Lee Ann Curren Claims the ASP Grade-2 Rip Curl Pro Junior Mademoiselle
Lee Ann Curren (Biarritz, FRA), 19, claimed the ASP Grade-2 Rip Curl Pro Junior Mademoiselle today at Les Bourdaines in Seignosse. Curren, who defeated Justine Dupont (FRA), Pauline Ado (FRA) and Marie Dejean (FRA) in a 100% French final, took the best out of the good hollow four foot (1.2 meter) waves in the seventh event of the season.
Lee Ann Curren, reigning ASP European Women’s champion, who advanced through four heats in two days to reach the final encounter, won with a low 11.50 point score tally (out of a possible 20) after getting through three rounds in a row in the solid conditions. Posting a good 6.75 point ride (out of a possible 10) en route to victory, Curren led the final all the way to the end.
"I am super stoked," Curren said. "It took me some time to find a good wave but finding the good option was the key to win. There was a lot of current so I chose to ride a bigger board to paddle out faster. It was fun to try barrels and different moves."
With this victory, Curren wins the precious wildcard to compete against the ASP Top 17 in the Rip Curl Pro Mademoiselle, Stop No. 3 of 8 on the ASP Women’s World Tour, and jumps to 2nd on the regional ratings.
"I placed 2nd and 3rd in the last events and I really wanted to win this one," Curren said. "I am stoked to win the wildcard to compete in the Women’s World tour event. This is a fantastic opportunity!"
Runner-up Justine Dupont (Lacanau, FRA), 17, put an excellent effort in her final battle but was unable to find the scores needed to claim the title. Dupont posted a low 6.10 point heat tally (out of possible 20).
"I really enjoyed the conditions today," Dupont said. "Some waves were very big and gave me an adrenaline rush. I chose the outside section and I think it was the best option to score better but I paddled most of the 30-minute final."
Dupont is now No.4 one the ASP Junior ratings and increases her chance of qualifying for the 2009 ASP World Junior Championships (WJC) in Narabeen, Australia, where the end-of-the-year regional Top 2 will surf.
"I felt very good today because it was my birthday!" Dupont said. "To win this event would have been the best present I could get ! I am still very happy with this result because I get closer to the ASP Junior Top 3."
Pauline Ado (FRA), 17, who was very consistent this year, placed 3rd in the final and remains well in position on the regional ratings. Ado will still be chasing big results if she wants to stay in the race with ratings' leader Alizee Arnaud (FRA).
Arnaud, 18, could not counter fellow French surfers Lee Ann Curren and Justine Dupont and was eliminated in Semifinal 1 finishing with an unusual low 2.60 point heat tally (out of a possible 20). Arnaud will need a big result in the last Pro Junior in Carcavelos next October to secure her leading place in the regional ratings.
Europe’s best under-21 competitors will meet next at Carcavelos in Portugal from October 17 to 19 for an ASP Grade-2 Pro Junior, final event of the 2008 ASP European Women’s Pro Junior tour.
The ASP Top 17 will meet tomorrow, Tuesday, August 28 for the kick off of the Rip Curl Pro Mademoiselle at Les Bourdaines in Seignosse.
For more on Lee Ann, check out our sister mag Cooler's recent full-blown interview plus video footage: Cooler's Lee Ann Curren Interview.