The Men and Women's Longboard Tour (LT) elite got a taste of what the East Coast can truly deliver with incredible morning conditions at the Longboard Classic New York supported by I LOVE NY. Three-to-five foot swell came into Long Beach, New York, with offshore winds to create an extensive day of competition once more with women completing remaining Round 2 heats before moving into top-seeded Round 3 and men completing Round 3, as well as top-seeded Round 4 Heats 1 -4.
The opportunities were endless and the world's best seized every moment presented with multiple excellent scores and near-perfection throughout another marathon day.
Current No. 1 Thrives Under Pressure
Current LT No. 1 Chloe Calmon continued her control among the world's best with a commanding win over yesterday's standout Natsumi Taoka and Sally Cohen with Round 2's highest heat total. The Brasilian is looking to claim a long-awaited World Title and is beginning to show her confidence, as well as her composure under pressure, with a full dominance over 2019 so far. Calmon went from third to first, using her backup game plan, keeping her nerves in check and showcasing what she's capable of.
"I think with this new criteria it allows to showcase the beautiful style of longboarding," Calmon said. "Everything we do on a wave shouldn't be forced. You have to get the turns to get scores but you can still find the balance of getting those scores while still putting on a good display. This is my tenth year on the Longboard Tour and even though I'm young, I'm one of the older ones these days (laughs). When I was younger the nerves would get to me sometimes but now I can shift into keeping those emotions out and just focusing on the heat."
The Young Guard Break Through: Kelis Kaleopa'a Debuts Strong
The women jumped right back into their Round 2 affairs to set up who would face the top seeds and Kaleopa'a took over her debut with the women's best performance of a 13.34 (out of a possible 20) heat total. The Hawaii competitor continued that momentum into Round 3 with a runner-up, advancing position, behind top-seed and recently crowned European Regional Longboard titleholder Alice Lemoigne.
"I just wanted to go out and have fun, and the waves are really fun out there," Kaleopa'a said. "I'm a goofyfooter and I love lefts so I was super stoked on my 7-point ride. I didn't really get good results in Noosa or Spain so I'm trying really hard to get a good result here."
LT veteran and current No. 5 Lindsay Steinriede took on two-time WSL Champion Kelia Moniz and her fellow Hawaii competitor Megan Godinez in Round 3 Heat 3 for a hefty match up. In the end it was the veteran Steinriede who overcame both Moniz and Godinez, eliminating Godinez, with a massive victory to start her campaign toward another big result.
"I just looked and realized I was No. 5 but it actually motivated me and pumped me up a bit for this heat," Steinriede said. "I knew it was going to be a big heat so any extra good energy helped. There were a few bumps out there so I had to stay loose and absorb some but I couldn't avoid all of them (laughs)."
The Rising Tides movement made its way to Long Beach to continue its incredible momentum around the world after already making stops at each of the Championship Tour (CT) events and LT events. Over 70 young women joined some of the world's best including Moniz, reigning WSL Champion Soleil Errico, 2015 WSL Champion Rachael Tilly, and many more. The goal of encouraging and inspiring the next generation of women to get in the water has created incredible moments of sheer brilliance as the movement is recognized worldwide.
Event organizers will reconvene at 6:30am ET to determine a possible 7:00am ET start to either men's Round 4 Heat 5 or women's Round 4 action.