Pedro Scooby during the Heat 3 of Round 1 of the TUDOR Nazaré Tow Surfing Challenge presented by Jogos Santa Casa on December 13, 2021 in Nazare, Portugal. (Photo by Antoine Justes/World Surf League)
- Lucas Chianca, Justine Dupont Win Individual Best Performance Awards
- Chianca and Kai Lenny Retain Best Team Performance Title
- Pedro Scooby Takes Most Committed Award
- More Information at WorldSurfLeague.com
Competition got underway bright and early this morning at Nazaré’s Praia do Norte for the World Surf League (WSL) TUDOR Nazaré Tow Surfing Challenge presented by Jogos Santa Casa. A beautiful sunny day and clean, offshore 40-to-50 foot bombs set the scene for what would be an epic showcase of the world’s best big wave surfers pushing the performance bar in Portugal.
Lucas Chianca (BRA) was quick to set the scale on the very first wave of the event, fading right with a 360 spin in the middle of the wave face before racing on a high line on the left to score a nice barrel vision. His compatriot Pedro Scooby(BRA) was hands down the most impressive surfer out in the lineup in the first half of the day as he set himself up for the biggest, deepest barrels, and eventually scored a clean exit with the spit to take the top spot on the leaderboard after the first three heats, courtesy of a near-perfect 9.50 score (out of a possible 10).
“It was a crazy heat,” Scooby said. “We chose the wrong waves at the beginning and I was going crazy but Nic (Von Rupp) calmed me down and ended up putting me on a bomb. His driving put me in the perfect spot and I just did the rest, the barrel was really good.”
Kai Lenny (HAW) did his part of the job to take his duo up top the team leaderboard, scoring some nice rides on the lefts of Nazaré but not quite managing to find the hollow sections his partner Chianca was all over.
“It’s so much fun out there, two heats is just not enough,” Lenny said. “Our first heat ended chaotically but that’s why we come here, to charge. The second was better, Lucas got such a nice wave. It’s not massive but it’s always big in Nazaré.”
On the women’s side of the draw, Justine Dupont (FRA) held the lead after her first two sessions with good waves but was on the wrong end of an interference call which opened the door for her opponents Maya Gabeira (BRA) and Michelle des Bouillons (BRA) in their second go at the Portuguese lineup.
Des Bouillons stayed extremely busy in the lineup, surfing maybe the most rides out of the field but struggled to find the deep sections and was always a little away on the shoulder, hindering her scores.
“It was amazing,” Des Bouillons stated. “It’s really pretty out there but a lot harder than it looks. There’s a lot of bumps so I tried to control as much as I could and I’m happy with my performance.”
Awards Ceremony Celebrates Highlights of the Day
When the dust settled on the six, 50-minute heats, the leaderboard standings post first round remained accurate as Lucas Chianca (BRA) walked away with the Men’s Best Performance award for his ferocious attack of the big lefts earlier this morning. Towed in by his partner, and 2020 winner Kai Lenny (HAW), the Brazilian rising star of the big wave world got his time to shine and stepped up with a massive performance.
“It’s an honor to be towing and be Kai’s partner,” Chianca said. “He definitely put me on the best waves of the day for sure and we did our best out there. This is one of the best performances of my life and I’m so stoked.”
The pair successfully defended their 2020 title as the combined efforts of Lenny and Chianca once again put their team atop the leaderboard for the Best Team Performance award.
“It’s a dream-come-true working with someone like Lucas (Chianca) because we’re so like-minded,” Lenny added. “We go out and we know the exact waves we want and we’re trying to push our performance as far as we can in the airs, barrels and turns, and we’re just having so much fun out there.”
Despite a close call in her second heat, with the interference that could have cost her the victory, Justine Dupont (FRA) also managed to retain her title. Her attack of the rights and lefts, carving on the massive wave faces proved once again unmatchable as she claimed back-to-back Women’s Best Performance award.
