick Fanning is considered to be one of the other leading contenders and he will be bidding to build on the dominance of Australian surfers at Snapper Rocks. Taj Burrow’s victory twelve months ago – to go with his 2nd in 2011 and win in 2010 - was the eighth time in 11 years that an Aussie had lifted the trophy. American Kelly Slater is the only foreign wave rider to have tasted success in the ASP event, with the 11 time world champion successful in 2006, 2008 and 2011.While Slater looks the most likely foreigner to contend on the Gold Coast, Brazilian Adriano de Souza will also have high hopes having finished as runner-up here in 2009 and 2012.
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