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Bianca Buitendag Upsets World No 1 on way to Semis at Vans US Open of Surfing

July 31st, 2015
Bianca Buitendag in action at the Vans US Open of Surfing where she reached the Semifinals on Thursday  Image: WSL / Morris

Bianca Buitendag in action at the Vans US Open of Surfing where she reached the Semifinals on Thursday  Image: WSL / Morris

Beyrick de Vries Advances to Last 24 in Men’s Event

Huntington Beach, CA/USA (Thursday, July 30, 2015) – Bianca Buitendag caused a huge upset on Thursday by eliminating two-time WSL Champion Carissa Moore (HAW) in the Quarterfinals at the Vans US Open of Surfing, stop no. 6 on the 2015 Samsung Galaxy World Surf League (WSL) Women’s Championship Tour (CT).

What started as a low-scoring affair in the one metre waves at Huntington Beach ended with an exciting exchange that unfolded in the final minutes. Moore posted a 5.60 but the South African netted a 7.60 to steal the lead and take victory over the two-time event winner.

The result is Buitendag’s best ever at the US Open, marking the second time that she has eliminated the Hawaiian this season and will see Moore relinquish the Jeep rankings leader’s yellow jersey to Courtney Conlogue (USA).

“I was keeping my cool and being patient,” Buitendag said. “I’m not going to say I expected to be here, it’s pretty shocking for me and I’m stoked. The whole heat I was waiting, which was frustrating. That one wave popped up in the last two minutes and I was just dying to surf. I’m taking things one event at a time after a tough start to the year. I’m so blessed and I’m just going with it.”

Buitendag narrowly outpointed Coco Ho (HAW) in their Round 4 duel earlier in the day and faces a semi-final clash with close friend Johanne Defay (FRA) when competition resumes. Ranked No. 6 coming into the US Open, the 21-year-old from Victoria Bay will move into the Top 5 with four events left on the 2015 CT schedule.

The bottom half of the draw sees Huntington Beach local Conlogue take on Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS) after they defeated Malia Manuel (HAW) and Nikki van Dyk (AUS) in their respective Quarterfinal bouts.

In the QS10,000 Vans US Open of Surfing men’s event, Umhlanga’s Beyrick de Vries advanced to the last 24 when he finished second to a rampant Filipe Toledo (BRA), the current World No. 4 and defending event winner, in Round 2. While the super confident Brazilian surfed without a leash and took to the air at every opportunity, netting a pair of nine-point rides in the process, de Vries stuck with his powerful rail turns, earning the first excellent ride of the heat, an 8.17.

He then used the priority system intelligently to add a 7.77 before clinching the runner-up berth with an 8.34 that eliminated third and fourth placed Granger Larsen (HAW) and Caio Ibelli (BRA) from the event.

De Vries, the only South African in the men’s draw, will be up against Miguel Pupo (BRA) and Maxime Huscenot (FRA) in a three-man Round 3 encounter where the winner progresses directly to the Quarterfinals. Those placing second and third will contest man-on-man Round 4 heats with the winner advancing and the loser ousted from the event in equal 9th place overall.

Competition will continue today, starting at approximately 5pm CAT with Men’s Round 3 followed by the Men’s Pro Junior Quarterfinals where South Africa’s Dylan Lightfoot (Jeffreys Bay) and Shane Sykes (Salt Rock) will take on HB local standout Kanoa Igarashi (USA) and Barbados based Joshua Burke (BRB) in Heat 4.

The Vans US Open of Surfing runs from July 25 through August 2, 2015 and is webcast LIVE via WorldSurfLeague.com and VansUSOpenofSurfing.com.

Each year, the Vans US Open of Surfing features the best in the world tearing up the storied break at Huntington Beach. Along with competitions for skate and BMX and dozens of on-site sponsors, the nine-day festival features four separate surf contests, including Junior Tour contests for men and women, a high-stakes men’s Qualifying Series battle, and a women’s Championship Tour contest for the Top 17.

