Debierre was first to take action in the 30-minute men's final, and tried to keep active, scouring the lineup for opportunities to display his powerful forehand turns on the rights on offer. With two solid 7+ rides, Debierre claims his first-ever Junior win and takes an early lead in the 2016 European Junior rankings.
"I can't believe it!," Debierre said. "My goal coming here was to try and reach the quarters, so going all the way is a little bit unexpected ! Waves were tricky to find but I was lucky enough to get two fun ones and surfed it the best I could. I look forward to our next Junior event in Biscarrosse, this is an awesome start and I hope I can keep the ball rolling."
Portugal's Luis Perloiro (PRT), 17, fought back on similar waves on his backhand but couldn't quite match Debierre's power and flow. Ultimately chasing an excellent score to get back in the lead, Perloiro placed runner-up on home soil.
"I'm really happy, of course I would have loved to win but my goal being to reach the Top 5 overall this season I'm stoked with this great start," Perloiro reflected. "I think I surfed a little too safe, I probably should have taken more risks and go vertically more instead of doing snaps. That's a lesson I'll learn and try not to repeat the same mistake."
In the women's final, Bonvalot managed to overcome her opponent in a very slow heat disputed in the bumpy surf of Praia do Paraiso this afternoon. With minimal scores on the board, every ride counted and the young Portuguese capitalized on an average wave to distance herself from Erostarbe and take her second consecutive win in Caparica.
"Today conditions were really tough, kind of stormy so I'm super happy to have managed to win," Bonvalot said. "It's my second time winning here and it feels awesome, I hope I can continue in the next events. Biscarrosse is going to be a challenge as well because it's a new spot I don't know, but I'm happy to travel there and discover, I really hope it's going to be warm and nice."
Despite an excellent run in Portugal, Basque Country's Nadia Erostarbe (EUK), 15, couldn't compose with the conditions on finals day and had to settle for the runner-up spot. On a roll since the final Junior event of 2015, Erostarbe will now need to confirm her excellent form comes Stop No. 2 of the series in France next month.
"I'm super happy with this result, unfortunately I couldn't do much in the final and didn't find any decent waves but that's how it goes," Erostarbe said. "I'm going to surf in the QS at home in Zarautz next week so I hope I can win a few heats there too as a wildcard. We've been traveling here with Ibon Amatriain, my coach, and a few other surfers from Zarautz, we have a good crew supporting each other so that's nice."
Following the completion of this inaugural first Junior stop of 2016, surfers will have a month to recompose or keep their rhythm in anticipation of the Junior Pro Biscarrosse, Stop N°2 of the European Junior Qualifying Series.