World Surf League: 2018 Vans US Open of Surfing Kicks Off at Huntington Beach
The 7th stop on WSL Women's Championship, 2018 Vans US Open of Surfing kicked off at Huntington Beach in California.
Tyler Wright (AUS) and Silvana Lima (BRA) withdrew from this event due to injury in Corona Open J-Bay.
The event ran between Round 1 and Round 3 in small waves condition.
The former event champion Sage Erickson (USA) was defeated by Nikki Van Dijk (AUS) in Heat 1 of Round 2. Unfortunately she left the event earlier.
Currently ranking No. 1 and No. 2 of the Jeep Leaderboard, Stephanie Gilmore (AUS) and Lakey Peterson (USA) advanced to Quarterfinal.
Also, Courtney Conlogue (USA), who cameback to CT since Corona Open J-Bay, and Johanne Defay (FRA) took the top in Round 1 and Round 3, advanced to Quarterfinal.
16-year-old rookie, Caroline Marks (USA) took down Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS) and Tatiana Weston-Webb (BRA) in Round 1 and Roun 3. She advanced to Quarterfinal.
Lakey Peterson said;
"I'm trying not to focus on what anyone else is doing. I'm aware of what Steph's doing and what Tati's doing, but at the same time you just have to keep your eyes on yourself, put your best foot forward and the chips are going to fall where they're going to fall.
This year we've been handing the Jeep Leader Jersey back and forth, and it's really cool," she continued. "I really look up to her and admire her as a person, as a surfer and as an athlete. I'm really enjoying it and it's just pushed me to try and surf better and do my best. It's a lot of fun."
Sage Erickson said;
"It's a little bit hard to swallow. When you lose it hurts and when you win it feels great, so you have to balance out all those lessons. I had a moment where it was like, ‘Woah, last year was a whole different feeling. Life's so interesting. I believe that it's different people's moments at different times and life kind of serves you what you need. Sorry about the emotion, but it's real, the Tour's real, and it's all exciting in its own way."
Caroline Marks said;
"I've surfed against Kirra so much in the Juniors, and it's crazy how last year we were in every Final together, and now we're here. She's such an amazing surfer and I'm so glad that she was able to get into the contest. For me winning here twice and finishing runner-up last year, it gives me so much confidence.
"Coming from Florida, I wouldn't want to have grown up anywhere else. I feel really comfortable in waves like this and, for some reason, the crowd doesn't make me nervous here. And now that I live here, I really like surfing Huntington. It's the best of both worlds. I'm definitely not jaded or bummed, I'm just really excited."
2018 Vans US Open of Surfing Round 1 Results: Heat 1: Courtney Conlogue (USA) 12.83, Nikki Van Dijk (AUS) 12.63, Carissa Moore (HAW) 9.84
Heat 2: Johanne Defay (FRA) 12.40, Keely Andrew (AUS) 9.66, Paige Hareb (NEZ) 7.77
Heat 3: Stephanie Gilmore (AUS) 10.96, Sage Erickson (USA) 10.00, Kirra Pinkerton (USA) 5.07
Heat 4: Pauline Ado (FRA) 12.26, Lakey Peterson (USA) 11.50, Coco Ho (HAW) 9.37
Heat 5: Malia Manuel (HAW) 11.24, Tatiana Weston-Webb (BRA) 10.40, Macy Callaghan (AUS) 8.90
Heat 6: Caroline Marks (USA) 12.40, Bronte Macaulay (AUS) 9.87, Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS) 9.30