Surfing a wave of success
By TONY WHITE
NORTHCOAST surfers Shaun Cansdell and Daniel Ross have been thrust onto the world stage.
The close friends have gained international recognition with a stunning performance in the US$125,000 Sooruz Lacanau Pro in France.
Cansdell, the 22-year-old goofy footer from Mullaway, showed nerves of steel to overcome American Tim Reyes in a heart-stopping final of the prestigious six-star WQS event in thumping waves at Plage Centrale Lacanau.
Yamba-based Ross, also 22, finished equal third after being outpointed by Reyes in the last minute of their semi-final showdown.
It was an incredible performance by the pair, who have surfed together competitively since young teenagers.
Cansdell's win, worth US$15,000, catapulted him into second on the world qualifying tour (WCT) rankings and almost certainly a place on next year's lucrative WCT surfing tour, which travels to the world's most exotic surf locations.
His parents, Keith and Dara, stayed up Sunday night and into the early hours of Monday morning watching events in France unfold live via the internet.
"We were on the edge of our seats, it's an unreal result, fantastic," Keith Cansdell said.
"Shaun has been on a roll lately.
"We thought Shaun and Dan were going to surf the final together, just like the days of old.
"They grew up surfing against each other."