|Bronte MaCaulay. Image WSL|
HUNTINGTON BEACH, Calif./USA (Sunday, June 11, 2016) – The final day of action at the World Surf League (WSL) Los Cabos Open of Surf finished in classic, three-to-four foot Zippers and crowned three champions for the Women’s QS6000, Men’s and Women’s Junior events. Taking the top honor for the Women’s QS, Bronte Macaulay (AUS) took out an incredible field of talent here in Los Cabos and gained a hard-earned 6000 points towards Samsung Galaxy Women’s Championship Tour (CT) qualification.
The Junior Men put on a showcase of high-performance surfing, taking to the air on numerous occasions and posting excellent numbers — but it was Griffin Colapinto (USA) who earned a massive win in his home region of North America. Taking a win away from the North America region, Sophie McCulloch (AUS) stole the show in the Junior Women’s event and claimed an impressive victory – keeping the trophy in Australia for another year.
Capping off an incredible campaign at the Los Cabos Open of Surf Women’s QS6000, Bronte Macaulay (AUS) took down Dominic Barona (ECU) in exciting fashion to keep the Aussies stronghold on this event after topping fellow countrymen and defending champion Nikki Van Dijk (AUS) in the Semifinals. Receiving pristine Zippers conditions in the Final, it was an absolute battle for the victory that Macaulay had to earn in the dying minutes.
“I was super fortunate that wave came through at the end and I’m just over the moon to win this event,” Macaulay said. “It’s really exciting win you get a wave like that in the final minutes and post the score you need. I was making a lot of errors and had to keep pushing myself through — can’t believe I just won my first QS6000 it hasn’t really even sunk in yet.”
Already making a name for herself on the CT, as an injury replacement for Lakey Peterson (USA), the Australian is comfortable in a jersey with her time spent on the dream tour. Macaulay did not have an easy road to the final and had to dig deep for great performances.
“These points are really valuable in order to qualify which is my this year,” Macaulay added. “The last QS I did was in February so it’s pretty weird to think about. But, I’ve been competing the whole time so I feel like I was really well set coming in here with my strategy down. Getting that experience in the CT has just helped so much and what it takes to beat these amazing women.”
Making her first appearance in a Women’s QS event, Dominic Barona (ECU) made a massive impact on the Women’s QS scene here at Zippers. Taking down CT standout Tatiana Weston-Webb (HAW), and Brazilian powerhouse Silvana Lima (BRA) — who retained the highest heat total of the event with an 18.10 and single-wave score, 9.60. Barona was brought to tears of joy coming onto the beach and showed how much this meant to her after nearly missing out on the contest.
“I’m so excited I was able to make that final, it was really a dream come true,” Barona said. “I knew I could’ve taken this event, but I made some mistakes in that heat and it cost me the title. Above all I’m so thankful to God I have this opportunity to be here with friends and doing what I love, that’s more important to me I think.”
“I was so close to not making this event not having support and I actually had to sell some boards to make it down here and Ecuasol helped me so much at this contest,” Barona added. “I’m just so fortunate to be here but it’s tough as a Latin American women surfer and I hope that changes for some competitors like me. But, those are the type of challenges that make you chase your dreams and move forward in life.”
The Los Cabos Open of Surf Junior Men’s event got back in the water with Semifinal heats as conditions continued improving to their true potential. But, when all was said and done, Griffin Colapinto (USA) took a last second ride and blasted a tail-high air reverse — posting an 8.23 for the win over an in-form Nolan Rapoza (USA). Colapinto only found three waves, earning an 8.83 for his first score and finishing off the event with an incredible finale.
“That was such an insane final with the waves coming in perfectly and I’m so excited to win this event,” Colapinto said. “Seeing Nolan get that 8.23 for his big air I was just thinking if one comes through like that I’ll have to throw something even bigger. This is a huge result and gives me a lot of confidence after having some shocking results in the QS — now I feel that momentum again and it’s a great feeling. Hopefully I can make a few more finals in some of the Junior events, especially the US Open since I won there and really want to back it up.”
In an international Final, it was Sophie McCulloch (AUS) who earned a big win for the Los Cabos Open of Surf Junior Women. Winning out of her home region of Australiasia, McCulloch continued the Aussie’s reign over this event after Isabella Nichols (AUS) took down the title last year. Despite earning no points for the win, she will take a lot of experience gained after making it to Round 7 in the Women’s QS6000 event as well – in addition to $2,000 for her Junior win.
“I’m so happy to take that win with all those girls just ripping throughout this entire event,” McCulloch said. “I didn’t even know how much we were getting so it’s a really big help with all the travels and it was great surfing against all these girls I wouldn’t normally get a chance to. It was an incredible experience since I haven’t before and to be in heats with the QS women is still something I’m at a loss for words on. All of the Juniors were ripping and it’s cool to start surfing against them early in my career.”
The Women’s QS heads straight to Punta Roca, La Libertad for the Copa El Salvador Impresionante for their next event beginning June 15-19.
Los Cabos Open of Surf Women’s QS6000 Final Results:
1 – Bronte Macaulay (AUS) 14.67 $10,000 – 6,000 points
2 – Dominic Barona (ECU) 13.90 $5,000 – 4,500 points
Los Cabos Open of Surf Women’s QS6000 Semifinal Results:
Heat 1: Dominic Barona (ECU) 13.60 def. Silvana Lima (BRA) 10.67
Heat 2: Bronte Macaulay (AUS) 12.83 def. Nikki Van Dijk (AUS) 5.67
Los Cabos Open of Surf Junior Men’s Semifinal Results:
Heat 1: Cole Houshmand (USA) 16.10, Griffin Colapinto (USA) 15.80, Kei Kobayashi (USA) 12.27, Luke Gordon (USA) 10.73
Heat 2: Eithan Osborne (USA) 14.07, Nolan Rapoza (USA) 13.50, Marco Mignot (FRA) 8.44, Kade Matson (USA) 6.00
Los Cabos Open of Surf Junior Women’s Semifinal Results:
Heat 1: Alyssa Lock (AUS) 13.57, Sophie McCulloch (AUS) 13.50, Macy Callaghan (AUS) 10.40, Zoe McDougall (HAW) 9.00
Heat 2: Summer Macedo (HAW) 18.00, Meah Collins (USA) 15.83, Maddie Peterson (USA) 10.40, Tiare Thompson (USA) 6.90
Los Cabos Open of Surf Women’s QS6000 Quarterfinal Results:
Heat 1: Silvana Lima (BRA) 16.50 def. Keely Andrew (AUS) 16.10
Heat 2: Dominic Barona (ECU) 11.60 def. Tatiana Weston-Webb (HAW) 11.33
Heat 3: Bronte Macaulay (AUS) 13.93 def. Holly Wawn (AUS) 9.67
Heat 4: Nikki Van Dijk (AUS) 11.40 def. Isabella Nichols (AUS) 10.43