Perfect barrels in the 4 - 6 foot range (1.5 - 2 meters) were on hand for the final day of competition at the ASP 3-Star Maui and Sons Arica World Star Tour at the reef break of El Gringo in Arica, Chile. Anthony Walsh (AUS) continued his superb tube-riding skills straight into a highly contested Finals where he scored an astonishing 19.45 heat wave total (out of a possible 20), which included a perfect 10-point-ride, to defeat young Hawaiian surfer, Eala Stewart, who scored an 18.35 on his two best rides.
"I'm super happy, it feels unbelievable," said Anthony Walsh. "The waves were incredible and this was one of the best contests I've ever participated in. I live in Hawaii now, but I am definitely coming back here next year. Not just because of the waves, but to defend my title as well, you can count on it."
Walsh earned U$8,000 in prize money and an additional 750 points going towards his ASP World Ranking. To get to the Final, Walsh had to get past Paulo Moura (BRA) in the Quarter-Finals 18.10 x 10.75 and defeated Cristian Merello (CHL) in the Semi-Finals, 17.10 x 5.75.
Eala Stewart (HAW) also scored a perfect 10-point ride in the Quarter-Finals in addition to a 9.75 to score the event's highest heat wave total of a 19.75.
"I'm so psyched with this result," said Eala Stewart. "Just to be in the Finals of an event and with the level of surfing and waves, and only being 16 years old, it's really incredible. Even more so against a surfer who is one of my idols in big waves and in such a great town as Arica. Thanks to everybody and I hope to be back next year. I loved the waves, the city, everything here, thanks a lot."
Stewart earned U$ 4,000 in prize money and 563 points added to his ASP World Ranking. Cristian Merello (CHL) and Lucas Santamaria (ARG) concluded with an equal 3rd place finish. Both received U$ 2,300 and 422 points.
FINAL MAUI AND SONS ARICA WORLD STAR TOUR:
Winner: Anthony Walsh (AUS) - 19.45 points (10.00+9.45) - US$ 8,000 and 750 points
Runner-Up: Eala Stewart (HAW) - 18.35 points (9.50+8.85) - US$ 20,000 and 5,200 points
SEMIFINALS - 3rd place - US$ 2,300 and 422 points:
Heat 1: Eala Stewart (HAW) 7.40 x 3.35 Lucas Santamaria (ARG)
Heat 2: Anthony Walsh (AUS) 17.10 x 5.75 Cristian Merello (CHL)
Quarter-Finals - 5th place - US$ 1,500 and 316 points:
Heat 1: Lucas Santamaria (ARG) 12.15 def 8.10 Ian Gouveia (BRA)
Heat 2: Eala Stewart (HAW) 19.75 def 18.75 Manuel Selman (CHL)
Heat 3: Cristian Merello (CHL) 13.25 def 10.40 Camilo Hernandez (CHL)
Heat 4: Anthony Walsh (AUS) 18.10 def 10.75 Paulo Moura (BRA)