Ayaka Suzuki crowned 2018 APB Women's World Tour champion

October 9, 2018 | Bodyboarding
Ayaka Suzuki: the 2018 APB Women's World Tour champion | Photo: APB

Ayaka Suzuki is your 2018 APB Women's World Tour champion. The Japanese secured her maiden world title at Praia do Norte, in Nazaré, Portugal.

The 23-year-old rider conquered the first world bodyboarding title of her career and the first ever for Japan, just two years before the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.

However, things didn't get easy for the Japanese wonder woman. Suzuki only sealed the deal in the last heat of the season.

After watching Alexandra Rinder winning the Nazaré Pro, Ayaka knew she would have to beat the Canarian in a surf-off to clinch the world title.

In the superheat, Suzuki kept her composure and found the best waves on offer in the pounding shore break. The Japanese had made her bodyboarding dream come true.

"I can't believe it. It's a dream for 15 years. I don't have any more words to express what I feel. I had never been in a superheat. It was so exciting," said Suzuki in tears.

"I had never felt this pressure before. My coach told me I was in a position like I've never been before, so he just told me to do my bodyboarding."

Ayaka Suzuki: she was the best female bodyboarder in 2018 | Photo: APB

The newly crowned women's world bodyboarding champion also revealed that next year she will be focusing more on free surfing.

But who is Ayaka Suzuki? Her mother taught her to bodyboard when she was only eight years old. Later, she was inspired by Chigusa Nishiyama, a Japanese big wave bodyboarder.

Suzuki's local and favorite surf break is Chigasaki, a spot in the Kanagawa Prefecture. She won her first professional event at the age of 15 and became the youngest rider to turn pro.

Ayaka is a Japan Professional Bodyboarding Association (JPBA) Tour champion. When she's not riding the boogie board, Ayaka works as a personal trainer.

2018 APB Women's World Tour | Final Surf-Off

1. Ayaka Suzuki (JAP) 7.65
2. Alexandra Rinder (CNY) 5.20