"You're still third in the world and that's not good enough [for the Olympics]," says Lakey Peterson in a new article by Marie Claire which details the three-way battle between her, Carissa Moore and Caroline Marks for the two women's spots on the USA Surfing Olympic Team.
That sums up the brutal reality of trying to book a spot in surfing's historic Olympic debut, with each nation able to send two women, and two men, to Tokyo. And yet, Moore, Peterson and Marks are the top three female surfers in the world.
When these three athletes arrived at Honolua Bay for the penultimate event of 2019, the World Title race was so close it could technically have ended in a three-way tie which would have triggered a surf off. And yet, only one women could walk away as the World Champion, and only two would secure a spot on the Olympic team.
The article goes on to explain the new levels of performance seen on the Championship Tour, and the fierce competition we're set to see when these elite athletes compete for gold at the Tokyo Olympic Games -- which have sadly been postponed due to the ongoing Covid pandemic.
Importantly, it also highlights the fact that male and female surfers compete for the same amount of prize money, putting surfing at the vanguard of a push for equality in professional sports.
You can read the full article here.