WSL Quiksilver and Roxy Pro in France
Gabriel Medina wins Quiksilver Pro
When Gabriel Medina first joined the world tour in 2011 he announced his arrival by immediately winning the Quiksilver Pro France. The world learned his name when Medina became the first Brazilian to ever win a world title last year. But one title win that didn't kill his hunger. From Round 1 all the way through the final Medina put on a next-level performance. From tubes to turns to big airs, he was virtually unstoppable and, as a result, came away with his first win of the season.
After a lackluster start to the year Medina's found his rhythm over the course of the last several events. Finishing second in Tahiti, third in California and now first in France, he's climbed up to the fifth spot in the world rankings. "I'm still a long way off, but hopefully I can just keep this momentum going," he said when asked about his chances of defending his 2014 title.
Tyler Wright wins Roxy Pro
Tyler Wright's been due for a win all season, but just hasn't been able to put it all together. That all changed at the Roxy Pro France where she finally found her groove and got the monkey off her back. "It's been such an interesting season," said Wright. "I've been in a little bit of a state of confusion as far as what's going on, but I finally realized the difference between someone that doesn't care and someone that does. And I care."
Tapping into the rhythm she's been struggling to find, Wright's surfing was both aggressive and precise. On the final day she was able find the waves she needed to take her to the top. "I was just feeling it," said Wright after the final.
Tyler and Owen Wright
The most dangerous (and only) brother/sister duo on the world tour, the bond between Tyler and Owen Wright is a strong one. "It's great to be able to be in her corner and cheer her on," said Owen before the final.
A blue-collar power surfer, Bede Durbidge made his second final of the year at the Quik Pro. His goal for the season was to crack the top ten in the ratings, and he now sits 11th. With two events to go, if he can maintain his current form he may even surprise himself with how far he goes.
Finding her rhythm during the back half of the WSL season, rookie Tatiana Weston-Webb put in a good effort against Wright in the final but ended up coming up just a little short. "So honored to have done so well against so many great competitors, and gotten second in the final," she posted on Instagram.
Historically, Mick Fanning's been able to use the European leg of the tour to help catapult him to his three world titles. He had a solid run in France, making the quarterfinals and is still clinging to the top spot on the WSL ratings.
Adriano De Souza
The agony and the ecstasy of the world title race. Adriano De Souza finished third at the Quik Pro, but finds himself 450 points out of the pole position. Should he be able to overtake Fanning in the last two events he'll be the second Brazilian to win a world title in as many years.
John John Florence
John John Florence was on fire in the early rounds of the Quik Pro. One of most dynamic surfers on tour, hands down, his combination of deft tube riding and full-speed power carves had the judges swooning. This perfect 10 in Round 1 got Florence off on the good foot. He finally got upended in the quarterfinals.
Native son Jeremy Flores gave the French locals on the beach plenty to cheer about as he stood tall in some of the best conditions to hit the southwest of France all year. To say the waves were all-time is an understatement.
This was Stephanie Gilmore's first contest back since breaking her leg at Margaret River at the beginning of the year. And while she may not have donned a jersey in the last few months, her surfing was a good as ever. She ended up losing to California's Sage Erickson in Round 4.
Everyone's favorite surfer, Dane Reynolds, got a wildcard into the Quik Pro and put it to good use. He ended up losing in Round 3, but as he promised before the event started, he turned his prize money over to a charity in South Africa that helps keep kids off the street by involving them in surfing.
Carissa Moore's been pushing hard all year to try and win her third world title. Going back and forth with California's Courtney Conlogue, Moore was able to regain the ratings lead after Conlogue lost early. With one more event to go the title is now Moore's to lose.
Coming off a WQS win in Portugal earlier in the month, Kolohe Andino pulled out all the stops in France, where he beat 11-time world champ Kelly Slater in Round 3. Flying into Round 5, he was eventually upended by Durbidge.
Slater may have lost early, but he made good use of his time while he was in France.