Occy Heading West
The bar has been raised with today's announcement that 1999 World Champion, Mark Occhilupo (AUS) will be joining some of the world's best surfers to take on the power and might of Surfers Point, Margaret River as a wildcard entry in the 2009 Drug Aware Pro when it kicks off on 30 March 2009.
Occhilupo (42), who currently resides in Coolangatta (Queensland), holds the record for the longest career in professional surfing spanning a quarter of century. He was 17 when he finished 16th in the world in 1983. Having made it to No. 3 the following year, Occhilupo dropped off the World Championship Tour in 1987, having succumbed to the pressures of success. A decade passed before Mark Occhilupo staged one of the greatest comebacks in sporting history to reclaim his place on the ASP World Tour, finishing runner-up to Kelly Slater in 1997. In 1999, Occhilupo won three of his 12 World Tour victories and took home the ASP World Title at the age of 33.
Having won the first ever professional event staged in Margaret River back in 1985 and taking home his second Margaret River Pro title again in 2006, Occhilupo is looking forward to joining Jake Paterson and Brett Hardy as wildcard entries into this year's Drug Aware Pro.
"Margaret River is pretty special to me. It doesn't seem that long ago that I took home the event trophy in '85..." said the two time event winner.
"I'm just looking forward to getting back out there and seeing whether my body will hold up, a few years on. Mae and Jay were with me when I won in '06, so I am stoked that the family will be coming out with me again this year."
Drug Aware Pro trials kick off on Sunday 29 March, with the women's heats commencing on Monday 30 March 2009. 2009 Drug Aware Pro Men's and Women's winners will be crowned following the women's final on Saturday 4th April and the Men's Final on Sunday 5th April.
High-resolution digital images for media and commercial use are available through ASP's photography distribution. For inquiries, contact Steve Robertson (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Drug Aware Pro Media Contact:
Twenty Twenty Marketing
P: +61 439 511 338