The Drug Aware Margaret River Pro, the third stop on the 2016 Samsung Galaxy WSL Championship Tour, kicked off this morning with Women’s Round 1
Courtney Conlogue of the USA (pictured) winning her Round 1 heat at the Drug Aware Margaret River Pro in Western Australia on Friday April 8, 2016. PHOTO: © WSL/ Sloane
Courtney Conlogue (USA), the current Jeep Ratings Leader, will advance straight to Round 3 after sending Alessa Quizon (HAW) and Trials winner Felicity Palmateer (AUS) to Round 2. Conlogue was able to find two solid waves to rack up a 13.40 two-wave combined score, earning her a 3.03 lead over Quizon.
“I have learned so much about my surfing and how to improve it at this wave,” Conlogue said. “I love how this venue is always changing. You never know what to expect coming here. You either get swell and amazing offshores or you get this wild, woolly condition. Everytime I come here is an adventure and you wake up and see what the day brings.”
Carissa Moore (HAW), three-time WSL Champion and last year’s event runner-up, charged through her heat, showcasing power, variety and speed against Sage Erickson (USA) and Laura Enever (AUS). Enever tried to combat Moore’s 15.77 two-wave combined score, but was not able to challenge with her pair of 6 point rides. Moore will advance to Round 3, while Enever and Erickson battle in elimination Round 2.
“I am happy where I am at right now, but of course I would have liked to have gotten a few spots better in the first two contests,” Moore said. “I like coming from behind and having something to chase. Seeing that target is exciting. I am happy to be here at Margaret River, the waves are fun.”
Carissa Moore of Hawaii (pictured) advancing in first place during Round 1 of the the Drug Aware Margaret River Pro in Western Australia. PHOTO: WSL/ Sloane
Nikki Van Dijk (AUS) is off to a strong start in Western Australia, as she defeat Tyler Wright (AUS), current World No. 2, and Coco Ho (HAW) in Round 1. Van Dijk demonstrated strong performances in the last two events and continued the trend today by earning two 7 point rides. A dramatic finish left Wright under both Van Dijk and Ho’s priority. Needing a second solid score to defeat Van Dijk, Wright was tempted by a wave out the back. Van Dijk played defense and used her priority to also take off on the wave, leaving Wright with an interference call.
“That was the ultimate seal dive, I don’t even know what that was and want to go watch the replay,” Van Dijk said. “But other than that, I am happy to make the next round and I feel good out there. Margarets is definitely a really challenging wave, you never really know what it is going to do or what conditions you’ll get. I love that element, but I would love to win here and I will take it heat by heat.”
Local favorite Bronte Macaulay (AUS) defeat six-time World Champion Stephanie Gilmore (AUS) and Johanne Defay (FRA) in the last heat of Round 1. Macaulay, who gained entry into the event as an injury replacement, charged Main Break to wrack up a 14.60 two-wave combined score, leaving Gilmore and Defay in a combination situation. Macaulay will advance to Round 3, while Gilmore and Defay will battle to avoid an early elimination.
“I am feeling more and more comfortable with every heat I surf,” Macaulay said. “Being a local here, I do not feel any pressure at all. I appreciate the support and when you walk down the beach and see all these familiar faces, it means a lot to me that they are taking time out of their day to come and watch, so I just want to put a good performance out in the water.”
Event organizers will convene tomorrow at 6:30am local time for a possible 7am start.
The Drug Aware Margaret River Pro will be webcast LIVE on WorldSurfLeague.com as well as the WSL app.
The event is also being carried by WSL LIVE broadcast partners Fox Sports Australia, CBS Sports in the United States, ESPN Brasil, Globosat, Edgesport, Sky NZ, Sport TV, Canal + Deportes, Channel Nine, MCS, Starhub, and Oceanic Time Warner Cable 250 & 1250 in Hawaii.
For more information, log onto WorldSurfLeague.com
Sally Fitzgibbons of Australia winning her Round 1 heat at the Drug Aware Margaret River Pro in Western Australia. PHOTO: © WSL/ Sloane
Drug Aware Margaret River Pro Women’s Round 1 Results:
Heat 1: Tatiana Weston-Webb (HAW) 13.60, Keely Andrew (AUS) 13.43, Bianca Buitendag (ZAF) 8.63
Heat 2: Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS) 15.57, Malia Manuel (HAW) 13.67, Chelsea Tuach (BRB) 10.60
Heat 3: Courtney Conlogue (USA) 13.40, Alessa Quizon (HAW) 10.37, Felicity Palmateer (AUS) 9.43
Heat 4: Carissa Moore (HAW) 15.77, Laura Enever (AUS) 12.83, Sage Erickson (USA) 10.57
Heat 5: Nikki Van Dijk (AUS) 14.80, Coco Ho (HAW) 12.16, Tyler Wright (AUS) 8.77
Heat 6: Bronte Macaulay (AUS) 14.60, Stephanie Gilmore (AUS) 7.77, Johanne Defay (FRA) 7.00
Drug Aware Margaret River Pro Women’s Round 2 Match-Ups:
Heat 1: Malia Manuel (HAW) vs. Keely Andrew (AUS)
Heat 2: Bianca Buitendag (ZAF) vs. Chelsea Tuach (BRB)
Heat 3: Tyler Wright (AUS) vs. Felicity Palmateer (AUS)
Heat 4: Johanne Defay (FRA) vs. Laura Enever (AUS)
Heat 5: Stephanie Gilmore (AUS) vs. Coco Ho (HAW)
Heat 6: Sage Erickson (USA) vs. Alessa Quizon (HAW