The World Surf League (WSL) Los Cabos Open of Surf Women's Qualifying Series (QS) 6000 began today in two-to-three foot waves with the wind creating some texture on the face. Rounds 1 and 2 were completed in their entirety, setting up Round 3 where the higher seeded surfers begin to make their appearances and face competitive up-and-coming challengers. Following the Women's QS6000, the Junior Women completed Quarterfinal matchups and have Semifinals set in stone with a stacked field of international and North America region surfers.
Beginning her Los Cabos Open of Surf campaign in the Junior Women's event, Alyssa Spencer (USA) has been learning more about Zippers with each heat - continuing to find the gems on offer. Posting Round 2's highest single-wave score of a 7.00 (out of a possible 10), the 13-year-old surfer put her experience and knowledge of the priority system into action and was able to find herself on the winning side of yet another heat.
"I just waited for a set and that one came and it lined up really nice," Spencer said. "I didn't think it was going to be that good of a wave when it started out, looking a bit mushy, but then I got going and put in a few turns. I wanted to get priority and hold onto it for a set like that and it worked out really well. I definitely didn't have a good backup until the end but it's really important to find one with all these capable of putting up big scores. I have confidence after going through some Junior heats and now making this QS heat feels great."
Summer Macedo (HAW) took control of the day in both the Women's QS6000 and Junior events. Posting the Juniors Quarterfinal's highest single-wave score of 8.33, and heat total, 14.50, the Hawaiian was not swayed by the smaller conditions. Macedo will be unable to earn any points in the Junior Tour but is elated to get more heats under her belt and prepare for the main event which is where her focus lies.
"It's actually the best it's been the whole competition and I played the waiting game which was pretty nerve-racking," Macedo said. "I can't believe that 8 came and sitting in fourth priority I thought maybe something will come and then added a six so it was an amazing feeling. It was good not to wait around after the QS heat and get right into the Juniors to keep the rhythm with the ocean. I've made some priority mistakes with it being so small so I'm learning from that and taking everything in."
Just prior to Spencer's rousing performance, Alyssa Lock (AUS) put together a solid heat totaling 11.17 - including a 6.17 in the process. Hailing from the Gold Coast, Lock is here on the shores of Costa Azul looking for a good result to take back home with her strategy paying dividends thus far. She also earned a win in the Juniors Quarterfinal after her win in the QS and is poised for a good result in both events.
"I definitely got my confidence going in the Junior event to prepare for the QS which is what I'm here for," Lock said. "It's quiet and challenging but if you have the ocean on your side and the waves come your way you just have to surf the best you can. For a day like today that 6.17 is a good way to start and earn a score like that. Part of my gameplan was just to stay busy - there's no use in waiting for a wave that isn't coming so I just wanted to take what I could and work them out. 15. I don't want to pass up opportunities waiting for priority but it's definitely in the back of my head."
Kirra Pinkerton (USA) fell short in her Junior Women's event and is now fully invested into the Women's QS6000 event - at just age 13 along with Spencer. Pinkerton has looked focus at the event despite the early exit in the Juniors and proved so with a Round 2 heat win.
"I just try to stay calm and see today as new day, a new contest," Pinkerton said. "I've just tried to catch the best waves out there and not get an interference because that's the worst thing you can do when conditions are smaller and you need a score. I'm catching on to priority and used it pretty well in that heat being on the sets with first priority - it was definitely a big key in winning that heat. It felt good with that heat being so close and find a wave that allowed me to do two turns with there not being much to do on these waves.