Tiago ‘Saca’ Pires will be a part of the world circuit’s top 34 by the Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) in 2014 after being granted an injury wildcard, the athlete announced at his Facebook page. The only portuguese surfer in the world tour finished the previous season in the 36th place, which would theoretically leave him out of next year’s elite division, something that now isn’t meant to happen due to the wildcard.
“Just started the day with great news. It’s official, I was granted one of the injury wildcards given by ASP World Tour Surfing for 2014! Thank you very much to everyone for your support in this very difficult year”, the Ericeira surfer mentioned at his Facebook Page.
‘Saca’ didn’t compete for more than half of the season after facing a knee injury in May, during a free surfing session in Santa Cruz, Californa, USA. In total, the athlete did not compete in eight stages of the World Tour. The hopes of the surfer got turned to the injury wildcird, a special entry for the highest division athletes that get injured during the season and are unable to compete for a large amount of time. Tiago Pires disputed the wildcard with the also injured Owen Wright (absent from eight stages in 2014), Glenn Hall (6) and Dusty Payne (4).
The decision on the granting of the injury wildcard, who was made by the ASP and a specialized medic unit, was based on the number of stages that the athletes were absent from and the seriousness of the injuries. Tiago Pires and Owen Wright got pulled to the top division, while Glenn Hall was made first substitute.
Tiago Pires will enter his seventh consecutive season competing in the ASP World Tour, and it’s still unknown if he will recover on time to participate in the 2014 circuit’s first stage, Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast, which will take place on March 1st in Australia.
Esta publicação também está disponível em | This article is also available in: Portuguese (Portugal)