O’Neill European team surfer and former European Champion Justin Mujica has claimed top honors in the 9th O’Neill Trophy in Tenerife, presented by La Caja de Canarias. The talented Portuguese surfer has been putting in solid performances all season, and was rewarded with 1st place in this ASP 2 Star WQS Men’s event after another excellent showing.
Unfolding in good 3 feet waves, the final heat saw Mujica up against local hero Jonathon Gonzales, young gun Marc Lacomare from France and Basque surfer Aritz Aranburu, currently 4th in the ratings. Motivated by the large crowd of spectators cheering from the beach, the four surfers entered into a fierce 30-minute game of one-upmanship in an effort to come out on top and walk away with the $ 5,000 winner’s cheque.
Justin Mujica eventually edged out the other 3 surfers following an extremely professional display in the water, scoring the highest wave of the finals and adopting a wave priority strategy to protect his lead for the rest of the heat. Emerging from the water, the Portuguese victor was clearly delighted with the result.
“It’s great to get this title! I’m so stoked!” he said. “I’m now looking forward to the other events as everything is going to get bigger and bigger. The points are going to be more important and it’s crucial for me to stay in the ASP Europe race for this year. I came to the Canary Islands with the will to win and it’s just what I needed. A big thank you to O’Neill, La Caja de Canarias and ASP for making this event possible.”
Now sitting in 3rd place in the ASP Europe ratings and with the end of the season in his sights, Mujica is determined to build on this latest success when he paddles out to compete in the remaining two ASP Europe events, both taking place in the warm waters of the Canary Islands.
For more information about the O’Neill surf team, visit www.oneilleurope.com