Waves in northern Chile are some of the most consistent on the planet. Sunny skies, glassy conditions and punchy waves in the 3-4 foot range were on hand for Day 6 of the Heroes de Mayo Iquique Pro at Playa Cavancha. Action continued as the Men's QS 3000 and Women's QS 1500 determined which athletes would reach Finals Sunday.
Defending event winner Jack Robinson (AUS) has remained consistent throughout the week, but took it to another level on Saturday as he earned a 9.10 on a long righthander at La Punta by surfing a deep barrel straight into a nifty air reverse. The Australian added a solid backup ride of a 7.67 to secure the highest heat total of the event of a 16.77 in Heat 2 of Round 6.
"The waves really started to turn on in that heat, and got kind of slabby which suits me," said Robinson, who excels in barreling conditions. "You can get a barrel and then do an air, so I'm super comfortable now."
When asked about pressure to perform on Finals Day, Robinson said, "I'm not too worried about tomorrow. You can't control the future, so just go surf. It's cool that I got the highest scores of the contest and hopefully I can find some more on Sunday."
Robinson will now face the Punta Hermosa local Joaquin Del Castillo (PER) in Heat 2 of the Quarterfinals. Heat 1 will see the Saquarema charger João Chianca (BRA) match up against Billy Stairmand (NZL), while in Heat 3 South African Matthew McGillivray (ZAF) will come up against Hawaiian Ian Gentil (HAW). The remaining Quarterfinal heat will be Dean Bowen (AUS) battling against Miguel Tudela (PER).
In the Women's division, Meah Collins (USA) took top honors on Saturday at the QS 1500 raising the highest heat total to 15.73 as she eliminated the last Brazilian in the category, Tainá Hinckel (BRA).
"I had been watching heats all day, so I had a lot of time to focus and strategize, so I felt like it really paid off in that heat," Collins remarked. "I felt like I was a little hesitant in my prior heat, so I just wanted to throw down some big power moves, which are my favorite thing to do. That 8.73 was kind of unexpected because I didn't think it would open up like the way it did."
Collins will now face Julie Nishimoto (JPN) in the Semifinals, with standout Gabriela Bryan (HAW) matching up against Nadia Erostarbe (EUK).
A call is set for 8:00 am local time for the final day of the Heroes de Mayo Iquique Pro. Event winners in four categories will be crowned tomorrow for the Men's QS 3000, the Women's QS 1500 and the combined Pro Junior categories.