HONOLULU, Waikiki took care of her own today, serving up a win for local surfer Kelia Moniz, 16 in the Gidget Pro and Rabbit Kekai Toes on the Nose pro longboard events, respectively. Home grown knowledge played an integral part as hip-high waves and a lazy full tide brought it all down to wave selection and footwork finesse. Moniz won $2,000.
Hawaii surfers faired well overall, filling three of four places in both finals. But in both events the runner-up position went to Southern Californians; in the Gidget Pro it was 32-year-old Cori Schumacher.
The final of the women's Gidget Pro hit the water first and the women benefited from the last pulse of waves before the high tide slowed the break of Queen's right down. The ladies enjoyed a consistent exchange of scores. Moniz chose to position herself on the inside of the break, picking up several long rides that allowed her to display graceful footwork and gravity-defying noserides. In contrast, Schumacher blazed her way through from the outside, opting for a more progressive, power repertoire.
The final scoreline was close, Moniz winning with a two wave total of 14.1 points out of 20; Schumacher was second on 13.4 points; Ashely Quintal was third with 12.3; and Haunani Kane was fourth with 10.7 points.
"Finally, a win," said Moniz, who has been trying to take the honors here for four years. "I've gotten second quite a lot really, so I'm very excited.
"I stayed on the inside and that worked to my advantage. I was told by my dad to stay on the inside and ride under the peak and it worked out."
It's definitely worth listening to your dad if it's someone like Tony Moniz, a former pro surfer himself who could surf Waikiki blindfolded.
$8,000 GIDGET PRO WOMEN'S LONGBOARD
1st: Kelia Moniz, HI, $2,000, 14.1 points
2nd; Cori Schumacher, CA, $1,000, 13.4 points
3rd: Ashley Quintal, HI, $900, 12.3 points
4th: Haunani Kane, HI, $700, 10.7 points
H1: Kelia Moniz (HI); Ashley Quintal (HI); Joy Monahan (HI); Megan Godinez (HI)
H2: Cori Schumacher (USA); Haunani Kane (HI); Lindsay Steinriede (USA); Candice
photos Janos Schmidt