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Cazimero enjoys, touts waves at Ala Moana Bowls


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POSTED: Friday, August 21, 2009

The waves at Ala Moana Bowls weren't epic for the Sponsor Me Hawaii 1-star World Qualifying Series (WQS) event, but the 4- to 6-foot wave-face heights were good enough. In fact, Waimanalo's Kekoa Cazimero, who advanced out of his heat yesterday praised the South Shore waves when compared to other venues on the WQS.

"This wave is seriously better than any wave I've ever surfed outside of Hawaii on the QS," said Cazimero, who has been competing abroad for the past three years. "(Ala Moana Bowls) is definitely underrated, because there's always guys ripping and good waves."

Cazimero and the other contestants are surfing for a $10,000 prize purse and qualification to compete in the prestigious Vans Triple Crown of Surfing later this year.

"This is a great opportunity for all of us," Cazimero said. "It gives me a chance to get into the Triple Crown, beside the other qualifiers and I'm stoked. Me, being a local boy here, this is my home break, and it gives me even more motivation to make it into the final."

According to Triple Crown Executive Director Randy Rarick, there will be a handful of Triple Crown entries for Hawaiian surfers per qualification through the Xcel Pro and Sponsor Me Hawaii event. Those aforementioned Triple Crown spots will be assigned after the Hawaiian surfers rated on the WQS secure their spots in the heat draw for the Haleiwa and Sunset events.

While it may seem a little bit strange that a surf contest in town is playing a big role in the Triple Crown, Cazimero believes that Ala Moana is the perfect venue for competition.

"Ala Moana Bowls is a world-class wave," said Cazimero, who surfs at this South Shore break religiously and has an intimate knowledge of the wave. "When it's like 2- to 3-foot (Hawaiian scale), which is what we're surfing in this contest, it's a really contestable wave. All around it's a straight-up high performance wave."

Cazimero advanced out of his heat yesterday behind Kauai's Alex Smith. Both young surfers put on a brilliant display of modern surfing. Smith flared up on his backside attack with vertical turns, while Cazimero utilized his front-hand surfing and attempted a reverse 360 degrees aerial maneuver on the inside section.

With the high level of talent competing yesterday, Cazimero believes that this pro surf contest deserves more prestige and support from the general public.

"This is definitely a good scene because there's so much raw and good talent at (the Sponsor Me Hawaii 1-star QS)," said Cazimero. "In every heat all four guys are ripping and pushing heat. It's keeping me on my toes and it's a great event."

Cazimero, Smith and the remaining surfers in the Sponsor Me Hawaii 1-star QS will conclude competition today at Ala Moana Bowls. The contest site is at Magic Island at the Ala Moana Beach Park. If you can't make it to the beach, this surf contest is being broadcast live on www.surf.transworld.net.