It's been a day of upsets at the 2016 Jeep World Longboarding Championship presented by Wanning. Three Heats of the Women's Quarterfinals were run in super clean 2-to-3 foot waves at Riyue Bay.
There were plenty of shake-ups as the top seeds fell from the draw, meaning that none of the surfers left in Women's event have a World Title to their name, an exciting prospect as the event draws nearer to crowing the 2016 World Longboard Champion.
The one heat where the top seed prevailed was Heat 1 of the Quarterfinals where Chloe Calmon of Brazil continued her solid run at the WLC. Calmon had no easy task as she came up against Hawaii's Honolua Blomfield. Blomfield put up a strong fight but was unable to overcome Calmon's massive heat total of 17.66 (out of a possible 20).
"The was a really crazy heat because we weren't sure if we running until just before the heat started," Calmon said. "I have noticed a massive improvement in Honolua's surfing so I was not that comfortable paddling out, I knew she would be hard to beat. After I locked in a that first score it was hard to find a back up so I was pretty nervous that entire time."
The biggest shock exit of the event so far came in Quarterfinal No. 2 when Reunion Island native Justine Mauvin knocked reigning world Champion Rachael Tilly out of contention. It was a battle of the mid-range scores as both competitors struggled to post a score of any substance. Mauvin was smart with priority on a number of occasions holding Tilly off of waves with potential. Mauvin finished the heat with a moderate heat total of 13.56 which was enough to see her progress to the Semifinals, the best result she has had at the WLC.
"This doesn't feel real yet, I'm so happy," Mauvin said. "I feel that it takes a while to get in a good rhythm with this wave and I have been coming here for a few years now and feel more comfortable out there. The support I was getting on the beach felt so unreal I sill can't believe it."
The French island of Reunion continued its success in Heat 3 when Alice Lemoigne knocked out two time World Champion and Longboard style icon Kelia Moniz. Inspired by her hometown friend in the previous heat, Lemoigne posted two solid scores early in the heat for a heat total of 15.87. This left Moniz chasing an excellent score of 8.84, a task she was unable to complete, gifting Lemoigne a Semifinal berth, the best result of her career to date.
"Kelia is such a stylish amazing surfer," Lemoigne said. "She is one of the best and I never thought I could beat her so I'm really surprised. Last week I had lost my passport and the trip was turning into a nightmare but once I got that sorted out I was feeling better. Now a week later I am in the Semifinals and just over the moon."