Gold Coast, Queensland, Tuesday 16th April, 2013: The first event of surfing’s Queensland Championship Circuit (QCC), The Chiko MP Classic gets underway this weekend, where the Gold Coast will play host to some of Queensland’s finest surfers, along with a throng of eager international ripper’s who will be looking for a win in one of Australia’s most prestigious events. Last year, the MP Classic celebrated its 11-year anniversary only weeks after the passing of its namesake, Michael Peterson (MP) at age 59. Peterson is considered a legend or enigma of the surfing world after his successful, yet colourful rise to the top of the sport in the 1970’s. 2012 QCC Champion and former Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) World Championship Tour (WCT) surfer, Nathan Hedge (North Narrabeen, NSW/ Buderim, QLD) will be competing again this year and looking to defend his title. To do so, he will first have to defeat a stellar field of surfers, including last year’s MP Classic winner, Lincoln Taylor (Point Lookout, QLD) and 1978 World Champion, Wayne “Rabbit” Bartholomew (Snapper Rocks, QLD). Bartholomew grew up alongside Peterson on the Gold Coast and the two shared an intense competitive rivalry in the mid 70’s. “I’ve been surfing at Duranbah a lot more often and trying to catch up with Mick [Fanning] and just get my head around the Gold Coast beaches lately,” said Hedge about his preparation for the 4-event series. “The QCC is world-class as far as structure, opportunity and competition goes. It’s a great way to gauge your surfing against some of the best surfers in the world and prepare you to compete at the sport’s highest levels,” he added. Event organisers are expecting great conditions for the iconic event. “According to the swell and weather forecasts, it looks like we’re going to have great waves for both days of competition this weekend, and we’re definitely going to see some amazing surfing,” said Surfing Queensland’s Events and Communications Manager, Ben Whitmore. Competitors will be competing for a $10,000 prize purse including $5000 for the winner of the event. In addition the winner will also receive an iconic Michael Peterson designed single fin surfboard for their efforts. The 2013 QCC also boasts a stellar AUD$30,000 prize-pool, with an extra AUD$500 randomly awarded to four competitors who competes in all four events. Based on competitors’ best three-of-four results, the series’ top two athletes will also get the chance to compete against the world’s best surfers at the 2014 ASP Quiksilver Pro Trials. Photo Credit: Whitmore / Surfing Queensland]]>
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