Peru: conquering the world of surfing

History has been made. Peru has conquered the 2011 Quiksilver ISA World Junior Surfing Championship, in a dramatic last-day recovery from fifth place in less than 24 hours. The Australian domination has been dethroned and the Peruvians take the second ISA event in a row.

The South American country has plenty of surfing talents and is capable of exceeding world standards. High quality surfing aided by deep knowledge of their hometown waves, were the foundations of their victory. Five surfers started the day, with four of them made it to the three division finals.

The seventh and final day of the event was held at Caballeros with solid and very consistent 8 to 10-foot waves all day long. Canelle Boulard from France won the Under 18 Girls division. "It's a dream come true," she said.

In the Under 16 Boys division, Brazilian Felipe Toledo put an end to the hopes of the locals after flying high once again to win a last minute final. He left Dylan Lightfoot from South Africa in second and Peruvians Joaquín del Castillo and Juninho Urcia in third and fourth respectively.

At that moment of the competition, the 3rd and 4th place of the Peruvians, was a bad scenario for the local team gold aspirations. But the fight wasn’t over.

An emotional Toledo, with tears in his eyes, said “I was dreaming about this and I did it, it’s just simply unbelievable! I want to thank all the Brazilian Team, my Dad who taught me how to surf and everybody who supports me. It was a tough final but I made it.”

The Under 18 final and most of the tournament in the U18 boys was dominated by Cristobal de Col from the beginning until the end. His backside was again in harmony with the big waves of Caballeros.

De Col won the championship with stunning moves and great timing, as part of his true power surfing. His victory secured the Peruvian Team gold medal.

“The Gold is Peruvian, the Cup stays at home,” said de Col.

“Many people told me this was my tournament and I felt it inside, I even dreamed about it, and now here I am. I’ve surfed all my life; it’s my source of fun and I know this is just the beginning of everything. This Gold is historic for my country and I’m happy for the teamwork we showed in the last days.”

The team final results were kept secret until the the Closing Ceremony. When the MC announced that the trophy would remain in Peru, the public went crazy and so did all the team members.

Final Team Standings

1. Peru (5123)
2. South Africa (4860)
3. Australia (4651)
4. Hawaii (4546)
5. USA (4164)
6. France (4113)
7. Brazil (4060)
8. Portugal (3505)
9. Tahiti (3393)
10. New Zealand (2810)
11. UK (2640)
12. Costa Rica (2505)
13. Japan (2357)
14. Argentina (2198)
15. Barbados (2128)
16. Ecuador (2034)
17. Mexico (1910)
18. Venezuela (1736)
19. Chile (1652)
20. Germany (1649)
21. Ireland (1488)
22. Puerto Rico (1390)
23. Uruguay (1156)
24. Jamaica (1064)
25. Italy (960)
26. Guatemala (652)
27. Morocco (340)

Peru has now been added to the list of Quiksilver ISA World Junior Surfing Champion nations:

2003 – Durban – Gold Medal: Brazilian Team
2004 – Papenoo – Gold Medal: Australian Team
2005 – Huntington Beach – Gold Medal: Hawaiian Team
2006 – Maresias – Gold Medal: Australian Team
2007 – Costa de Caparica – Gold Medal: Australian Team
2008 – Seignosse – Gold Medal: Australian Team
2009 – Salinas – Gold Medal: Australian Team
2010 – Auckland – Gold Medal: Australian Team
2011- Punta Hermosa – Gold Medal: Peruvian Team

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