LAMBTON schoolgirl Madison Poole believes she surfs better when she’s nervous.
Madison Poole at the Surfest Pro Junior. Picture: Paul Danovaro
And the 17-year-old expects to be exactly that when she comes up against two-time defending world champion Tyler Wright at Surfest’sGrandstand Sports Clinic Women’s Pro this week.
Poole, who is inyear 11 St Francis Xavier’s College, gained a Surfest wildcard into the 6000-point World Surf League qualifying series contest and will meet the top seed and two others in heat one of round three.
The women’s competition got through just one heat of round one on Tuesday before dangerous conditions prompted the event to be put on hold until Wednesday.
Poole, ranked 185 on the QS, will have just her second start in a 6000-point contest when she surfs her home break against the world’s best.
“She’s one of my idols,” Poole said.“It will be exciting but I’ll be nervous, but it’s all experience.”
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She had a brief encounter with Wright at the n Boardriders Battle final at Newcastle on the weekend, surfing for Merewether Surfboard Club as their junior competitor against Culburra in round one of the teams section on Saturday.Merewether won the heat and Culburra were eliminated. However, Wright’s team got enough points in other events to make the grand final, which they won narrowly ahead of Merewether.
Madison Poole, front in the white shirt, in Merewether Surfboard Club’s squad after the n Boardriders Battle final at Newcastle on Sunday. Picture: Jonathan Carroll
Juniors didn’t surf on Sunday because of rough conditions but Poole took positives away from the experience.
“I saw [Wright] there but I didn’t get to talk to her,” Poole said.“Our teams came up against each other and they beat us, but we still came second and that’s really good for Merewether. They’re such a good team to ride for.
“I surfed pretty well and everyone was happy because I did what they said to do, and that’s get in quickly, and that got them through.
“It was nerve-racking but that actually makes me surf better, when I’m nervous.
“Coming into Surfest, it gave me experience with all the pros around. But I’m very excited to come up against Tyler Wright and if someone in the heat has a shocker, then that helps me, but if I don’t get through, it’s all for experience anyway.”
As for potentially taking onbig swell this week, she said:“It doesn’t really bother me. When it comes to a comp you just have to deal with the conditions and you know water safety are going to be out there. But I’m pretty confident when it comes to that stuff.”
She’s a very powerful surfer and obviously a very, very good surfer as well,
She always the one at comps that blows everyone’sminds with how she surfs so strong, like a man,she’s powerfully built.
they were just saying good luck
just saying for experience and points