Alice Lemoigne and Edouard Delpero have won the Boardmasters, Cornwall today in clean two foot surf at Fistral beach in front of a packed beach coming to enjoy a picture-perfect summer day.
Reigning World Longboard Champion Rachael Tilly opened her final count with a near-perfect wave of 9.33 for a long right-hander and multiple graceful nose rides all the way into the beach. Newly crowned 3-time European Champion Alice Lemoigne took the first wave of the same set, a bigger wave but not as clean with more crumbling sections, not allowing her to fully exploit the clean wave face, for a 7.67.
The fading swell still regularly produced sets as Lemoigne quickly got another opportunity and surfed a very similar wave for another 7.50 and the lead over the American. Not content with her current situation, the French surfer from Reunion Island kept building house, with an excellent 8.83 to further apply pressure on her opponent. Despite multiple efforts, Tilly's campaign to back up her 9 was in vain and Lemoigne added another victory to her solid resume.
"This has been an incredible day, I could have never imagined it to turn out that way," an ecstatic Lemoigne stated. "I got some good scores along the way and it's really comforting for the rest of the season. I love coming here every year, we never have such an audience for a longboard event and it's really cool to see all those people enjoying our show."
Earlier today, Lemoigne survived a tense battle against good friend and fellow Reunion Island surfer Victoria Vergara in their semifinal matchup, cementing her regional rankings lead to claim her third European Longboard Champion Title.
"To clinch a third European title is absolutely unbelievable, it shows that all the work, the training, the efforts are not in vain," she added. "I can't thank enough my sponsor Daddy Seal that shapes me incredible boards, my trainer, my parents and my boyfriend who support me so much."
Californian Tilly fell just short of finding a good enough back-up score in the final and takes the runner-up spot. With a win earlier this season in Galicia, the reigning World Longboard Champion completes a fruitful European campaign and will try to keep her momentum going toward her next events on the world stage.
"It's been a great time competing over here in Europe, I definitely I could have taken this one out as well but Alice surfed great, I was happy to at least post a 9 and put on a good show," she reflected. "I'll definitely be coming back next year, these events were really great and I look forward to it."
In the men's final, Emilien Fleury and Edouard Delpero got into multiple back-to-back waves and exchanged big scores for most of the final. They each threaded long nose rides and took advantage of every little section, with clean drop knee carves.
Delpero made a move for the win with a solid 8.97 on the ten-minute mark as Fleury kept very busy in the lineup, trying to find an equally great ride to try to clinch a maiden event win. Unfortunately opportunities got scarce and ultimately Delpero was carried up the beach, victorious for the first time this season. Delpero had previously dispatched of older brother and 2016 European Champion Antoine in an epic semifinal clash.
"I'm so happy to win here again today, I managed to beat my brother for the first time this year and to surf that final against one of my best mates in a man-on-man heat was incredible," he stated. "All our European crew has been surfing so well this year again and we're all super motivated to do well at the World final at the end of the year !"
With the runner-up position today, Fleury nets his best result since 2013, when he reached the final of the Real B Voice Pro Longboard in Japan. Fleury had however been the form surfer all week, claiming both the highest combined heat total and single-wave score of the entire event.
"It got tough by the end there with the high tide and a lot less sets than before," he said.
"I wish I could have gotten better waves because I was so close to win an event, finally. Edouard is so strong, especially when it comes to the finals, he chose better waves and deserved to win. I'm still extremely happy with my performance this week and this really motivates me to fight for the title next year and try to put a stop to the Delperos' supremacy!"
Today's results cement Edouard Delpero's second place overall in the European rankings and propels Fleury up to second ahead of Ben Skinner.
Newquay local Adam Griffiths claimed Britain's best result today at Fistral with an excellent equal third place as his great run at the Boardmasters was halted by Fleury in the semis. He had previously eliminated good friend and fellow Cornish surfer Skinner in their quarterfinal matchup.
"I'm really stoked with the third place today, it's my first event of the year as I had a couple of injuries keeping me out of the water this year I didn't have too much luck," he analyzed. "I had a really good heat with Skindog earlier today, it's always nice to beat him, we've been traveling and competing together for ages and he normally beats me."
The musical side of the Boardmasters Festival will also conclude tonight at Watergate Bay with one last night of festivities. More information on the full festival lineup at boardmasters.co.uk.
Following the completion of the Boardmasters, Cornwall this week, surfers will now move on to Southwest France for the upcoming Men & Women's QS1,000 Médoc Océan Lacanau Pro from August 16-21.
Longboarders have now completed their four European events of the 2016 season and will look forward to representing their region at the Jeep World Longboard Championship, China presented by Wanning next December.
Final Men's European LQS Rankings:
1 - Antoine Delpero (FRA) European Champion
2 - Edouard Delpero (FRA)
3 - Emilien Fleury (FRA)
4 - Ben Skinner (GBR)
5 - Martin Coret (REU)
Final Women's European LQS Rankings:
1 - Alice Lemoigne (REU) European Champion
2 - Victoria Vergara (FRA)
3 - Carole Lormant (FRA)
4 - Kathleen Barrigao (PRT)
5 - Francesca Rubegni (ITA)