LOBITOS, Piura / Peru 2012) - Sunny skies, offshore winds and perfect waves in the 2-3 foot range (1 meter) were the conditions present at the lefthand pointbreak of Lobitos, in Piura, Peru to begin the ASP 6-Star Movistar Women's Pro presented by Rip Curl and Petrolera Sapet.
Alessa Quizon (HAW) began by setting the day's standard, followed by last year's event winner, Dominic Barona (ECU), who is also defending her ASP South America Women's title.
“I think it was great to have this event here in Lobitos, where the waves are at an international level,” said Dominic Barona. “I feel very comfortable surfing these lefts and it was really important for me to qualify into the next round because the waves are going to get a lot better and we're sure to have quite a show in store for Lobitos. All of the competitors are surfing at such a high level and it's motivating us to do our best in this event.”
Barona scored an 11.65 heat wave total in her victory over Peruvian surfers Mara Garcia and Carolina Thun in Heat 5 of the Round of 60. Surfers representing twelve different countries are competing for $40,000 dollars and 3,500 points for the ASP World Women´s Star ranking to try to become one of the Top-17 surfers that make onto the 2013 ASP Women's World Tour.
The odds-on favorite to win the event is the 2004 ASP World Champion, and local surfer, Sofia Mulanovich (PER). Anxiously awaiting her Wednesday morning heat, Mulanovich will face Nicola Atherton (AUS), Adriana Cano (VEN) and Anali Gomez (PER), who won the ASP South America title in 2010.
“It's an honor to be in Lobitos,” said Mulanovich. “I have a very special affection for this beach. I get really sentimental when I remember this beach because I experienced one of the most important moments of my life here.”
Another competitor to start the Movistar Women's Pro off well was Kirby Wright, younger sister of WCT athletes, Owen and Tyler Wright.
“This is my first time here in Peru and it's been a great experience so far,” said Kirby Wright. “The waves are really good and I'm excited to get into the next round in such an important event. I hear tomorrow (Wednesday) it's going to get bigger and better, so it's great to be able to take advantage of such good conditions in Lobitos.”
The forecast shows an increase in swell for the upcoming days, peaking out over the 5-7 foot range (2 meters). Lobitos is one of the most perfect waves in a country full of perfect lefthanders and all of the surfers are excited to end the competition in epic conditions for the final day on Saturday.
The 2012 ASP Movistar Women's Pro is presented by Rip Curl and Petrolera Sapet and is brought to you by Nosotras, Sony, Powerade, Tasa, Alojamiento Peru Hosting, Barena, Star Peru, Burn, Ron Cartavio, San Jose Rent a Car, Tablas Wayo Whilar, Xtreme Fujita Japan, Cirujano Roberto Valdivia, Mapfre Seguros and Estructuras Aro
Courtois Straight Through to the Semis
– Pauline Courtois leads after first day