The Paul Mitchell Supergirl Pro is a marquee event for women's professional surfing and continues to provide a platform for some of the world's best, along with the next generation of upcoming talent -- both of which were represented in a stacked Final Sunday. But, in the end, the coveted Supergirl cape belonged to three-time WSL Champion Carissa Moore after a captivating Finals day performance.
Moore took on the clean, inconsistent two-to-three foot swell in brilliant fashion and overcame 16-year-old rookie Caroline Marks in a gritty Final bout. This notes Moore's first-ever Supergirl Pro victory in her fourth attempt at the coveted cape.
"I'm so excited to have my first cape and this is such a great win which I haven't been able to get all season," Moore said. "This is huge for confidence and I think I've just been over-complicating things in my mind so it's nice to simplify things. I was happy to play the game a little bit better than I have this season. It felt good to keep making heats and I just wanted to keep my head down, and just enjoy the competition. When conditions are tougher like that, it's a more about the game then the performance so I just tried to embrace that."
A slow start to a highly anticipated Final kept spectators anxiously awaiting the opening exchange, but it was fireworks from then on. Moore opened up with her signature power surfing and earned a near-excellent 7.67 (out of a possible 10) to start, which Marks nearly matched with a 7.00 of her own. But, the Hawaiian added a 6.17 and put the pressure on which the young talent was unable to overcome -- though getting close with a 6.10 when needing a 6.85.
Moore showed her veteran experience throughout the day, taking down fellow CT competitors Bronte Macaulay in Round 5, Johanne Defay in the Quarterfinals and, one of Supergirl Pro's most consistent competitors, Malia Manuel in the Semifinals. But, the 25-year-old knows the work is just beginning.
"Caroline [Marks] was a stand out that whole event and I knew the judges were liking what she was doing so it was going to be a tough Final," Moore added. "I just needed to do my own thing and hopefully the ocean was on my side -- which it was so I was stoked. I think the key is to stay present and know what you're doing. Everything past the first exchange you're surfing against yourself."