And the rollercoaster ride that is the 2016 WSL tour continues….
Seriously, at this point, does anybody have any clue who will win the final two events of the year?
In case you missed it, Hawaiian pocket rocket Keanu Asing just claimed his first ever WSL CT event victory, taking down former world champ Gab Medina in the final of the Quiiksilver Pro France.
Asing had been a giant killer throughout the event, taking down Kelly Slater in the earlier rounds, and then rankings leader John John Florence in the semis before defeating Medina 13.94 to 7.00 in the final.
I’m stoked and this is a dream come true,” said Asing.
“The work’s not done yet but I hope I did something good for John (Florence) maybe and helped him with the title race. I’m over the moon — it’s so surreal. I’m super happy and I feel like I’m dreaming right now. I’m stoked to see my other Hawaiian competitor and childhood friend, Carissa (Moore), also win. I’ve never even made a QS (Qualifying Series) final so this is crazy. Having all my friends on the beach is even more ridiculously unbelievable.”
Prior to the event, Asing looked to be in serious doubt of re-qualifying for the CT tour in 2017 as he sat way down in 33rd position. Now he has climbed 12 places up to 21st position – just within the cutoff (22) for re-qualifying.
His victory means that the nine events of this year’s tour have been won by eight different surfers, with Matt Wilkinson being the only surfer to have two CT victories in 2016 (Snapper Rocks and Bells).
However, it is looking more likely that it will be a two horse race for this year’s world title, with Florence and Medina breaking away from the rest of the CT pack.
Florence holds just a 2500 point margin over Medina for the yellow jersey, with these final two stops in Portugal and Hawaii sure to be a very interesting affair.
QUIKSILVER PRO FRANCE FINAL RESULTS:
1- Keanu Asing (HAW) 13.94
2- Gabriel Medina (BRA) 7.00
QUIKSILVER PRO FRANCE SEMIFINAL RESULTS:
SF 1: Keanu Asing (HAW) 16.94 def. John John Florence (HAW) 16.07
SF 2: Gabriel Medina (BRA) 17.83 def. Kolohe Andino (USA) 15.03
WSL Men’s Top 5 (after Quiksilver Pro France):
1. John John Florence (HAW) 48,150
2. Gabriel Medina (BRA) 45,450
3. Matt Wilkinson (AUS) 38,250
4. Jordy Smith (ZAF) 35,700
5. Kolohe Andino (USA) 32,150