Alan Muñoz and Anais Velis make history for Chile

July 1, 2019 | Bodyboarding
Alan Muñoz: he stole the show at Iquique's Punto Dos | Photo: Jimenez/APB

Alan Muñoz and Anais Velis have taken out the 2019 Bellavista Iquique Pro, in Chile.

The last day of competition got underway in playful six-foot waves at Punta Dos. The conditions allowed riders to choose both left and right-handers.

The 5-Star Qualifying Series event also had its share of controversy.

Tristan Roberts, one of the standouts of the whole event, was eliminated in the semifinals by Brazilian bodyboarder David Barbosa.

The South African started the heat well with a perfect 10-point ride for two barrels followed by a backflip. However, a few minutes later, Roberts was penalized by an interference.

The judges' decision caused a tumult on social media and among fans who were watching the heat on site. So, what did exactly happen?

Barbosa was sitting deep at Punta Dos with priority when a split peak came through.

Roberts chose to take the right-hander, while the Brazilian opted for the left-hand option. Roberts committed to the right, assuming that Barbosa would go left.

However, Barbosa ended up taking the right-hand wave from a very deep take-off position and, even though he barely made to the point where Roberts took the wave, the judges called an interference.

Chico Garritano, the APB head judge, cited rule 5.5.06 of the APB Rule Book to support his team's decision.

"Barbosa had first priority and chose to use that priority to go right. Roberts interfered with Barbosa's ability to ride the wave by taking off on that wave too. So, it was a clear drop-in by Roberts," stated Garritano.

Anais Velis: the first female Chilean bodyboarder to win an APB World Tour event | Photo: Jimenez/APB

Chilean Domination

As a result, David Barbosa advanced through to the final against Muñoz.

The Chilean played his tactics and found the winning wave he needed to celebrate the trophy in front of his fans.

"It was a hard-fought final. My first wave was important to face the rest of the heat. I followed my strategy and waited for the perfect wave that would give me a good score," explained Alan Muñoz.

"This is a very important event for all Chileans and the world tour. We had a spectacular contest from start to finish. The locals showed there's high-performance bodyboarding here, too."

On the women's side, Anais Velis also made history for her country after defeating Japanese powerhouse, Sari Ohhara.

She is the first female Chilean bodyboarder to win an APB World Tour event. Veli simply couldn't speak as tears poured down her face.

"I am feeling emotional. I had no expectations for this event. It's overwhelming," concluded Anais Velis in tears.

2019 Bellavista Iquique Pro | Finals

1. Alan Muñoz (CHI) 18.15
2. David Barbosa (BRA) 15.75

1. Anais Velis (CHI) 15.00
2. Sari Ohhara (JAP) 11.90