High alert in Bali’s Padang Padang for Rip Curl Cup to be held Sunday

A shot from the contest’s trials in May 2018. Photo: Rip Curl Asia

There may be a showdown of some of the world’s best barrel riders at Bali’s legendary Padang Padang break this weekend if conditions deliver for the Rip Curl Cup.

The competition, a one-day special World Surf League (WSL) event, has moved its status to red (standby) from yellow (high alert), putting surfers on call for a potential 7am start time on Sunday morning.

Sixteen surfers are facing off in the Rip Curl Cup, eight of whom are local. The defending champion is Balinese surfer Mega Semadhi, who grew up just down the road from the beach.

Because it’s surfing and whether the contest can move forward will be contingent on conditions, the cup isn’t tethered down to a single date, but has a month-long waiting period, July 1 to 31.

The event’s motto is “It’s on when it’s on,” and we know from last year it holds true to those words, because when the swell the wasn’t big enough to produce Padang’s epic barrels, the competition was called off last year.

But event director and Rip Curl SEA Marketing Manager James Hendy is optimistic about things running on Sunday.

“As surfers in Indonesia, this what we wait all year for,” he said in a statement shared with Coconuts Bali from WSL.

“Our goal is to see eight of the world’s best tube riders and eight of the  best local Padang specialists testing their limits on the best day of the year at Padang. Anything less and we don’t run. This swell is looking very promising, and with some help from the Bali gods, hopefully the surfing world will be in for another amazing Rip Curl Cup on Sunday.”

Surfline, the event’s official surf forecaster, projects a powerful, long-period SW swell will be building up with its peak on Sunday, which will hopefully produce conditions similar to what we saw in the event’s trials on May 27.

Here’s the breakdown of the heats for the first two rounds of the competition, as announced by WSL:

ROUND 1
Heat 1
Garut Widiarta (IND)
Mason Ho (HAW)-TBC
Agus “Blacky” Setiawan
(IND)Jay Davies (AUS)

Heat 2
Lee Wilson (IND)
Josh Kerr (AUS)
Mustofa Jeksen (IND)
Bruno Santos (BRA)

Heat 3
Mega Semadhi(IND)
Jack Robinson (AUS)
Alik Rudiarta (IND)
Gearoid McDaid (IRL)

Heat 4
Bol Adi Putra(IND)
Nic Von Rupp (PRT)
Mega Artana (IND)
Jacob Willcox (AUS)

ROUND 2
Heat 1
Garut Widiarta (IND)
Bruno Santos (BRA)
Mustofa Jeksen (IND)
Jacob Willcox (AUS)

Heat 2
Lee Wilson (IND)
Jack Robinson (AUS)
Agus “Blacky” Setiawan (IND)
Gearoid McDaid (IRL)

Heat 3
Mega Semadhi(IND)
Josh Kerr(AUS)
Mega Artana (IND)
Nic Von Rupp (PRT)

Heat 4
Made Adi Putra (IND)
Mason Ho (HAW)TBC
Alik Rudiarta (IND)
Jay Davies (AUS)
Bali has been selected as the site for eight WSL events in 2018, which are being supported by the Indonesian government. In May, at the Corona Bali Pro at Keramas, the government expressed its more recently acknowledged tactic to capitalism on the country’s epic waves and sell Indonesia as a surfing destination to try and attract more foreign tourists.

 

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