World champions Kelly Slater and Stephanie Gilmore.
World champions Kelly Slater and Stephanie Gilmore. Supplied

Stars come out to play at awards

KINGSCLIFF’S Stephanie Gilmore was on hand as American superstar Kelly Slater broke down in tears during an emotionally charged acceptance speech at the ASP World Surfing Awards on Thursday.

Moments before hoisting high her fourth consecutive ASP Women’s World Championship trophy, Gilmore listened intently as the 10-time men’s world champion spoke fondly of the late Hawaiian legend Andy Irons.

Slater held a captive audience as he spoke of his road to the 10th world title and the enormous loss felt by the passing of Irons, who he described as a brother and humbly credited for much of his success.

As has become custom, surfing’s “night of nights” was marked by the world’s best surfers and surfing industry professionals swapping boardies for bow ties for a night of fun at the Gold Coast Convention Centre, just two days before the opening event of the 2011 World Tour.

However, the 2011 awards were significantly ramped up from last year, with live music, the pre-event “Blue Carpet” show and several other exciting additions to the line-up.

Surfing Australia rolled out another Green Room Conference at the Stars Room at Twin Towns Services Club on Wednesday.



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