23 June 2019, Bali – Indonesia: In an exciting finale to the four-day REnextop Asian Surfing Tour’s (RAST) first stop of 2019 at Padma Beach in Bali yesterday, Indonesia’s Rio Waida (Men’s Shortboard), Brazil’s Hayanna Iguchi (Women’s Shortboard), Japan’s Masaya Tsukamoto (Men’s Longboard) and Natsumi Taoko (Women’s Longboard) all claimed wins on a Saturday afternoon to go home with cash, Carver Skateboards, and the points lead in their respective divisions.
In a rematch of last year’s RAST Bali Men’s Shortboard Final, which was held at Halfway Kuta Beach, it was Bali’s Rio Waida taking on Lakey Peak’s Oney Anwar in a grudge match which went Rio’s way this year.
“Last year Oney really killed me in the final, so this time the only thing on my mind was to beat him,” said Rio after the final. “It was kind of tricky conditions out there, high tide and closing out, so I think I did a pretty good job of finding the good waves and winning. For sure I know this wave better than Oney, as I surf it all the time, so I just stuck to my game plan of only going left and smashing every section. So stoked that got me the win!”
Rio posted the highest single wave score of the entire event in his semifinal against Mega Artana, a 9.17 (out of a possible 10 points), then went on to earn another excellent score of 8.00 in the final against Oney, leaving no question of his level of ability in the Padma beach breaks.
In the Women’s Shortboard Division it was Brazil’s Hayanna Iguchi that put an end to Hawaiian Brittany Penaroza’s dominant performance final. Brittany peaked in her semifinal against Bali’s Kailani Johnson, earning an excellent 8.83 score, the highest in the Women’s Shortboard Division, with her second highest score a 7.83 for a whopping 16.66 total heat score.
But in the final, it was Hayanna who found the best waves and unleashed her ferocious backhand for a pair of 7’s, where Brittany couldn’t seem find an open face on which to work and ended with her highest wave a 4.67.
“It still hasn’t completely kicked in that I’ve won, said an ecstatic Hayanna. “I’m excited and humbled and thankful, as I’ve been working really hard to win. Last year I kind of stopped competing, because I didn’t really have rhythm and wasn’t into it. But then I started working hard to change that…and it’s all paid off now. I’m over the moon! This has been such an amazing event, as they got us out in in the best conditions, so we got amazing waves which we don’t usually get. I’m grateful to the judges, to REnextop ,and to the Padma Boys for having us, thanks everyone!” she added.
The Men’s Longboard Division was a tight race down to the horn between Japan’s Masaya Tsukamoto and the Philippines, Marven Abat. Masaya jumped into the lead with his first wave and left Marven playing catchup, but on the last wave just before time ran out Marven caught his best wave and waited on the sand to hear the score, but it fell just short and the win stayed with Masaya. The final score was Masaya at 11.93 points to Marven’s 11.37 points.
“The wave conditions the whole event were awesome,” said Masaya. “I’ve never surfed here at Padma before, this was my first time. But it’s a lot like my home beach break actually. I’m so happy to get the win today, and it’s helping for my confidence as I’m 20 and for me this is my last year to try and get on the World Longboard Tour. I’m hoping to do more RAST events in the future for sure, as it’s a lot of fun and good practice.”
In the Women’s Longboard Division it was previous World Longboard Tour pro Natsumi Taoka from Japan easily getting the win over Indonesia’s Dhea Natasya, who has only been surfing longboards for about a year now. Dhea gave it a good effort and did great to get through to the final, but after Natsumi scored a 7.33 and then added an excellent 8.0 for a final score of 15.33 it was all over for Dhea’s whose final score was just 7.50.
Natsumi is last year’s RAST Series Women’s Longboard Champion and has jumped out into the lead once again. “I’m so happy to win today,” said Natsumi.
“It was hard work out there sometimes, but I like big waves so much better than small waves, so it was really fun…great for longboarding. I really love these RAST contests because they are totally different from our Japanese contests. Everybody is so friendly and I’ve met so many new friends at these events, so I always have a great time.”
Head Judge Keenan Roxburgh was pleased as could be with the results and the event overall, saying “We definitely saved the best for last. We had such varying conditions, like big close to closeout sections for some heats in the first day and the second and then more controlled conditions on the last two days. Today we saw three excellent rides, high excellent actually, so it’s always exciting when we see that in our final day, as we want to the best surfers doing the highest performances and winning. For a judging panel, that proves we’ve done our job correctly. We had excellent rides in Women’s Shortboarding, Men’s Shortboarding and Women’s Longboarding, so really across the board a really good show. We picked the eyes out of it with the conditions and made sure to put the right divisions out at the right time. Big thanks to REnextop, the Padma Boys, and the ASC for such a well-organized event. It was a smooth and well-oiled machine, and the judging panel was super solid… well done to all!”
The RAST 1 Padma Event was broadcast live each day, and all the scoring was on-line via Live Heats, so the viewing audience could tune in and enjoy the action and the information and entertainment provided by Lorca Lueras, Matt George, Johnny Uluwatu, and DB from Hainan giving the Chinese commentary. Check out:
https://www.facebook.com/pg/REnextopRAST/ for all the videos and photos and more.
A whopping 116 surfers from at least 10 countries including Australia, Brazil, France, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, the Philippines, Russia, Thailand, and the USA, competed in the event, some even in both longboard and shortboard divisions.
The after party was held last night at Sinaloa on Jalan Padma Utara near Padma Beach, with excellent hosts Sam and Chelsea providing drinks and food and a perfect place for hanging out, then dancing and enjoying DJ mixes until almost midnight. See https://www.facebook.com/sinaloabali/
REnextop CEO Lillian Chen was all smiles at the after party, saying “We are extremely happy to have been able to come back to Bali again for the first top of the RAST tour, now for the third year. This year we will try even harder to promote the surfers and our tour across broader media platforms. We just finished organizing and running the X-Games in Shanghai at the beginning of June, so being able to come to Bali and enjoy the beach and this event is such as treat. Thanks ASC and the Padma Boys working with our REnxtop team to make this such a good running event. Thanks to all our RAST surfers for coming and supporting our tour, and thanks to Sinaloa for a great party place!”
The next RAST event is scheduled for 22-25 August at Covelong Point in Chennai, India as part of the Covelong Point Surf, Music and Yoga Festival. India is an exciting new destination with an already established surfing community, so it will be another exciting RAST adventure! More information will be forthcoming soon.
Men’s Shortboard Division
1. Rio Waida (INA)
2. Oney Anwar (INA)
3. Mega Artana (INA)
3. Reef Doig (AUS)
Women’s Shortboard Division
1. Hayanna Iguchi (BRA)
2. Brittany Penaroza (USA)
3. Kailani Johnson (INA)
3. Diah Rahayu Dewi (INA)
Men’s Longboard Division
1. Masaya Tsukamoto (JPN)
2. Marven Abat (PHI)
3. Arip Nurhidayat (INA)
3. Jay-R Esquivel (PHI)
Women’s Longboard Division
1. Natsumi Taoka (JPN)
2. Dhea Natasya (INA)
3. Daisy Valdez (PHI)
3. Maricel Parajes (PHI)
Check all the results and scores from the event on Live Heats athttps://www.liveheats.com/events/1803
RAST 1 was sponsored by REnextop Entertainment, REnex, M-GRAPH,WWW.CHTWM.COM, Sinaloa, Ibis Styles, and Carver Skateboards, and organized by REnextop, the ASC, the Padma Boys and the PSOI . With media support by BaliBelly, Baliwaves.com, Surftime Magazine, Meerkat Global, and Pemburu Ombak.