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Wednesday, June 6, 2012
Updated: March 28, 8:52 PM ET
The Lime has juice

By Jon Coen
ESPN.com

Hawaiian Torrey Miester nailed a kerrupt flip and then added two hacks to his wave for a perfect 10 at the Bud Light Lime Surf Series in Oceanside last weekend. But that wasn't enough to beat fellow Hawaiian Dylan Goodale.

But while the finals were a barrel full of high performance moves, that wasn't the real story. While there were four Californians and two Hawaiians competing at the Volcom Fiji Pro, an army of good time boys from the Golden and Aloha states descended on ol' Oceanside for a weekend of tacos, beach fun, and a bit of surfing.

Let there be no doubt that the recent flux of international surfers and ripping Brazilians have been good for surfing. And make no mistake that Gabriel Medina shooting through Cloudbreak barrels is a look at the future. But with the raised level of competition and global scope in the elite ranks, many of our favorite American surfers have fallen off the ASP World Tour and some choose to not keep chasing stars. The result is that we just don't get to see them surf quite as much. Frankly the news value coming from San Diego County is the nature of this event itself -- all those former tour heavies and California coverboys in one place.

Torrey Miester nailed a kerrupt grab and still had enough left to get off a pair of turns for a perfect 10.

This is year number two for the Bud Light Lime Surf Series, being run by the affable Benji Weatherly. It's a format where each of the 32 invited surfers gets to surf an hour heat and his two best waves are added together to determine the main event. And if some of the featured surfers like Lisa Anderson and Kalani Robb (haven't heard that name since brunch at the Turtle Bay? Well, he's still ripping) feel this is a throwback to the days of the Bud Pro Tour, well, that's part of the inspiration -- basically a few domestic events giving surfers a chance to compete and win some green without the stress of the ASP Tour. And for the rest of us, we get to see Benny Bourgeois and Timmy Curran surf together.

And if you looked at the Oside Harbor lineup last weekend, you saw a lot of guys who haven't been very big fans of the ASP for one reason or another -- Bobby Martinez and Sunny Garcia have both been fined in the past. There were others who simply dropped out of surfing's governing body years ago.

This was, of course, the first time Martinez has been back in a jersey since his famed webcast rant at the Quiksilver New York Pro last September. And to no one's surprise, he ripped his way to fourth place.

"After doing this little contest, I don't think contests are for me any more. It was fun because the contest was different than the normal, but I couldn't ever see myself being a contest guy anymore," he told ESPN yesterday. "To tell you the truth, I didn't really watch any surfing. I just surfed my heat, and that was it. But the contest was run really cool. Benji does a real fun contest."

Bobby Martinez and Sunny Garcia, talking shop.

But just look at the number of former tour shreds -- Nathaniel Curran, Lisa Anderson, Martinez, Serena Brooke, Robb, Timmy Reyes, Garcia, Gabe Kling, Nate Yeomens, Ben Bourgeois, Cory Lopez, Dean Morrison, Weatherley, and Keala Kennelly. And a few of these surfers could still potentially make runs at re-qualification. So there's certainly talent at these events.

And the Series is partnered with The Mauli Ola Foundation, which introduces surfing as a natural treatment to people with genetic disorders. Over the weekend they got some surfers with special challenges into some waves. Can't overlook that.

On the women's side, Californian professional surf instructor Kyla Langen edged out Keala Kennely. But Kennelly was pretty pumped on the whole weekend.

"The Bud Light Event is a fun event and they are able to create a pretty stress-free environment where a bunch of surfers can come together, put on a jersey and go for a surf with a few of their friends, and then come in and share a beer and a laugh afterward," she said, "It's kind of what surfing is all about in the first place -- having a good time and enjoying it with your friends. Plus Bud Light pays every athlete an appearance fee to show up so everybody walks away with some money in their pocket with the possibility of making more if you perform well."

Dylan Goodale was awarded the "Winner Winner, Chicken Dinner," (aka first place.)

The next event is the Bud Light Lime Labor Day Cup, which will take place on the East Coast -- Jennet's Pier, Nags Head, N.C., August 31-Sept 2 (prime hurricane season.) Then the Right Side can see some of the heroes they don't see as much of anymore, possibly including Martinez, who is still "up in the air," about coming out.

2012 Bud Light Lime Surf Series event at Oceanside Men's Results:
1. Dylan Goodale
2. Nathaniel Curran
3. Torrey Meister
4. Bobby Martinez
5. Aaron Cormican
6. Kalani Robb
7. Timmy Reyes
8. Gabe Kling
9. Nate Yeomans
10. Tim Curran
11. Eric Geiselman
12. Nate Tyler
13. Dylan Perillo
14. Kilian Garland
15. Benny Bourgeois
16. Dylan Graves
17. Mike Losness
18. Cheyne Magnusson
19. Cory Lopez
20. Sunny Garcia
21. Jason Harris
22. Ricky Whitlock
23. Dean Morrison
24. Alex Smith
25. Darrell Goodrum
26. Nick Rozsa
27. Sean Moody
28. Makau Rothman
29. Benji Weatherley
30. Gavin Beschen
31. Jesse Merle Jones
32. Kekoa Bacalso

Women's Results:
1. Kyla Langen
2. Keala Kennelly
3. Lis Anderson
4. Kim Mayer
5. Serena Brooke
6. Bianca Valenti
7. Shea Hodges
8. Sarah Beardmore