WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH, NC (WWAY) – World-class competition with excellent weather and surf conditions ruled this weekend’s 2017 Hobie and Salt Life SUP Surf Pro-Am in Wrightsville Beach.
After back-to-back qualifying heats and intense finals competition, Martin Letourneur from Saint-Malo, France, won the coveted and overall performance trophy, the Haywood Newkirk, Sr. All Waterman Award.
“I am very at home in these [Wrightsville Beach] conditions,” Letourneur said with a smile. “My home surf spot is always windy with small waves, so these conditions would actually be a very good day for us.”
The Wrightsville Beach SUP Surf Pro Am is a prelude to this week’s 7th Annual West Marine Carolina Cup, the world’s largest gathering of paddleboard athletes. The events will be at the Blockade Runner Beach Resort, April 18-23.
Hawaii’s Mo Freitas captured the top spot in the Men’s Professional Division for 2017. Following Letourneur’s second place finish in this division was Florida SUP Surfer Giorgio Gomez in third.
Fisher Grant, of Florida, and Bullet Obra, of Hawaii, the 2015 and 2016 All Waterman Award winners, did not secure a slot in the finals.
In the Women’s Professional Division, Florida’s Izzi Gomez bagged her third victory in a row. At 15 years old, Lexi Alston took the runner-up in this year’s Pro Division. Hobie Team Rider, and North Carolina local April Zilg took third place ahead of Florida native Kristin Moyer. Kristin won the Women’s Amateur division.
The most inspirational performance in the Women’s Pro division came from Tanvi Jagadish. Tanvi held her own and caught waves on a board completely new to her. She earned third in the Amateur division.
New to this year’s event was the traditional Glider division, with surfboards 10’6” and longer. Three-time world champion longboarder Colin McPhillips took the win in this division, as well as in the Longboard SUP open.
Find the full list of winners at www.wbsupsurfproam.com/results.html