Stephanie Gilmore

Stephanie Gilmore (AUS), 21, has claimed her third consecutive ASP Women’s World Title today, making history as the only surfer ever to win the prestigious crown each year they have competed at the elite ASP World Tour level (men’s or women’s).

The clinching was somewhat unexpected as today’s competition began with six surfers in contention for the 2009 ASP Women’s World Title. With each heat advancement and the narrowing of the field at the Gidget Pro Sunset Beach, Event No. 6 of 7 on the 2009 ASP Women’s World Tour, the irrepressible Gilmore navigated her way to her third ASP Dream Tour Title.

“It’s surreal to win for a third time,” Gilmore said. “It’s amazing! I woke up this morning and knew it was going to be a good day. The waves were building and you sort of get that fuzzy feeling throughout the day. I really don’t even know what to think about it. I just want to thank everyone for the support that I’ve had throughout the whole year.”

Gilmore, who was focused on preparing for the Final at the Gidget Pro Sunset Beach, had remained intentionally aloof to the ASP Women’s World Title possibilities on the final day of competition, and was surprised when informed she had clinched the historic crown.

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Gidget Pro Sunset Beach

A massive swell in the 15–to-18-foot (5-6 metre) range has slammed in to Oahu’s North Shore and has forced event officials to call the Gidget Pro Sunset Beach, Event No. 7 of 8 on the 2009 ASP Women’s World Tour, off for today.

“Of all the places in the world, this is one where you call a contest off because it’s ‘too big’ rather than ‘too small’,” Randy Rarick, Vans Triple Crown Contest Director, said. “We’ve got 15-to-18-foot surf conditions that are expected to build throughout the day, and it’s closing out Sunset Beach so obviously too big for competition. It will be a day for Waimea today. We’re off tomorrow for Thanksgiving, and this swell should be slowly declining throughout the next several days so we’ll look to catch the backside of it on Friday.”

Surfline.com, official foreers for the Vans Triple Crown, are calling swells to remain strong over the next several days but gradually decline from today’s peak.

The Gidget Pro Sunset Beach represents the second stop on the highly coveted Vans Triple Crown Series and the sixth of seven events on the ASP Women’s World Tour, playing a crucial role in surfers’ quests for requalification for a spot amongst the elite in 2010.

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Joel Centeio

Patience and faith in his home break of Haleiwa delivered local boy Joel Centeio the biggest victory of his career today, winning the Reef Hawaiian Pro in 6- to 8-foot surf with a late barrel ride and only the mandatory two waves to his credit.

Joel, 26, came from the very first round, winning all seven heats he contested. He now takes an early lead on the Vans Triple Crown of Surfing presented by Rockstar Energy Drink series ratings. His win today earned him $20,000. If he can stay the course and win the Vans Triple Crown series title, it will pay another $50,000 as well as a $10,000 custom Nixon watch.

Runner-up in the final was Florida’s CJ Hobgood, third was Australian Jay "Bottle" Thompson, 27, and fourth was Tahiti’s Alain Riou. Hobgood and Thompson were always within striking distance - requiring less than a 7.0 point ride to turn the tables - but Haleiwa chose to favor her own.

While the win catapulted Centeio from 131st on the ASP World Qualifying Series (WQS) ratings to 51st, he still has no chance of qualifying for the 2010 ASP Dream Tour.

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