BIARRITZ, France — O‘ahu’s Carissa Moore, 15, won the Roxy Pro Junior, an Association of Surfing Professionals Grade-2 Pro Junior, after defeating South Africa’s Bianca Buitendag, and France’s Justine Dupont and Joahnne Defay at La Cote des Basques in Biarritz, yesterday. Moore, who was surfing in her first contest ever in France, dominated the event with great levels of surfing, defeating reigning ASP European Women’s Champion Lee-Ann Curren of France on her way to the title.
Moore, who was one of two international surfers in the event, posted several high scores throughout the event including an impressive 18.80 point heat tally (out of a possible 20) in her opening heat, and another excellent 17.50 point heat score in the Quarterfinals.
“I am so happy to win this event,” Moore said. “It is my first time in France and it was a great event. I had some good scores and eventually won the final.”
Moore, who ended up winning the final ahead of other event standout Buitendag, left no chance to European favorites in the Roxy Pro Junior and dealt well with the pressure.
“I was pretty nervous during the heat because the battle was hard with Bianca Buitendag and Justine Dupont until the very end,” Moore said. “I did my best to catch the best waves, to watch my positioning and be creative but still had lots of fun.”
Buitendag, 15, placed second in the Roxy Pro Junior for her first appearance ever in an ASP European event. Buitendag, who put on an impressive performance throughout the event, lacked good waves during the final and could not catch up with Moore.
“I am stoked, this is the best result of my life,” Buitendag said. “It was very challenging to surf with the best including Carissa (Moore).”
Buitendag, who posted a 17.00 point heat tally in the quarterfinals, was the event’s second best scorer behind Moore and is already focused on the next event she will attend at home.
“I am stoked to get back home with this runner-up finish,” Buitendag said. “It is a great confidence boost and I am sure it will help for the next contest in South Africa next week.”
Dupont and Defay were the two French representatives in the final. Dupont, who will be competing in the quarterfinals of the Roxy ASP Women’s World Longboard Championships today, was in good form yesterday and got through to the last heat of the event after besting current ASP European Women’s Junior leader Canelle Bulard in the semifinals.
Lea Mengual, who finished equal 5th in the event, missed her ticket for the final when she was defeated by Buitendag and Defay. Mengual, who has been among Europe’s leading young surfers, is a contender for the 2008 ASP European Women’s Junior title and is looking froward to bettering this result.
“It was a paddle battle all heat long and I was not fast enough,” Mengual said. “I am still stoked to reach the semis and I hope I will do better this summer.”
For full results, see today’s Scoreboard on opposite page.