NewsJunior Pro SopelaAxel Lopetegi

European Juniors Head to Sopela for Stop No. 5

Teaser: Sopela Readies for Europe's Best U-18
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The Junior Pro Sopela comes back for a seventh edition to help decide the 2018 European title and qualifiers for the World Junior Championship.

The Junior Pro Sopela will continue the exciting 2018 season on the European Junior Qualifying Series. Here's everything you need to know about this event.

Where?

Sopela is located on the outskirts of Bilbao, the Basque Country's main city. It's an extremely popular beach that gets crazy crowded in summer. Clean light-brown sand bordered by cliffs and green fields behind paint a pretty picture of a typical Basque beach.

Ellie Turner (GBR) .Jr Pro Sopela 2017 The vibe on a typical morning in Sopela. WSL / Laurent Masurel

The wave is a highly-consistent, punchy beachbreak that offers both lefts and rights at pretty much all tides. The event usually has great conditions for the surfers to display all the maneuvers, whether in tubes, on the wave face or in the air.

What?

The Junior Pro Sopela will be Stop No. 5 of 6 on the European Junior Qualifying Series. After four events, two in Portugal (Espinho and Caparica) and two in France (La Torche and Biscarrosse), it's time for the final two stops in Spain.

Justin Becret (FRA) .Junior Pro Biscarrosse 2018 Justin Becret's track record in Sopela isn't great, and he'll have to bring his best surfing next week. WSL / Laurent Masurel

In the men's field, what shaped up to be a very open race for the 2018 European title, has suddenly turned into a one-man show with Justin Becret taking out back-to-back wins in France. The Seignosse local now has a shot at claiming a first-ever regional title in Sopela if he can reach the finals again and his main opponent Marco Mignot fails to make big points.

Nadia Erostarbe (EUK) .Junior Pro Biscarrosse 2018 The Basque Country's Nadia Erostarbe will be looking to confirm her current form on home soil. WSL / Laurent Masurel

The women's title race is a completely different story. With four different winners in the first four events, the race is wide open and the two remaining events will be decisive in crowning the European Champion as well as selecting the Top 2 surfers who qualify for the World Junior Championship. Nadia Erostarbe currently leads the show with a very consistent effort: a win, a runner-up, a third place and a fifth to make up a total 2,730 points.

When?

Tune in from July 18-22, 2018 and check out all the photos, videos and updates right here!

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