The Freshwater Pro, better known to others as the Surf Ranch is back for the second consecutive year in Lemoore, California. This is a short event as Championship tour number eight only runs from the 20th-22nd AEST of September.
The Surf Ranch contest has some similarities to the other contests held in the natural environment. The point system is scored on your best two waves in the round of 36 then the top eight advance to the finals which once again are scored on the two waves you ride. The Ranch has some positives and is definitely entertaining with surfers popping airs and riding 10 second barrels to the viewers delight. This is definitely anyone’s game.
Gabriel Medina took out the first ever surf ranch contest in 2018 and will be looking for another win as he continues to climb the standings. Medina is now ranked fourth and has climbed three positions after a runners up against Owen Wright in the final at Teahupoo. Medina has reached the final in the past two contests and is red hot coming into the Ranch contest.
After wearing the yellow jersey for the previous contest at Teahupoo, Kolohe Andino has now been pushed back to third in the rankings, following his round of 16 exit to wildcard Kauli Vaast. Filipe Toledo and Jordy Smith make up the top three.
Owen Wright seems to be back to his best after numerous injuries had sidelined him in the past. Wright’s year really began in J-Bay, after he had a quarterfinal loss to Medina, then backed it up with winning the title at Teahupoo only weeks back against Medina. It seems like the battle of Medina and Wright at the moment. Wright has jumped ten positions in the last two contests to be inside the top ten. Will he continue his form at the Ranch to set his eyes on a world title?
In his first year on tour Hawaiian Seth Moniz is having the type of year any rookie could ask for. Moniz has slipped inside the top ten in the rankings after jumping five positions after a career best semi final loss to Medina. In a small field, Moniz is clearly the best to come out of Hawaii besides John John Florence this year and is showing some of that skill and attack you see from Hawaiians like John John Florence and Seb Zietz.
After missing the first four events through injury, Adriano de Souza probably won the best heat of the tournament at Teahupoo. Souza and Italo Ferreira went head to head in the round of 32 and with multiple insane barrels, Souza came out on top. He ended coming fifth after losing to Jordy Smith in the quarterfinals. That was by far the best performance for Adriano de Souza in 2019 and you may see the veteran carry some of that form into the Surf Ranch.
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