DILLON PERILLO GETS RIP CURL PRO WILDCARD

Oct. 8, 2012, Peniche, Portugal – Thunderous tubes, the world’s best surfers and a world title race going down to the wire. These are the elements that are destined to make the 2012 Rip Curl Pro Portugal presented by Moche a truly historic surfing event. Add to that a pair of hungry wildcards craving big scalps, thousands of screaming Portuguese fans and the 2012 European Rip Curl GromSearch final and you can see why from October 10th-21st the fishing town of Peniche and its famous break Supertubos will be the center of the surfing cosmos.

The first event wildcard has been awarded to 22-year-old Dillon Perillo (USA), who possesses a super smooth style honed on his local Malibu point-breaks and is excited about the opportunity to take on the world’s best surfers at spitting Supertubos.

“I’ve surfed as a wildcard in two ASP World Championship Tour events before, and am again just super excited to take on the world’s best surfers, especially if the surf is pumping,” said Perillo. “All you can do is give it everything you have and I’m just hoping to surf some incredible waves.”

The second and final wildcard berth will be given to the winner of the Moche Wildcard Trials event, featuring 10 of Portugal’s best surfers plus a stacked invitee field of European talent like Jayce Robinson (UK), Pablo Guetirez (ESP), PV Laborde (FRA) and Francisco Alves (PRT), as well as Brazil’s Bruno Santos. Perillo and the trialists are hoping for a repeat of last year’s epic conditions at the Rip Curl Pro Portugal.

“Last year’s Rip Curl Pro Portugal featured some of the best surf and most exciting heats in the history of pro surfing,” said contest organizer and two-times Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) World Champion, Damien Hardman. “We just hope we score the same conditions; big, perfect, wave-pool like A-Frame tubes, sunny skies and offshore winds. The early indications are that this is entirely possible.”

With the Rip Curl Pro Portugal presented by Moche being event 8 out of 10 on the ASP World Championship Tour and with the world title race shaping up to be one of the closest in years, the drama will definitely be added to the epic conditions.

“This year’s event is going to be especially important,” said Mick Fanning (AUS), who was leading Joel Parkinson (AUS) and Kelly Slater (USA) in the ASP World Title ratings going into the European leg of the tour. “With the race so close, every event gets more crucial as we get to the pointy end. If Supertubos delivers the waves it did last year, it’s going to be epic.”

While those three ratings frontrunners can be considered favorites, the defending champion Adriano De Souza (BRA) and tube maestro wunderkid John Florence (HAW) are tipped by many to be dangerous. Also serving as a glimpse into the future, the 2012 European Rip Curl GromSearch series presented by POSCA will be held on October 8th, with the finals webcast live on October 9th. Up for grabs is not only the chance to be crowned European GromSearch Champion but also the golden opportunity to win a trip to the Rip Curl Pro at Bells Beach in 2013 to compete in the Rip Curl International GromSearch final.

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