Home > Contests, Girls Surfing, WSL > Fifth place for Bianca Buitendag as Courtney Conlogue wins Drug Aware Margaret River Women’s Pro in Australia

Fifth place for Bianca Buitendag as Courtney Conlogue wins Drug Aware Margaret River Women’s Pro in Australia

April 22nd, 2015
Bianca Buitendag (Victoria Bay, South Africa) cuts back at Main Break on her way to fifth place in the Drug Aware Margaret River Women’s Pro in Australia on Wednesday.  Image: © WSL / Cestari

Bianca Buitendag (Victoria Bay, South Africa) cuts back at Main Break on her way to fifth place in the Drug Aware Margaret River Women’s Pro in Australia on Wednesday.  Image: © WSL / Cestari

South African Bianca Buitendag (ZAF) placed equal fifth overall in the Drug Aware Margaret River Women’s Pro in Western Australia as Courtney Conlogue (USA) clinched victory at the third stop on the Samsung Galaxy World Surf League (WSL) Championship Tour (CT) on Wednesday.

With Main Break continuing to offer double overhead waves and stiff offshore winds organisers had no hesitation in getting the Quarterfinals underway this morning and the world’s best female surfers fought through an exciting Finals day.

Buitendag’s quarterfinal match-up with Malia Manuel (HAW) started slowly with the Hawaiian recording a pair of mid-range scores and the South African just a throw-away 0.57 in the first 20 minutes. A series of powerful sets rolling through the break saw the rest of the 30 minute heat produce a back and forth duel as Buitendag grabbed the lead with scores of 7.0 and then 7.60 to put Manuel into a combination situation.

But the Hawaiian kept her composure and answered back with a 5.13 and a 6.90. Needing 7.70 for the heat win and a berth in the semis, Manuel found a great wave in the dying minutes and finished her ride with a powerful re-entry to post an excellent 8.50.

Buitendag was unable to find the 7.81 she needed and was eliminated. Her fifth place result earned 5 200 points which combined with her 13th and ninth place results in the opening two events of the year saw the 21 year-old from Victoria Bay move up one spot in the WSL rankings to No. 11.

The Final produced an epic showdown with Conlogue claiming her third CT victory and ending the amazing run of form from two-time World Champion Carissa Moore (HAW).

“It’s just phenomenal,” said Conlogue. “Carissa’s been on such a stellar run and I was thinking, maybe I can end it. I had a bit of a tricky start to this event and was feeling out of rhythm. On the off days I just went surfing a lot and have a bunch of fun and I think that it got me all psyched and happy for the end of the event.”

The win today sees Conlogue steadily improve on her performance this year, having previously claimed fifth place on the Gold Coast and a third at Bells Beach. The result moves her to second place on the WSL rankings going into the fourth event of the year, the Oi Rio Pro next month.

Conlogue drew first blood in the Final for a modest score, a 5.33, and an early lead. An uncharacteristic priority mistake from Moore with 20 minutes remaining left Conlogue with her pick of the waves but Moore came back to take an inside wave, unload two big turns and earn an excellent 8.50. The Californian answered back with a big layback hack to reclaim the lead and then took a set wave for an excellent 8.43.

The Hawaiian was left without priority needing a 6.60 and found only a 4.63 at the six-minute mark. Conlogue had four minutes remaining to control the lineup and hold off the two-time World Champion and found a big righthander, delivering three solid terms to improve her scoreline with an 8.50, and take the win.

“I’ve spent a lot of time out here and I have great support,” said Conlogue. “This is our last stop on the Australian leg of the Tour and it’s been really amazing. Carissa is such an amazing talent and to be able to compete against her and all the other amazing talent is just wonderful and really pushes me to get better. The world title is everyone’s dream and I’m just going to try my best and keep surfing as well as I possibly can.”

The second-place finish today from Moore and her third consecutive final of 2015 sees her retain the Jeep leader yellow jersey and no. 1 spot on the rankings. Moore, who got the better of Tyler Wright (AUS) in both 2014 and 2013 to claim consecutive victories at Margaret River, defeated both Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS) and Tatiana Weston-Webb (HAW) before facing Conlogue in the Final.

“I’m so stoked with this result,” said Moore. “The waves were really good today and Courtney did an amazing job. She’s such a hard worker and I couldn’t be happier for her. It’s been an amazing Australian leg for me but I’m very excited to get back home. Thanks to everyone for putting on this event.”

Drug Aware Margaret River Pro Women’s Final Results:
1: Courtney Conlogue (USA) 16.93
2: Carissa Moore (HAW) 13.13

Drug Aware Margaret River Pro Women’s Semifinal Results:
SF 1: Carissa Moore (HAW) 14.73 def. Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS) 14.27
SF 2: Courtney Conlogue (USA) 17.53 def. Malia Manuel (HAW) 15.87

Drug Aware Margaret River Pro Women’s Quarterfinal Results:
QF 1: Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS) 13.84 def. Lakey Peterson (USA) 8.73
QF 2: Carissa Moore (HAW) 17.37 def. Tatiana Weston-Webb (HAW) 9.07
QF 3: Malia Manuel (HAW) 15.40 def. Bianca Buitendag (ZAF) 14.80
QF 4: Courtney Conlogue (USA) 15.70 def. Tyler Wright (AUS) 12.96

World Surf League (WSL) Women’s Championship Tour (CT) Rankings (After Margaret River)
1. Carissa Moore (HAW) 28 000 points
2. Courtney Conlogue (USA) 21 700
3. Stephanie Gilmore (AUS) 19 300
4. Tyler Wright (AUS) 16 900
5. Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS) 16 300
11. Bianca Buitendag (Victoria Bay, South Africa) 10 250

The Drug Aware Margaret River Pro runs from April 15 – 26, 2015 and the men’s Semifinals will get underway when competition resumes. Watch the unparalleled adventure, competitive drama and athleticism of professional surfing live at WorldSurfLeague.com.

Drug Aware Margaret River Pro Men’s Semifinal Match-ups:
SF 1: John John Florence (HAW) vs. Nat Young (USA)
SF 2: Taj Burrow (AUS) vs. Adriano de Souza (BRA)


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.

Issued on behalf of:

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

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