Bruno Santos (BRA) proved to be a dangerous wildcard at the Billabong Pro Tahiti, defeating World No. 1 Adriano de Souza (BRA) in the early stages of the event. And while he didn't go on to win (he finished in ninth place), Santos ruled Teahupo'o in the Tahiti GoPro Challenge, topping 35 submissions to win the $10,000 prize purse.
The GoPro Challenge asks competing World Surf League (WSL) athletes to submit their own GoPro videos from the competition venue and surrounding areas, with clips accepted starting two days prior to the contest window and no later than the conclusion of the event. Though Teahupo'o was fickle and not always contestable, it still made for some fantastic shots, with views of Tahiti's lush mountains at the end of the tunnel -- literally.
Santos' video had the perfect mix of the contest's winning criteria, which include cinematography, degree of difficulty of shooting, perspective and overall beauty and lighting. Each element held equal weight and the panel of five judges -- three from the WSL staff and two from GoPro -- ultimately crowned Santos as champion.
The GoPro Challenge Tahiti edition is the second one so far this season. C.J. Hobgood (USA), who was honored with Billabong's Andy Irons Most Committed Performance Award in Tahiti, won the kickoff contest at the Fiji Pro with a sunlit barrel ride at Cloudbreak.
Want to know how to shoot winning clips? Check out this tutorial.
The Tahiti GoPro Challenge was the most popular event last season, but this year saw almost twice the number of submissions. Here are some of the other nominees:
The next GoPro Challenge will be at the Billabong Pipe Masters, which kicks off December 8 and is the final stop on the men's 2015 Samsung Galaxy Championship Tour. Watch all the submissions to the 2015 GoPro Challenge here.