Eithan Osborne of the United States surfs in Round 4 of the Round of 16 at the VANS US Open of Surfing on August 3, 2022 in Huntington Beach, California, USA. (Photo by Beatriz Ryder/World Surf League)
- Eithan Osborne soars to near perfection, Molly Picklum lights up round of 16
- Liam O’Brien wins his third consecutive Huntington Beach quarter-final
- Caroline Marks heading for another Vans US Open of Surfing title
- More available on WorldSurfLeague.com
The head-to-head action took place at Vans US Open Surfing, Stop No. 4 in the World Surf League (WSL) Challenger Series (CS), with a four to six foot swell still offering plenty of opportunity. A critical day of competition began with the men’s round 24, sets 5-8 leading up to the round of 16 duels. The day ended with the Women’s Round of 16 Rounds 1-4 to begin to determine quarter-final matchups.
Outstanding Performance by Eithan Osborne
The top-flight competitors left spectators wanting more after a flurry of morning action that set up the men’s round of 16 head-to-head matches. The excitement continued in the Men’s Round of 16 and Women’s Round of 16.
The event saw its highest score in a single wave until Ventura, Calif. Eithan Osborne (USA) stomped a massive air in full rotation to get a near-perfect 9.67 (out of a possible 10). Osborne’s explosive maneuvers are known in the surfing world and today he brought that firepower to the jersey in spectacular fashion, knocking out the former CT heavyweight. Willian Cardoso(BRA). It is the 22-year-old’s best result in the Challenger Series and he is now looking to improve on that result.
“It was a fence and I tried a big one yesterday which freaked everyone out so I thought if I landed one I could get that nine more points and that was in my mind all morning,” Osborne said. “I knew Willian (Cardoso) could just do two giant turns and get a solid score, so I figured if I changed him up a bit (the judges) would reward him. I had the five to start the inning, which isn’t a big score, but two solid scores came in, so that was the plan.
Caroline Marks heading for another Vans US Open of Surfing title
Two-time winner of the Vans US Open of Surfing Pro Junior and one of the best in the world, Caroline Marks (USA), again dominated with 8.83 and 6.00 in his score. Marks had to beat one of Costa Rica’s star talents Leilani McGonagle (CRI), which brought out the best in Marks as the two faced off in the Qualifying Series (QS) for years leading up to Marks qualifying CT.
“Getting scores like that on simple maneuvers definitely gives me confidence and it was good to have some really good waves today,” Marks said. “Today was more typical of Huntington and tons of swell, so it’s a bit cleaner, and I had a lot of fun out there. I have tons of respect for Leilani (McGonagle). I had so many heats against her and she’s an amazing surfer.
Former CT Rookie 2022 Class Clash In Big Showdowns
With the reintroduction of the CT Mid-Season Cut, rookies who narrowly missed out on their place among the world’s best are hungry to return and have shown that desire in dynamic form.
A showcase of the next generation of women’s surfing put on a brilliant show as a 2022 CT rookie Molly Picklum (AUS) took the joker from Vans Bella Kenworthy (UNITED STATES). Picklum unleashed his backhand attack to collect an excellent 8.00 just before the 20 minute mark and backed it up with a 7.00.
“It’s crazy, I had this big turn for an 8.00 and then I just watched Caroline (Marks) do the same, so if I get it it’s going to be a pretty exciting quarter-final I think. “, said Picklum. “Things change when I put the shirt on and it’s kind of weird because Bella (Kenworthy) and I are really close, and we get along great. We took that trip to Mexico and I got to see how she is really good and i never felt safe there.
Also making their way to the quarter-finals with clutch performances, the former CT surfers Amuro Tsuzuki (JPN) and Macy Callaghan (AUS) are about to get a big potential result.
Two competitors from the 2022 CT Rookie Class kicked off the round of 16 with event stars Imaikalani from Vault (HAW) and Liam O’Brien (AUS), going wave for wave in their business. Massive one-lap maneuvers set the tone with O’Brien earning a 6.83 before deVault beat him with a 6.93, but O’Brien’s save had deVault scour the lineout in the hope to turn the heat around. In the end, O’Brien held on to the lead despite a priority error in the final minutes and made his third straight appearance in the Vans US Open of Surfing quarterfinals.
“This wave has always been really nice to me and there’s just a novelty about it,” O’Brien said. “I love coming here and I’ve been able to get some big results in the past. Imai (deVault’s) is an amazing surfer and I love his surfing so I knew it was going to be some pretty tough heat, but I stuck with what I had to do.
Lucca Mesinas (PER) looks unstoppable with his current form, racking up an excellent 8.00 in his rising star dismantling cole housmand (USA), alongside fellow 2022 CT rookie who is looking to requalify, Joao Chianca(BRA). Evan Geiselman (UNITED STATES), Joel Vaughan (AUS), and former CT elite Ryan Callinan (Australia) and Ezekiel Lau (HAW) also earned their place in the quarter-finals with massive wins in the round of 16.
The next call is tomorrow, August 4, at 7:05 a.m. PDT for a possible 7:35 a.m. PDT start of the Women’s Round of 16 Round 5.
The Vans US Open of Surfing is now open and will run through August 7 in Huntington Beach, California. The event will be broadcast live on WorldSurfLeague.com, The WSL YouTube channeland the free WSL app. Check local listings for WSL broadcast partner coverage.
The Vans US Open of Surfing is proudly sponsored by Vans, Visit Huntington Beach, Red Bull, Flying Embers, Hydro Flask, Shiseido, 805, Pacifico, Sambazon, StillHouse, Youtheory, BF Goodrich, Fu Wax, Boxed Water and Just Egg.
For more information, please visit WorldSurfLeague.com.
The World Surf League (WSL) is the global home for competitive surfing, crowning undisputed world champions since 1976 and showcasing the world’s best surfers on the world’s best waves. WSL includes the Tours and Competition division, which oversees and manages more than 180 global competitions each year; WSL WaveCo, home to the largest high-performance artificial wave in the world; and WSL Studios, an independent producer of unscripted and scripted projects.
For more information, please visit WorldSurfLeague.com.
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