Alejo Muniz

Alejo Muniz (BRA), Rafael Pereira (VEN), Leandro Usuna (ARG), Analí Gómez (PER), Camila Cassia (BRA) and Gabriela Leite (BRA) entered the history books today, Friday, December 11, in Montoya beach, after winning the 1st South American Beach Games medals in the Surfing Competition.

It was a short but intense day 3, with only two finals being held in 3 foot, glassy right-handers.

The Women’s final went to the water first with a strong start for Brazilian, Camila Cassia but then, Peruvian Analí Gómez found the right waves, and took the lead after scoring a 5.00 and a 6.33 to win the gold. Cassia took the silver and Leite the bronze.

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John John Florence

Competitors reveled in the gently groomed four-to-six foot (1.5 – 2 metre) barrels of the Banzai Pipeline today as the remaining nine Round 2 heats of the Billabong Pipe Masters were completed before competition was called off for the day.

Event No. 10 of 10 on the 2009 ASP World Tour, the Billabong Pipe Masters marks the third and final stop of the Vans Triple Crown (an ASP Specialty Series) and the Hawaiians ruled the day’s proceedings, taking six wins in nine heats.

John John Florence (HAW), 16, wildcard and youngest the competitor in the Billabong Pipe Masters, was dominant once again today, effortlessly threading both the Backdoor rights and the Pipeline lefts with pancahe and aplomb to net the day’s highest heat total, an 18.90 out of a possible 20, to eliminate ASP World No. 27, Heitor Alves (BRA), 27.

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Aritz Aranburu

Round 1 of the Billabong Pipeline Masters, Event No. 10 of 10 on the 2009 ASP World Tour, commenced today in clean six-to-ten foot (2 – 3 metre) waves at the Banzai Pipeline.

The third and final event in the Vans Triple Crown (an ASP Specialty Series), the Billabong Pipeline Masters plays host to two dramatic story arcs: the showdown for the 2009 ASP World Title and the requalification race for the 2010 ASP Dream Tour. Amidst the world’s best surfers exists a spattering of Pipeline specialists, making the competition field particularly challenging to navigate.

Michael Picon (FRA), 30, current ASP World No. 39, is in need of an impressive result in the final event of the year to secure his position amongst the world’s elite in 2010. Today, the Frenchman put the rest of the draw on notice, first eliminating wildcard Manoa Drollet (PYF) before posting the highest heat total of the event, a 19.76 out of a possible 20, for a brilliant backhand tube-riding approach to take out Josh Kerr (AUS), 25, in the final heat of the day.

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