13 August 2019
A warm hello from our Proteam athlete Courtney Conlogue! Without a doubt, Court...
"Hey" says Nora (the original explorer) before going for a swim under the hot Californian...
On August 4th, Huntington Beach was buzzing with spectators as the final round of the Vans US Open of Surfing presented by Swatch was underway. Sage Erickson (USA) and Yago Dora (BRA) put on remarkable performances all week and their hard work paid off on Sunday when they were both crowned winners. It was a historic milestone for the WSL Qualifying Series event – it was the first time the event paid equal prize money to both winners and they both received 10,000 QS points.
Sage went up against Swatch Proteam athlete and defending champ Courtney Conlogue in the final, with both California natives putting on an awe-inspiring show. Sage put on one of the day’s best performances, leaving Courtney in her wake in the second heat.
“To be home in California, have a heat against Courtney and to be 10,000 – it’s more than just points,” Sage said. “It’s equal pay, it’s a prime, it’s a lot for us women and a big shout out to Jessi (Miley-Dyer) for believing in our sport and to Sophie (Goldschmidt) leading the WSL as a strong woman.”
The Vans US Open of Surfing is a World Surf League QS 10,000 event, the highest WSL event ranking possible. This is based on the fact that the competition is held at a premium venue and the competition level is fierce. Winners in both the women’s and men’s competitions can add 10,000 points to their WSL rankings.
Though a runner-up was disappointing for Courtney, she ended the competition in excellent form and with a different career highlight, becoming the most recent Huntington Beach Surfing Walk of Fame inductee.
“This week has been incredible and anytime I have the chance to perform in front of my hometown it’s just very special,” Conlogue said. “I’m really happy for Sage, it was really well-deserved and a fun Final. Thanks so much to everyone who came down to cheer us on.”
Yago fired right out of the gates in the final around with the day’s top single-scoring wave of a near perfect 9.27.
The high-flying antics of Yago came firing right out of the gates on finals day with the day’s top single-scoring wave of a near-perfect 9.27 after soaring through the air and landing it smoothly. The Brazilian CT elite surfer’s first QS 10,000 victory catapulted him 46 spots to number 4 in the QS rankings.
“I came out of my house with a goal to win this event and I did it. I can’t even explain how happy I am right now,” Yago said.
Alongside the surfing, the Vans US Open of Surfing also hosted skateboarding and BMX competitions. In the Vans Showdown Finals, Proteam athlete pro-skater Nora Vasconcellos snagged fourth.
Swatch was on-board with on-site activities including a meet-and-greet with Nora, a yoga session with Tia Blanco, Coco Ho and Courtney Conlogue, live music, and a raffle for fun Swatch prizes like the stylish event watch and VIP swag bag. It was the second year that Swatch presented the Vans US Open of Surfing, and it certainly won’t be the last. As we look ahead to surfing’s debut in the Olympic Games in Tokyo next year, we can’t wait to see what our Proteam Athletes accomplish along the way.