Red Bull surfers Jordy Smith and Julian Wilson performed brilliantly at the Quicksilver Pro France, stop number eight on the 2011 ASP World Tour...
Competing at La Graviere in Hossegor, Australian wave rider Julian Wilson made it all the way to his first ever final this week.
With his first title tantalizingly close, Wilson went into a final battle with 17-year-old Gabriel Medina from Brazil.
The two pulled some exceptional moves on a series of perfect one metre waves. But Medina, in only his second event as an ASP Top 34 member, was outstanding and full of confidence after beating Kelly Slater along the way. Wilson pushed Medina close but the Brazilian wunderkind performed one high-risk move after another, building a lead he never looked like relinquishing.
Wilson eventually finished second but he was chuffed with his performance after beating several of the tour's big names.
'Everything feels good and I’m very happy to be here on the podium,' said Wilson. 'It’s been a great event for me and congratulations to Gabriel [Medina] for his incredible run. I have so many amazing memories of watching this event as a kid, seeing Andy [Irons] and Kelly [Slater] go for it and to be in it now is a very special feeling. I’m hoping to improve in the coming events and looking forward to Portugal.'
On his way to the final, Wilson beat fellow Red Bull surfer Jordy Smith (below) in the semis. Still, it was an impressive comeback by South African surfer Smith, who was back competing for the first time since picking up an injury in Tahiti. He eventually finished equal third and remains fifth in the ASP World Rankings.
'I’m really happy with third, it’s a good result for me,' said Smith. 'To be honest, I’m just happy to be back in the water. It feels great to be back and I just couldn’t get into the right waves until the end of that semi-final.'
The next stop is the Rip Curl Pro Portugal from October 15-24.
- Check out the highlights from Quicksilver Pro France
- Official ASP World Tour website
- More surfing at redbull.com