“This is definitely team work and Pierre (Rollet) was amazing,” Dupont said. “We started coming here to Nazaré together a long time ago so it was awesome to partner with him today and with Fredo on the safety ski. We had so many friends around and it was just so sick to have all our favorite people there to share this.”
Pressure was definitely palpable in the final heat of the day as Pedro Scooby(BRA) was chasing a relatively low score to push his name and his team atop the leaderboard. The bomb he needed unfortunately never manifested and he had to settle for the second spot in the individual rankings.
But the Brazilian powerhouse’s morning exploits, scoring the deepest tubes and taking maximum risks to put himself in the sketchiest sections won him the Jogos Santa Casa Most Committed Award.
“It was a beautiful day in Nazaré, I love this place,” Scooby said. “Nic (Von Rupp) deserves a lot of credit for this win, I’m just here to have fun, I don’t have the same level of focus that they have. He pushes me a lot and I really enjoyed being out there.”
With the TUDOR Nazaré Tow Surfing Challenge pres. by Jogos Santa Casa completed today, the best big wave surfers on the planet will now shift their focus to the Pacific and track swells around Hawaii in anticipation of the Quiksilver Jaws Big Wave Challenge presented by TUDOR.
The TUDOR Nazaré Tow Surfing Challenge pres. by Jogos Santa Casa is proudly supported by TUDOR, Jogos Santa Casa, Red Bull, Corona, Hertz, MEO, Portuguese Waves, Visit Portugal, Oeste Portugal, and Nazaré City Council.
Replay All the Content From Nazaré
The TUDOR Nazaré Tow Surfing Presented by Jogos Santa Casa was broadcast LIVE on WorldSurfLeague.com and YouTube, as well as the free WSL app. The same platforms offer an array of replay content, from the full day of action to cutdowns of the best action, highest scores, interviews and more.
For more information, please visit WorldSurfLeague.com.
About the WSL
Established in 1976, the World Surf League (WSL) is the home of the world’s best surfing.
A global sports, media and entertainment company, the WSL oversees international tours and competitions, a studios division creating over 500+ hours of live and on-demand content, and via affiliate WaveCo, the home of the world’s largest high performance, human-made wave. Headquartered in Santa Monica, California, the WSL has regional offices in North America, Latin America, Asia Pacific, and EMEA.
The WSL annually crowns the men’s and women’s surfing World Champions. The global Tours and Competition division oversees and operates more than 180 global contests each year across the Championship Tour, the development tiers, including the Challenger, Qualifying and Junior Series, as well as longboard and big wave properties.
Launched in 2019, WSL Studios is an independent producer of unscripted television projects, including documentaries and series, which provide unprecedented access to athletes, events, and locations around the world. WSL events and content are distributed on linear television in over 743M+ homes worldwide and across digital and social media platforms around the world, including WorldSurfLeague.com.
WaveCo includes the Surf Ranch Lemoore facility and the utilizing and licensing of the Kelly Slater Wave System.
The WSL is dedicated to changing the world through the inspirational power of surfing by creating authentic events, experiences, and storytelling to inspire a growing, global community to live with purpose, originality, and stoke.
For more information, please visit WorldSurfLeague.com.
TUDOR is an award-winning Swiss-made watch brand, offering mechanical watches with refined aesthetics, proven reliability and unique value for money. The origins of TUDOR date back to 1926, when “The Tudor” was first registered as a brand on behalf of the founder of Rolex, Hans Wilsdorf. He created the Montres TUDOR SA Company in 1946 to offer watches with the quality and dependability of a Rolex, at a more affordable price point. Because of their robustness and affordability, throughout their history TUDOR watches have been chosen by the boldest adventurers on land, underwater and on ice. Today, the TUDOR collection includes emblematic models such as Pelagos, Black Bay, 1926 and Royal. Since 2015, TUDOR has also offered mechanical Manufacture Calibres with multiple functions and superior performance.
For more information, please visit TUDORWatch.com.