After beginning the competition on Tuesday with the Men's QS 1,500, the spotlight shifted to the WSL Women's QS 1,000 Rip Curl Pro Argentina. Clean conditions with offshore winds and waves in the 1-2 foot range (0.5 meter) kept the athletes on their toes, making waves selection crucial at Playa Grande in Mar del Plata.
Out of the twenty-six participants from eight countries, the Argentinian surfers took care of home-field advantage to win the majority of the heats today. Lucia Cosoleto, Josefina Ane and Flavia Cianciarulo all advanced in 1st place in their respective heats to the delight of the crowd on the beach at the Biologia jetty.
However, it was Yanca Costa from Brazil who had the highest scores of the entire event so far with a 14.75 total after scoring an 8.25 on her best ride. To put things in perspective, Costa's scores bettered all 20 heats from the Men's event yesterday.
"I'm feeling great, my board feels amazing. Even though the waves are small, they're still a lot of fun, so I'm just focused on making it through the next rounds," said Costa. "I felt confident in surfing the way I want to and I know all the girls are ripping, so I'm just going to rest up, eat well and get ready for tomorrow."
2004 WSL Women's World Champion Sofia Mulanovich (PER) has been a consummate professional her entire career and is an idol to many of the athletes competing at the Rip Curl Pro Argentina. The Peruvian advanced into Round 2 with a 12.70 heat total yet has her eye on a larger prize.
"I'm very happy to be here. This is my second time to Mar del Plata. I competed here during the Pan-American games a few years ago and really enjoyed the city," said Mulanovich. "However, this is my first QS event here and I'm glad that I made it through my first heat. I've been training a lot in Peru because my goal is to qualify for the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo."
On another international note, hailing from New Smyrna Beach, Nicole Fulford (USA) advanced into Round 2 after defeating Jessica Anderson (CHL) and Ana Laura Gonzalez (MEX) in Heat 2 on Wednesday.
"It was fun once you got a wave that stood up. It's pretty tough and small but once you get a wave that lets you do some turns, it's pretty fun," said Fulford. "I've been through a lot of South America but it's my first time here. It's pretty cool. I got here about two days before the event and I've just been surfing two or three times a day. Where I train at my homebreak in Florida is pretty similar to this. Argentina is nice, it's pretty different from the other South American countries I've been to. I got to try some ‘alfajores' and those are pretty yummy (laughs)."
A call is set for 8:00am local time to see if competition will continue on Thursday.