- WSL / Kevin Moncayo

Competition began today at the World Surf League (WSL) Copa Sails of Change Galapagos QS 1000 in Ecuador. The exotic location at La Loberia on the island of San Cristobal is famous for it's unique wildlife, but is also home to a variety of high-quality surf breaks. On Thursday, competitors were greeted with solid conditions and waves in the 4-5 foot range. The Men's Round of 32 was completed today in the first event of the WSL South America 2023/24 season.

Despite a heavy local contingent in the opening rounds, it was young Brazilian Daniel Adisaka (BRA) who earned the highest scores on the first day of competition. Adisaka found two good waves to earn a 7.25 and a 5.65 on his best rides for a 12.90 total.

Daniel Adisaka Daniel Adisaka (BRA) earned the highest scores on the opening day in Galapagos. - WSL / Kevin Moncayo

"Conditions are really good, there are a lot of excellent waves here and I've been having loads of fun," said Adisaka. "This is my first time to Galapagos and this place is incredible. There are a bunch of different animals here, a ton of sea lions that we don't have in Brazil and it's great to have these types of experiences. It's beautiful, the waves are great, and I just feel blessed to be here."

Heat 1 of the Round of 32 featured Alonso Correa (PER) winning the opening heat and was followed in Heat 2 by local surfer Joshua Marcillo (ECU) coming out victorious to the delight of the Ecuadorian fans.

Snaider Parrales Snaider Parrales (ECU) at the Copa Sails of Change Galapagos. - WSL / Kevin Moncayo

"This is the strongest wave we have here in Galapagos. It's predominantly a supergood lefthand break, and I found two good ones to get the scores and advance into the Round of 16," said Marcillo. "I'm so stoked to be competing at home and I wish everyone that's competing the best of luck. It feels amazing to be in a contest at the wave I surf every day."

In an all-Ecuadorian matchup, Maximiliano Saenz (ECU) defeated Anthony Cornejo (ECU), Cristhian Hernandez and Noah Barrera (ECU) in Heat 3 of the Round of 32. Saenz advanced into the Round of 16 at the Copa Sails of Change Galapagos QS 1000.

"Conditions got really good during my heat. The sun came out, the waves turned on and luckily I found the best ones to advance," said Saenz. "My strategy was to act quickly, get a bunch of waves and try to find the good ones because they might look good, but sometimes they closeout quickly."

Copa Sails of Change Galápagos Some of the local wildlife from the Galapagos Islands. - WSL / Angel Ortiz


Friday is expected to see the women take to the water to begin their quest for the initial ranking points of the WSL South America 2023/24 season. Headlining the event's heat draw is veteran Ecuadorian surfer Dominic Barona (ECU), who has qualified for the 2023 WSL Challenger Series. She will be in the first heat of the day and will face Marina Bortman (ECU) and Brianna Barthelmess (PER).

Also in the mix are other notable athletes such as Sophia Medina (BRA), Arena Rodriguez Vargas (PER) and Melanie Giunta (PER). A win in Galapagos will result in the rankings lead of the WSL South America 2023/24 season. A call is set for 8:00 AM (GMT-6) for continuation of the Copa Sails of Change Galapagos QS 1000. Watch LIVE at WorldSurfLeague.com

The Swiss organization "Sails of Change" will promote various educational activities on environmental preservation during the event on San Cristóbal Island. The second edition of the Sails of Change QS 1000 Galápagos Cup takes place thanks to the support of Sails of Change, El Club Formativo San Cristóbal, CNT, GAD San Cristóbal, Ministerio de Deporte, the Consejo de Governo de Régimen Especial, Universidad San Francisco, Naturegua and GEA.

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