Yesterday it finally happened: The WSL organizers gave the green light and the Tahiti Pro Teahupo’o went into the first round. The favourites dominated for the most part, but there was also a tangible surprise.
While the top favourites Felipe Toledo, Gabriel Medina and Michel Bourez all secured a direct entry into the third round, other big names like Julian Wilson and Jordy Smith had to make an extra round due to their placement in round 1. Only 3 heats were surfed in round 2 and the first one was as strong as a bat: The defending champion and top favourite on the Tour victory is already on his way home, eliminated against an absolute No Name, namely the Tahiti wildcard Tikanui Smith.
Felipe Toledo’s extra shifts pay off
Felipe Toledo has always had a special relationship with Teahupo’o. However, to date it has not been particularly good. On the contrary. Teahupo’o poured enormous oil into the fire of the critics of the Brazilian, whose main argument is that Toledo cannot perform in heavy waves. And they haven’t been completely wrong until now, if you watch this video here
Felipe went to the Teahupo’o training camp this year and has been preparing for the contest in Tahiti for weeks. At least for the first round this paid off, which the Brazilian confidently won ahead of his compatriot Yago Dora and the local wildcard Tikanui Smith. And that this Mr. Smith is not a casual customer, Julian Wilson had to experience a round later in a bitter way. By the way, Toledo also delivered the best score of the day with a score of 8.50. Let’s see if he can maintain the level shown so far.
The best waves of the day
And here are the results so far:
Round 1 Results
Wade Carmichael (AUS) 12.23, Jeremy Flores (FRA) 10.00, Joan Duru (FRA) 8.20Heat
2: Ezekiel Lau (HAW) 11.
3, Ian Gouveia (BRA) 8.60, Jordy Smith (ZAF) 7.70Heat 3: Italo Ferreira (BRA) 14.84, Sebastian Zietz (HAW) 12.17, Miguel Pupo (BRA) 9.
3Heat 4: Gabriel Medina (BRA) 15.16, Wiggolly Dantas (BRA) 9.20, Tomas Hermes (BRA) 2.56Heat 5: Joel Parkinson (AUS) 11.63, Julian Wilson (AUS) 10.67, Mateia Hiquily (PYF) 8.94Heat 6: Filipe Toledo (BRA) 15.50, Yago Dora (BRA) 7.83, Tikanui Smith (PYF) 2.
0Heat 7: Frederico Morais (PRT) 11.16, Willian Cardoso (BRA) 10.84, Michael February (ZAF) 10.80Heat 8: Michel Bourez (PYF) 12.40, Keanu Asing (HAW) 9.50, Kanoa Igarashi (JPN) 7.56Heat 9: Adriano de Souza (BRA) 12.96, Matt Wilkinson (AUS) 12.17, Mikey Wright (AUS) 11.
7Heat 10: Kolohe Andino (USA) 12.83, Patrick Gudauskas (USA) 9.84, Griffin Colapinto (USA) 8.83Heat 11: Adrian Buchan (AUS) 12.66, Owen Wright (AUS) 11.47, Jesse Mendes (BRA) 11.00Heat 12: Connor O’Leary (AUS) 12.67, Michael Rodrigues (BRA) 8.76, Conner Coffin (USA) 8.53
Round 2 Results:
Heat 1: Tikanui Smith (PYF) 7.67 def. Julian Wilson (AUS) 5.83Heat
2: Jordy Smith (ZAF) 14.10 def. Mateia Hiquily (PYF) 6.67Heat 3: Wiggolly Dantas (BRA) 13.00 def. Willian Cardoso (BRA) 12.94