- 02 December 2013 | Surfing
Ezekiel Lau has secured the most important trophy of his career by winning the 2013 Vans World Cup of Surfing, at Sunset Beach, Hawaii.
Lau made a late tube-riding charge from behind to turn the tables on Damien Hobgood and Raoni Monteiro, in the latter half of the 30-minute final.
Fourth place was Frederico Morais, 21, who was announced the JN Chevrolet Rookie of the 2013 Vans Triple Crown.
Lau went on the hunt and found his way onto the biggest waves of the final that also offered high-scoring tube riding potential. His final scoreline was 15.5 points out of 20 (8.67 and 6.83 point rides).
"I can't believe it. I was building confidence through each heat. It seemed like things were going in my favor and I was just getting the waves I needed at the right time, so having that confidence going into the final felt good", says Lau.
"I needed something to boost my confidence a little, this year has been kind of rough. You know that $40K feels good! Making the final is great. To come out with a win puts me in a better spot".
Regarding his pole position on the Vans Triple Crown Series rankings: "Every year I think Hawaiian should be in (this position). This is Hawaii, this is our event. I am just happy to fly the flag for us and I am looking forward to it."
Lau's win earned him $40,000 and sees him close the year at 35th position on the ASP world rankings. While that doesn't qualify him for next year's elite World Championship Tour, it does guarantee him an excellent seed.
Raoni Monteiro secured a place in the 2014 ASP World Championship Tour, while Damien Hobgood will have to wait until the 2013 Pipe Masters showdown.
Morais was ecstatic with his Hawaiian winter performance. "It was my first Triple Crown so I had no expectations for Hawaii. I was going to come here and just do my job and have fun and try to climb the ranks to guarantee my position on the Prime events for next year.
2013 Vans World Cup of Surfing | Final
1. Ezekiel Lau (HAW); $40,000 - 15.50pts
2. Damien Hobgood (USA); $20,000 - 14.30pts
3. Raoni Monteiro (BRA); $12,000 - 12.33pts
4. Frederico Morais (PRT); $10,000 - 7.16pts