Stephanie Gilmore (AUS), 20, reigning ASP Women’s World Champion and defending event champion, collected her second consecutive win in Peru today, defeating Silvana Lima (BRA), 24, to claim the Movistar Classic Mancora Peru presented by Rip Curl as well as the ratings lead on the ASP Women’s World Tour.
Event No. 6 of 8 on the 2008 ASP Women’s World Tour, the Movistar Classic Mancora Peru pres. by Rip Curl relocated from the primary venue in Mancora this morning to Piscina, an hour and a half south, where swell was running in the three-to-four foot (1.5 metre) range.
After building momentum throughout the day, Gilmore peaked in the Final, posting the highest heat total of the event, a 16.10 out of a possible 20, with brilliant flair and power on her backhand, to claim her second consecutive event title in Peru.
“I am so stoked right now,” Gilmore said. “I love coming to Peru. The waves are always really fun and the people are so passionate about their surfing. I came here confident that I could get a result and to come out on top is just fantastic.”
After stumbling with an equal 9th at the last ASP Women’s World Tour event in Sydney, Gilmore’s win today sees the young natural-footer back on top of the ASP Women’s World Tour ratings and on course to defend her ASP Women’s World Title.
“I think Sydney was good for me in that it motivated me to refocus on my primary goal which is to win another ASP Women’s World Tour,” Gilmore said. “Now that I’m ahead, I feel great, but I know there are still two more events and a lot can happen. I excited for Hawaii and am looking forward to a great end of the year.”
Lima, current No. 4 on the ASP Women’s World Tour, was in brilliant form all day, even netting an 7.70 out of a possible 10 in the Final, but it wasn’t enough to stop a rampaging Gilmore.
“I am very happy with my performance today,” Lima said. “I felt like I was surfing well and that my equipment was working really good. It is a shame that I couldn’t win in the Final, but I am happy with my result.”
Today’s runner-up finish marks Lima’s second in two events (she finished runner-up at the last event in Sydney), and the progressive natural-footer rockets up to 4th on the ASP Women’s World Tour.
“I really want to win an event one of these days, but Steph (Gilmore) was ripping,” Lima said. “I am still very happy with my result and my place in the ratings. I don’t know what Hawaii will hold for me, but I am looking forward to the events.”
Rebecca Woods (AUS), 24, current No. 7 on the ASP Women’s World Tour, scored the upset of the day, defeating former ratings leader and event favorite Sofia Mulanovich (PER), 25, in the Quarterfinals.
“Sofia (Mulanovich) is an incredible surfer and we were surfing at Lobitos this morning and she was surfing amazing, even with an injured foot,” Woods said. “Fortunately I got a couple of good ones off the bat and was able to maintain the lead. It’s a great win for me and my first Semifinals of the year so I’m stoked.”
Layne Beachley (AUS), 36, former seven-time ASP Women’s World Champion and current No. 3 on the ASP Women’s World Tour, opened up her Semifinal heat with a blistering 9.00 out of a possible 10, but was unable to halt the assault of eventual winner Gilmore.
“It’s frustrating when you open up the heat with a good wave and can’t back it up,” Beachley said. “I guess I am frustrated a bit more because I lost to Steph (Gilmore) and I had her and let her get away from me. It’s really frustrating.”
While it appears that Gilmore and Mulanovich are running away with the race for the ASP Women’s World Title, Beachley is still motivated to perform in Hawaii.
“I excited to get to Hawaii and I hope we get Sunset at 20 feet and Honolua at 15 feet,” Beachley said. “Hawaii is my old stomping ground and it’s where I feel like I’ve cemented a place for myself and I’m motivated by the desire to win and I’m looking forward to the winter.