Carissa Moore (HAW), 18, returned to the podium’s highest block, winning the richest event on the ASP Women’s World Tour in clean, one-meter waves during the Commonwealth Bank Beachley Classic at Dee Why Point, Sydney today.
Moore defeated 2004 ASP Women’s World Champion Sofia Mulanovich (PER), 27 to claim her second out of four finals this season, pocketing a massive US$40,000 winner’s cheque and resumes her position as the ASP Women’s World No. 1.
“I’m really, really happy, I’ve been fired up ever since the last two events with Sally (Fitzgibbons) and I’m just super excited I was able to come out on top this time,” Moore said.
On a day when wave selection proved critical to success, Moore clawed her way back into the lead in the dying minutes of the Final, posting 6.83 and 8.33 (out of 10) scores, to defeat the Mulanovich by 15.60 to 14.60 (out of 20.00).
“I was really excited to make another final and it was refreshing to have a Sofia as an opponent,” Moore said. “She was leading for most of the heat and I was kind of nervous out there.”
Moore’s victory sees her a healthy 3350 points ahead of closest rival Sally Fitzgibbons, (AUS), 20, on the ASP World Title rankings and has marked herself as the surfer to beat with just three events remaining.
“I’m trying to not think about the World Title too much, I know that there are a lot of girls within range, so I’m just going to keep my head down and have fun.”
Mulanovich found unique form to reach her first Final this year. Mulanovich eliminated ASP rankings leader coming into the event, Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS), 20, in their dramatic Semifinal clash, before placing runner-up to Moore in the Final.
“I haven’t been on the podium for awhile and I’m just stoked to be here, it feels amazing,” Mulanovich said. “Carissa is an amazing surfer and she’s really hard to beat although I was beating her for awhile out there, I surprised myself.”
Fitzgibbons suffered a shock elimination during the Semifinals, citing poor wave-selection her downfall against Mulanovich that cost her, her Final berth as well as the ASP World No. 1 spot.
“I can’t be disappointed with a third place but I think the waves weren’t in my favour, I just didn’t quite find my rhythm,” Fitzgibbons said. “Some days you have it like in Bells and New Zealand and some days you don’t and today I just wasn’t quite there.”
Commonwealth Bank Beachley Classic Final Results:
Carissa Moore (HAW) 15.60 def Sofia Mulnovich (PER) 14.60
Commonwealth Bank Beachley Classic Semifinal Results:
Heat 1: Sofia Mulanovich (PER) 14.03 def Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS) 13.60
Heat 2: Carissa Moore (HAW) 16.50 def Stephanie Gilmore (AUS) 16.00
Photos credit : Kirstin Scholtz /Will Hayden-Smith for ASP