Ocean Isle’s Harris captures Belmont Pro; Richards third

The Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) 1-Star Fins Pro Junior was decided on Sunday afternoon in rising conditions in Belmar, NJ. With waves pumping in from Hurricane Nadine, Sunday’s semi finals and finals produced ideal conditions for the competitors.

Myrtle Beach surfer Addison Miles competed in the junior’s division, and after advancing through the first 3 rounds, found himself competing in a semi final heat with Garden City’s Cam Richards.

Richards got a slow start in the semi finals before whipping into back to back winning waves, picking up a 5.70 followed by an 8.50 to put the heat away and move into the finals.

Miles found several small waves during the heat, but was unable to rack up the points needed to move on, picking up a 2.43 and 2.53 to fall just over 3 points short of advancing to the finals.

Staying in the water following his semi final heat in the junior’s division, Richards was joined by the other semi finalists for the men’s division, which would include Evan Thompson, whom Richards would be surfing against in the finals of the junior’s division.

Thompson got out to an early lead in the men’s semis with an 8 point wave. Richards followed with a 5.10 wave. Hawaii’s Kalani David threw a huge air to put up a 9.40 score to move Richards into third place in the heat and the Garden City surfer wasn’t able to recover, putting together a string of 1 point waves.

“This is my best result in an ASP event,” Richards said. “I’ve done well in amateur events but this is a good confidence booster to start off the new season. I haven’t done very well in the Pro Junior events yet, so hopefully a result here will help my seed.”

Kure Beach, NC local longboarder Tony Silvagni won the longboard division, picking up a check for $2,000 for his effort.

In the finals of the junior division, Richards opened the 25 minute period, catching the wave of the set and turning it into a 6 point wave to take the early lead.

Ocean Isle, NC’s Knox Harris answered the call with a 7.33 point wave to take the two wave combined score lead.

It was only a matter of time though before Jacksonville, NC’s Evan Thompson put up a series of waves to take the lead, while Richards put up his own set to move them into first and second places respectively, halfway through the finals.

Richards caught several waves to finish out the heat, but wasn’t able to put together anything higher than a 1.67 point wave. Meanwhile, Harris caught the winner with nearly two minutes remaining to post  a 7.57 single wave score, and combined 14.90 score to beat the second place finisher Thompson, and third place Richards.

Harris takes the $2,000 check back to Ocean Isle beach, and Richards returns to Garden City with a $600 check.

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