The 4-Star Surf Open Acapulco crowned Luke Davis (USA) its 2014 champion in flawless two-to-four-foot surf at Playa Revolcadero, Acapulco, Mexico. This marks his first-ever ASP Qualifying Series (QS) victory.
The San Clemente native opened his campaign in the Final with an impressive 8.00 when he tore apart a long righthander, launching two distinct airs to start and finish the wave. Later in the heat, Davis put together another solid ride, bringing his two-wave total to 15.97. While sitting in the pole position the entire heat, Davis was in his best form looking smooth and relaxed.
â€œI love Acapulco, this event has been so fun. Since the day I got here I've just felt really comfortable and everything has been positive,â€ Davis said. â€œThe last time I made a final was in Virginia about four years ago, where Brother (Kolohe) Andino beat me, so to finally win boosts my confidence so much. I'm just going to go back home now and surf, relax, and get ready for the U.S. Open.â€
Davis receives 1,000 ratings points, putting him in good standing on the QS rankings going into the Vans U.S. Open of Surfing, where he hopes to carry this momentum straight into another good result.
Noe Mar McGonagle (CRI) was the surfer to beat the entire event. The regular-footer stuck to his strategy and sat on the lefts, favoring his backside, but couldn't find another solid score after his opening 7.00 ride. This is McGonagle's first time making a QS Final, and he will walk away with 750 points. Last year, he finished equal ninth in Acapulco.
"My goal was to better my result from last year so I accomplished that," McGonagle said. "I felt confident going into the Final, but the waves just didn't really come to me and my strategy didn't work out how it had in other heats. To make the my first QS Final feels amazing, though, and hopefully I can build from here."
Leandro Usuna (ARG) had an impressive showing throughout the event and missed making the Final by a slim margin, after he was ousted by Davis in the Semis. Usuna walks away from the event with 563 points, which will give him a boost in the QS rankings and provide some confidence going into the second half of the year and into ASP Prime events, where bigger sets of points can be earned.
"This contest was really important for me going into the next half of the year," Usuna said. "I was focused on getting some points this event and having a good result so I can get to Azores, so I was stoked to have made the Semifinals. I love coming here to Acapulco, though. The waves are awesome, the weather is nice, the food is amazing, and I have a lot of friends in Mexico so I've been feeling good."
Finishing alongside Usuna in equal third was Nathaniel Curran (USA). Curran was on fire the past few days, displaying smooth, powerful surfing. In his Semifinal heat against McGonagle, Curran dropped an 8.30 on a big left in the final minutes, placing him within striking distance. Unfortunately for Curran, the ocean went calm as time ticked away, leaving the door open for the in-form Costa Rican to take the win.
â€œI've had a blast here in Acapulco and the waves have been super fun. I had a good rhythm in the majority of all my heats, but unfortunately in the Semis luck just ran out," Curran said. "There weren't too many waves where I was sitting, and it was a bummer because I felt good, I just needed a wave. Sometimes the ocean just doesn't cooperate. Hopefully I can get into the US Open and keep the ball rolling."
Full results and recaps from the Surf Open Acapulco can be found on ASP's Acapulco event page.