Women’s Quarterfinal Results:
QF 1: Johanne Defay (FRA) 13.80 def. Lakey Peterson (USA) 10.14
QF 2: Bianca Buitendag (ZAF) 11.10 def. Carissa Moore (HAW) 10.60
QF 3: Courtney Conlogue (USA) 16.43 def. Malia Manuel (HAW) 15.20
QF 4: Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS) 14.26 def. Nikki Van Dijk (AUS) 10.03

Women’s Round 4 Results:
Heat 1: Johanne Defay (FRA) 14.00 def. Alessa Quizon (HAW) 10.60
Heat 2: Bianca Buitendag (ZAF) 11.10 def. Coco Ho (HAW) 10.63
Heat 3: Courtney Conlogue (USA) 12.83 def. Tatiana Weston-Webb (HAW) 10.33
Heat 4: Nikki Van Dijk (AUS) 14.97 def. Silvana Lima (BRA) 12.10

Women’s Semifinal Match-Ups:
SF 1: Johanne Defay (FRA) vs. Bianca Buitendag (ZAF)
SF 2: Courtney Conlogue (USA) vs. Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS)

Men’s Round 2 Results:
Heat 1: Adam Melling (AUS) 17.50, Joan Duru (FRA) 16.70, Patrick Gudauskas (USA) 13.77, Tiago Pires (PRT) 9.23
Heat 2: Michael Rodrigues (BRA) 13.74, Nathan Yeomans (USA) 13.70, Michael Dunphy (USA) 12.53, Santiago Muniz (ARG) 10.04
Heat 3: Kanoa Igarashi (USA) 17.50, Marco Fernandez (BRA) 12.96, Alejo Muniz (BRA) 12.73, Parker Coffin (USA) 9.43
Heat 4: Timmy Reyes (USA) 15.27, Carlos Munoz (CRI)13.97, Nathan Hedge (AUS) 12.87, Ian Gouveia (BRA) 12.07
Heat 5: Freddy Patacchia (HAW) 17.43, Ryan Callinan (AUS) 14.57, Ramzi Boukhiam (MAR) 10.50, Heitor Alves (BRA) 8.20
Heat 6: Hiroto Ohhara (JPN) 16.50, Mitch Crews (AUS) 15.00, Davey Cathels (AUS) 12.57, Steven Pierson (PYF) 4.50
Heat 7: Filipe Toledo (BRA) 18.20, Beyrick De Vries (ZAF) 16.54, Granger Larsen (HAW) 15.20, Caio Ibelli (BRA) 13.87
Heat 8: Miguel Pupo (BRA) 14.10, Alex Ribeiro (BRA) 13.64, Connor O’Leary (AUS) 12.83, Cooper Chapman (AUS) 12.10
Heat 9: Maxime Huscenot (FRA) 13.20, Aritz Aranburu (ESP) 11.90, Frederico Morais (PRT) 11.37, Jadson Andre (BRA) 8.74
Heat 10: Dion Atkinson (AUS) 17.00, Charles Martin (GLP) 13.54, Adrian Buchan (AUS) 11.93, Krystian Kymerson (BRA) 9.14
Heat 11: Kolohe Andino (USA) 16.60, Tomas Hermes (BRA) 11.57, Jack Freestone (AUS) 8.66, Nat Young (USA) 6.00 INT
Heat 12: Billy Stairmand (NZL) 13.10, Tanner Hendrickson (HAW) 12.07, Dane Reynolds (USA) 11.83, Joshua Moniz (HAW) 10.67

Men’s Round 3 Match-Ups:
Heat 1: Adam Melling (AUS), Nathan Yeomans (USA), Marco Fernandez (BRA)
Heat 2: Michael Rodrigues (BRA), Joan Duru (FRA), Kanoa Igarashi (USA)
Heat 3:Tim Reyes (USA), Mitch Crews (AUS), Freddy Patacchia (HAW)
Heat 4: Hiroto Ohhara (JPN), Carlos Munoz (CRI), Ryan Callinan (AUS)
Heat 5: Filipe Toledo (BRA), Alex Ribeiro (BRA), Aritz Aranburu (ESP)
Heat 6: Miguel Pupo (BRA), Beyrick De Vries (ZAF), Maxime Huscenot (FRA)
Heat 7: Dion Atkinson (AUS), Tanner Hendrickson (HAW), Kolohe Andino (USA)
Heat 8: Billy Stairmand (NZL), Charles Martin (GLP), Tomas Hermes (BRA)

ENDS

About the World Surf League
The World Surf League (WSL) organizes the annual tour of professional surf competitions and broadcasts each event live at WorldSurfLeague.com where you can experience the athleticism, drama and adventure of competitive surfing — anywhere and anytime it’s on. The WSL sanctions and operates the following tours: the Junior Tour, Longboard Tour, the Qualifying Series (QS), the Big Wave Tour and the crown jewel of the sport, the WSL Championship Tour (CT) which determines the sport’s undisputed world champions. The organization is headquartered in Santa Monica, California with Commercial Offices in New York. The offices are supported by regional centers in Africa, Asia, Australasia, Europe, Hawaii, North America and South America.

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Contact: Colin Fitch – Operations Manager
Tel: 021 534 5738
Email: cfitch@worldsurfleague.com

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