WSL Championship Tour 2019: Mid Season
It's hard to believe, but we have almost reached the halfway point of the 2019 season of the WSL Championship Tour. This year, the professional circuit has 11 events for men and 10 events for women.
A very important fact of the competition this year that shows that the times are advancing (although these are aspects that should be already exceeded) is that for the first time in history, the prize awarded by the Championship Tour in cash will be the same for both genders. To achieve this, a continuous struggle of women surfers for equality in their rights has been necessary.
A key figure in this fight is the Brazilian Maya Gabeira, also known because in January 2018 the surfer managed to dominate a wave of 20.75 meters in the Portuguese Praia do Norte de Nazaré, a town located 120 kilometers from Lisbon and respected by its huge and dangerous waves.
But let's focus on the merely competitive aspect. From April 3rd to 13th, the Championship Tour began with the Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast, at Snapper Rocks, Australia. The Brazilian Italo Ferreira took the win in the first event of the season with a score of 12.57, against the American Kolohe Andino with a difference of only 0.14 points. One of the most close finals of the last times. In the women's category, in the Boost Mobile Pro Gold Coast, American Caroline Marks won the final with 13.83 points against Hawaiian and favorite Carissa Moore by more than two points.
From April 17 to 27, also in Australia, the Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach was held in one of the most famous places of the rugged southern coast of the country. Italo Ferreira in this case could not defend his triumph last year, and the final was played between the Hawaiian John John Florence and the Brazilian Filipe Toledo, leaving the first winner with a score of 14,30. Courtney Conlogue won the women's triumph by winning 15.83 points against Hawaiian Malia Manuel.
The next stop was the Corona Bali Protected in Indonesia. In the women's category, the final was fight over by two Australian participants Stephanie Gilmore, one of the favorites for the title as she defended the trophy, and Sally Fitzgibbons. On this occasion the dominance of the first over the second was evident, to get a difference of 9.83 points. Therefore, title revalidated. The Japanese Kanoa Igarashi obtained the victory over the French Jeremy Flores by only 0.47 points difference. No doubt this was a surprise because all the surveys pointed to Italo Ferreira as the winner.
Back to Australia, in this case to the West Coast, during the days between May 29 and June 9 took place the Margaret River Pro. Again the Hawaiian John Florence took the trophy in front of another Old name, Kolohe Andino. Lakey Peterson won the duel in the final against Brazilian Tatiana Weston-Webb with a score of 13.33 points.
The last title played so far, the Oi Rio Pro, held in Rio de Janeiro did not surprise the men's category. The local Filipe Toledo defended the title in the final against the South African Jordy Smith with a score difference of 9.61. In the women's category the previously final defeated Sally Fitzgibbons obtained a score of 14.64 points, 2 above Carissa Moore.
So in the middle of the competition, we find the following podiums:
1st John John Florence
2nd Kolohe Andino
3rd Filipe Toledo
1st Sally Fitzgibbons
2nd Carissa Moore
3rd Stephanie Gilmore
The next brand on the calendar is the Corona Open J-Bay in South Africa where Filipe Toledo and Stephanie Gilmore defend the title between 9 and 22 July.