Team USA leads heading into final day, Brazil close on their tail
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Excellent conditions greeted the world’s best adaptive surfers on the second day of the 2016 Stance ISA World Adaptive Surfing Championship presented by Vissla and the City of San Diego. The stage was set for the final day of competition on Sunday where the individual medalists and historic first-ever Team World Champion will be crowned.
Team USA put on a solid performance and moved into first place in the overall team standings, just a slight margin ahead of Team Brazil in second.
Click here to see the full team standings: http://isaworlds.com/adaptive/2016/pdf/wasc-2016-team-points.pdf
“The passion and energy of these surfers is second to none,” said ISA President Fernando Aguerre. “These surfers’ determination, dedication and passion for Surfing will culminate tomorrow when we crown the World Champions. Regardless of who wins the medals, we will finish the contest tomorrow knowing that the sport of Adaptive Surfing has taken a huge step forward and will continue to spread joy to the lives of others around the world.”
Saturday morning at La Jolla Shores saw an increase in swell, providing clean 2-3+ foot waves and excellent, glassy conditions. All the six classification divisions competed where the top two waves from either of the first two rounds were totaled to advance onto the single elimination rounds.
South Africa’s JP Veaudry and Brazil’s Fellipe Lima were the stand out performers, respectively earning the two highest heats of the day with 17.94 and 17.40.
Llwelyn Williams, the sole representative of Team Wales, powered through the AS-2 division for standing and kneeling surfers with above the knee amputations. In Round 2 Williams posted a heat total of 12.67, beating the defending Gold Medal Mark ‘Mono’ Stewart (AUS). Williams continued his strong performance in the single elimination quarterfinals and advanced through to the Semifinals on Sunday.
“The waves today are great, better than yesterday,” said Williams. “It’s a huge thing to be representing my country. I don’t want to let them down. I am going to rest well tonight and hope for good waves for the Finals tomorrow.”
USA’s Dani Burt put on a strong showing for the female competitors, arriving to the AS-2 Quarter Finals where she fell just short. Competing among the men, Burt needed less than a half point to advance.
Canada’s Victoria Feige was not able to advance to the final day, however she spoke about the huge step for the growth of female Adaptive Surfing that was taken in the second edition of the event.
“It’s fantastic to be one of the females here,” said Feige. “It’s great to represent my country in this championship and prove that girls can charge just as hard.”
“Adaptive Surfing has been a wonderful thing in my life,” Feige added, “I was a surfer before my injury and I really wanted to get back into it. It’s that same feeling, speed, rush and acceleration that I have always loved.”
As the heats progressed through the afternoon, legendary surfer, Damien Hobgood, came down to La Jolla Shores to show his support for the sport of Adaptive Surfing.
“I was frothing to get down here,” said Hobgood. “These athletes are fearless and full of courage. It’s inspirational for me and everyone here watching on the beach.”
To wrap up the day, Round 2 of the Assist (AS-5) and Visually Impaired (AS-VI) Divisions took to the water. Jesse Billauer (USA) and Davi Teixeira (BRA), the respective Gold and Silver Medalists from the inaugural edition in the Assist Division, both advanced through to the Final. Having built a strong bond through the sport of Adaptive Surfing, Billauer and Teixeira will go head to head tomorrow for a rematch at the Gold Medal.
The schedule for the final day of competition is as follows:
7:30am – 8:50am: AS-1 (Stand/Kneel) Quarterfinals
8:50am – 9:30am: AS-5 (Assist) Semifinals
9:30am – 10:10am: AS-2 (Stand/Kneel) Semifinals
10:10 – 10:50am: AS-1 (Stand/Kneel) Semifinals
10:50am – 11:15: AS-VI (Visually Impaired) Final
11:15am – 11:40am: AS-5 (Assist) Final
11:40am – 12:05pm: AS-4 (Prone) Final
12:05pm – 12:30pm: AS-3 (Upright) Final
12:30pm – 12:55pm: AS-2 (Stand/Kneel) Final
12:55pm – 1:20pm: AS-1 (Stand/Kneel) Final
Schedule is subject to change.
Catch all the action on the live webcast on www.isaworlds.com.