Billabong Pro Junior 

Two Brazilian surfers are the winners of the 2008 Billabong Pro Junior Series in Chile. Ricardo dos Santos scored the only 10 point ride of the event to finish with the best total heat score, 19,75 points out of possible 20. In second place finished another Brazilian, Alex Ribeiro with Gabriela Leite winning the Women’s event. She won the first event in Peru last year and now she is in first place for two spots in 2009 World Pro Junior in Australia.

The next two events will be in Brazil, one in Torres (RS) in April and the last one in Camburi (SP) in September. The best five male surfers and two female will be classified to 2009 World Pro Junior in Australia. The waves were again perfect today in Pichilemu, with 4-6 feet and with a beautiful sunny day.

“My tactic was wait for the best waves, you have to be lucky to find the good waves, like i had in the semi and in the final” said Ricardo dos Santos (17), who received 2.000 dollars offered by the 2008 Billabong Pro Junior Series.

“Was a big step for the World Pro Junior and a great honor to win this event. I think this was the best contest that I have competed in, with perfect waves for everybody, so i am very happy and I will be very determined to do well at the last two events”.

Ricardo dos Santos had a incredible performance in his first heat of this Sunday at Billabong Pro Junior in Pichilemu. First he surfed a great wave to received 9,75 points from judges and them he scored the only 10 points wave score of the event and the first 10 points score of his career, with two great tubes in the same wave to finish with 19,75 points out of possible 20, winning the heat against the surfer from Chile, Manuel Selman. “Was an excellent wave, i got two good barrels that i couldn’t find in the last two days” said Ricardo.

In the great final, the runner-up, Brazilian Alex Ribeiro (18) didn’t find the best waves but he was happy with his result. “I was hungry to win this event, but unfortunately i didn’t find the best waves in the final. Anyway, this second place is a very good way to start, now i just have to stay focus to the next events. This was a great event with great surfers and excellent waves every day, so I still happy with my result” said Alex.

In the second semi-final, two Billabong athletes had a great heat with Ricardo dos Santos winning the heat against Brazilian Peterson Crisanto (15) in the last seconds, “We are very happy with this excellent waves, this great event and with this beatiful performance of our Athletes, especially Ricardo, who always have a incredible performance in big waves and he proved today to be one of the great promises of Billabong” said Gustavo Belloc, Marketing Manager for Billabong Brazil.

Team Manager of Billabong Brazil, Zé Paulo, also celebrated the result of his work of many years in the preparation of Billabong Athletes, with two surfers moving to the semi-finals. “This is the result of years of investment by Billabong in our surfers and in our Trainning Center in Camburi. We had Pablo Paulino winning two times the World Pro Junior and now we have another two great surfers getting excellent results in Pro Junior events. Ricardo dos Santos is very good in big and barreling waves, he has a huge talent and he and Peterson will represent very well the Billabong Brazil in World Tour, starting with the WQS this year”.

Brazilian surfer Gabriela Leite (15) won the first Billabong Pro Junior event in Peru last year, and now did the same, winning again this year in Chile. “Another victory outside Brazil, i am very happy, and now i hope to get a spot in World Pro Junior next year because last year i was out. This was a great event, in the beginning I was with a little fear because of the big waves, but today the waves were fun and perfect to surf. Now my goal is go to Brazil and confirm my spot in the World Pro Junior in Australia next year” said Gabriela.

In second place was the surfer from Peru, Valeria Sole (16), who promised to compete in Brazil in the next two events. “I didn’t find the best waves and i fell a lot, so lacked a bit of experience for me, but anyway I will go confident to the next events in Brazil” said Valeria, who finish in fourth place last year in Peru.

A special presentation with the World Pro Junior Champions sponsored by Billabong, Brazilians Pablo Paulino and Pedro Henrique, and the Gol Air Show, closed the last day of competition in Chile. Brazilian Ricardo Wendhausen won an Air-Ticket Brazil-Chile with the best aerial. The Billabong Pro Junior Series for surfers with up to 20 years of age was a huge success primarily by the international quality of the long lefts of Punta de Lobos, Pichilemu and by the great performance of the surfers in the big waves of Chile.

Source: ASP World Tour