It hasn't an easy path for French surfer Pauline Ado. She returned to the Championship Tour in 2017 after spending a few seasons scratching her way back. But once she requalified, it was only another uphill climb from the Gold Coast on. So when she defeated Silvana Lima -- another Tour returnee -- this morning at the Vans US Open of Surfing, the win was all the more meaningful. Ado arrived here in Huntington Beach at World No. 17, out of 17. While one solid finish won't make or break her season in terms of rankings, it could be just what the doctor ordered in terms of mindset. Cracking the Quarters is a success in anyone's book, but for Ado, it could nourish her confidence, and competitive raison d'être.