Carissa Moore (HAW) won the 2019 World Surf League (WSL) Title at the lululemon Maui Pro, the final stop on the WSL Women’s Championship Tour (CT). Moore’s victory comes following her provisional qualification for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. Although she defeated her closest opponent, 17-year-old Caroline Marks (USA), to clinch her fourth World Title, the two will represent America together as surfing makes its Olympic debut in Tokyo next year.
“That was crazy and I was trying to keep my focus and emotions in check,” said Moore. “This is incredible! It’s been years of work and years of growing and learning. It’s been a journey and I’ve been really looking forward to this moment, but it hasn’t sunk in yet. So many of my family and friends are here and I’m so excited to share this with them.”
“I dreamed of this moment for a really long time,” continued Moore. “Each world title has been a little different and this one was definitely the hardest. Being in the Title race with Caroline and Lakey has been incredible and they’ve both really pushed me. I wouldn’t be here without my amazing support team. I felt so much love on this journey this year and it really pushed me through. This year I wanted to do things a little differently and my non-profit Moore Aloha has really given me that sense of purpose. It feels like things have come full circle and following in Duke’s footsteps in the Olympics gives me chills just to think about it. I hope to go to Tokyo and spread the aloha spirit and I’m really proud and honored to represent the USA and in particular Hawaii.”
“This year has been so amazing and I just want to thank everyone in my corner, I wouldn’t be here without them,” said Marks. “That heat was pretty tricky and I think my first wave was the difference, maybe if I had made that turn I would’ve made the heat, but Mike (Parsons) said if you don’t go for it you’re not going to win. The way you win Titles and events is going for it so I was stoked I went for it. Steph is such a hard competitor and so good at competing. Unfortunately, it didn’t go my way but congratulations to Carissa. She’s so inspiring and this year’s just been amazing so I’m really stoked to be a part of it.”
“I think the highlight of my year was winning the first event with equal pay, that was incredible,” continued Marks. “Then Portugal was amazing, it’s just been so fun traveling with Lakey and Mike and all the girls. Everyone’s been pushing me so much and my whole family is here at this event and it’s just such a special moment. I’ve made the Olympics which is probably one of, if not the biggest moments of my career and I’m just going to enjoy that and soak it all in.”
Stephanie Gilmore Wins lululemon Maui Pro, Takes Down Moore and Marks
“I found myself sitting there in good positions in the lead next to these girls and it just brought back these thrilling feelings and memories of being in World Title races,” said Gilmore. “There is so much on the line and I think I just kicked into a new gear. Amazing event and year for everybody. And, of course, it is so good to have Tyler back. I could not have thought of a better person to share the Final with. She is surfing better than ever so I cannot wait to see her next year and sure you will be as dangerous as ever.”
“Congratulations to Carissa and to Caroline,” continued Gilmore. “Caroline is an incredible asset to our sport and has so many future years and multiple World Titles to come, I can see it already. Congratulations to all the girls and to all the Olympians. See you in Tokyo. This has been a monumental year for us with equal prize money. It has done so much more for women in sport, and women in all kinds of industries in the workplace around the world, to show people what should be normal, that equality should be normal. I am really proud to be a part of that and to have the WSL lead the way in that way. That is really special.”
First Eight Provisional Olympic Qualifiers Are Set
Surfing will make its Olympic debut in Tokyo in 2020 and the 2019 WSL CT was a crucial qualification pathway for the world’s best surfers. Following the season finale in Maui, the WSL rankings have determined the first eight eligible women to qualify for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, subject to all qualified surfers meeting the ISA’s and IOC’s eligibility requirements and being selected by their respective National Olympic Committee.
The eight provisional qualifiers are:
USA – Carissa Moore and Caroline Marks
Australia – Stephanie Gilmore and Sally Fitzgibbons
Brasil – Tatiana Weston-Webb and Silvana Lima
France – Johanne Defay
Costa Rica – Brisa Hennessy