Mahalo Surf Eco Festival

Field at Mahalo Surf Festival Narrows to 64

Athletes at the ASP 4-Star Mahalo Surf Eco Festival presented by Skol took advantage of improved conditions at Praia da Tiririca and provided several highlights by taking to the air.

Samuel Igo (BRA) earned an 8.75 after completing a Kerrupt flip for the highest single-wave score of the day.

Samuel Igo Samuel Igo had the highest single-wave score, an 8.75. - WSL

"I wasn't doing well in my heat and I needed a big score, so I decided to paddle away from the other competitors to try and catch a left," Igo said. "I had seen Elivelton (Santos) land a Kerrupt flip earlier in the day and the judges gave him a big score, so I tried to do the same. I've been practicing it a lot, so I knew that I could land it. I'm stoked because I needed to make some heats to improve my ranking to be able to surf in the larger events next year."

Reo Inaba (JPN), Dimitri Ouvre (GLP), Rafael Pereira (VEN) and Teale Vanner (AUS) have all made it to Round of 64 and will now face the event's top seeds.

"The waves are a little hard to find, so you have to be patient if you want to get a good one," said Vanner. "It's my first time to Brazil and it's a great place with excellent surfers, such as Gabriel Medina, who I've been watching for a while."

Another group of international athletes who will face the top seeds in Round of 64 are Tristan Guilbaud (FRA), Mihimana Braye (PYF) and Nic Hdez (USA).

Nic Hdez Nic Hdez will face Ian Gouveia, David Do Carmo and Connor O'Leary in the Round of 64. - WSL

"The waves have some weak spots, but they have some good sections for throwing up airs," said Hdez after his victory in the Round of 96. "It's my first time here and I don't have a lot of experience in these types of conditions. But it's very beautiful here and the nature is outstanding. It looks like it's the kind of place where the waves are really good, so I hope they improve over the next couple of days."

Alan Jhones (BRA) earned a runner-up result in last year's competition and is looking to improve on his performance with a heat win today.

"I had such a good result last year and I would've been bummed if I lost in the Round of 96," stated Jhones. "I was so lucky to catch that wave at the end of the heat that let me boost that air. From the beach, the waves look amazing, but in the water it's kind of hard to find good ones. All the athletes here are surfing really well and are looking to take out the title. But I'm going to try my hardest to win the event."

Action is sure to heat up when the top seeds hit the water. Watch each heat LIVE at