- Brazilians Calmon and Batista were the most outstanding athletes of the day. Both athletes surpassed the combined 12 points.
- In difficult conditions of wind and sectioned waves, the first day of competition took place.
With a large number of athletes supporting their teams and with the community of Santa Catalina’s excitement by the arrival of Olympic-level competitors, the first day of the Pan American Surfing Games (PASG) Panama 2023 began today, Saturday April 22, with the female longboard surfers.
This discipline combines elements such as the elegance of movements and the physical dexterity of the athletes, when walking on and turning on these boards that exceed 9 feet (3 meters) in length.
About the competition
The story began at about 2pm Panama time, just as the tide was beginning to rise, the ideal conditions for the performance of athletes, an element conditioned by the appearance of the wind.
With these two factors, the first exchange of waves began between Evelyn Gontier from Argentina, a former shortboard surfer and with repeated podiums in Argentine longboard tournaments; Guatemalan Alejandra Said; and the Panamanian Layla Brady. The woman from Mar del Plata made the difference with a wave of five points, presenting a hang five to add 8.67 final points.
In the next confrontation and with one of the highest combinations of the round, the Peruvian Ana Camila Kaspar (10.16 pts), bronze medalist at the 2022 Pan American Surfing Games, appeared.
“The waves were super tricky and a bit hollow, but some of them had a nice wall. The idea is to reach the final and compete with the best. Whoever catches the best wave, let them take it”, said Kaspar.
One of the surprises of the event was the elimination of the 2022 finalist, Coral Bonilla from Mexico, who was in third place by only 54 tenths (5.87 combined), a position snatched by Iana Ramírez from Puerto Rico (5.94 pts).
In first place in this heat and as one of the highlights of the day, the local surfer from Las Flores beach, Sindy Portillo from El Salvador, finished with a combined 9.33 pts.
“I am super happy, but at first I was very nervous, adapting a little to the wave, but I had my whole team outside cheering me and that motivated me a lot. The conditions were tough, but I’m used to surfing in the country of perfect rights,” Sindy said.
Atalanta Batista from Brazil, also a finalist in Venao in 2022, was another of the best athletes on this first day (heat 4). The longboarder had a great display in all her waves, combining long hang five and hang ten. With elegance in her movements and excellent reading of her condition, she obtained the best wave of the day (8.17 pts) and the best accumulated score (12.84 pts).
In Heat 5, we were able to enjoy the surfing of the defending champion, Chloé Calmon from Brazil, a heat where we were able to enjoy perfect leg crossings to make cuts in complicated wave reforms, added to the long hang ten of this outstanding athlete part of the tour world. Her scores were 5.83 pts and 5.17 pts.
For second place in this Heat, the dispute was between Samantha Wilson from Chile, and Michelle Soriano from Ecuador; The Chilean reaffirmed her position with her last wave (change of direction in complicated reforms and closing with a hang five), thus ensuring her passage to round two.
In the following Heat, the Canadian athletes Olivia Stokes and Mathea Olin dominated, with long rides in search for classic maneuvers (hang five), with good changes of direction, using the edges of their boards well and reading the wave well, using their reforms for a total of 9.77 combined points for Olivia and 7 points for Mathea.
María Fernanda Reyes from Peru (Heat 7) started aggressively, and at the moment of taking the wave, she knew that the wind could affect her performance. During her whole heat she performed nice leg crosses during cutbacks and cross-stepping to the nose of the longboard, as she managed to show off her best surfing. The Peruvian obtained first place in the heat and she advanced to the next round (4 and 5.83 pts).
At the end of the day, the wind made the condition more complicated, at that point there was not much wall in the waves and the athletes had to look for reforms to present maneuvers (highly sectioned waves). Agustina Pellizzari from Argentina managed to advance in first place with a combined 5.43 pts.
Tomorrow, Sunday April 22, the competition continues with Round 2 of the Women’s Longboard, to later crown the first Pan American champions of the event after the exciting Men’s and Women’s SUP Technical Race, in which athletes must navigate with their boards. rowing through a circuit in front of Santa Catalina.
The event’s first call is at 6:30am for a possible 7:00am start. Follow the live webcast and results at www.pasasurf.org.
The XVI edition of the Pan American Surfing Games is possible thanks to
- Autoridad de Turismo de Panamá
- Psycho Tuna
- Amstel Ultra
- Canal COS
- COPA Airlines
We also thank our Media Partners Surfing Republica, PXSports and Super Deportes