Rafael Teixeira: he won Santa Cruz with no major sponsors | Photo: Prefontaine/O'Neill

Rafael Teixeira has claimed the 2015 O'Neill Coldwater Classic, held at Steamer Lane, Santa Cruz, California.

The Brazilian surfer defeated three US riders in the decisive final - Derek Peters, Randy Bonds, and Chris Waring. Teixeira, 22, has no major sponsor, but he takes home $8,000 and 1,500 rankings points.

"I'm really stoked. This is the best day of my life. This is my first QS win, and I just thank God, my family and friends, and just everyone who supported me both here and at home," expressed Rafael Teixeira.

"I've loved my first time here and to win, I just don't know the words for this moment. It was great dropping those two good waves, and I just wanted to try my best in the final so this is incredible."

Teixeira opened his account with a nine-point ride and later backed it up with a 7.10. The underdog left Bonds and Waring in a combination situation.

"I don't even know what was going on; I was just feeling really good this whole event. I love my backhand surfing, and this right has been so fun. When waves came, I wanted to give it my all and earn some good scores off my turns.

"I'm excited to return home but to win here has been amazing after training so hard for this contest. My mom and grandma support me a lot and with that support I can travel and now just want to do well for my family going forward."

2015 O'Neill Coldwater Classic | Final

1. Rafael Teixeira (BRA) 16.10
2. Derek Peters (USA) 13.90
3. Randy Bonds (USA) 5.97
4. Chris Waring (USA) 4.00