Sun And Surfers Shine On Day 3 Essential Costa Rica Surf Pro October 07 2018

Carlos Muñoz turned in the highest score combination for Costa Rica (Courtesy Luis Eduarte, RPM TV)

After on and off heavy downpours for the first two days of the WSL Essential Costa Rica Surf Pro, sunny skies greeted surfers and fans yesterday. The weather did not disappoint, and neither did the wave conditions or level of performances.

Crowds of spectators flocked to the Best Western in north Jaco, trading in rain umbrellas for beach ones, to watch a level of surfing that affirmed the Jaco beach break and talent as world class. Morning waves were clean, with 3 to 5 feet sets before the wind switched onshore as the Round 3 Mens heats finished. Sixteen surfers continue into Finals Day, beginning at 8 a.m sharp today. 

Ticos Carlos Muñoz, Jair Perez,and Noe Mar McGonagle all advanced to the Quarter Finals while Rubiana Brownell edged out fellow Tica competitor Eva Woodland by a half of a point to secure a spot for the women. The day saw the farewell of top level performers who nonetheless all turned in noteworthy executions of their surfing abilities. 

Mens Quarter Finalists Emerge 

The eight men who will dual it out in man to man heats are Jose ("JJ") Lopez of Venezuela, Chauncey Robinson of the U.S.A., Brazilians Wesley Leite and Luel Felipe, Lucca Messinas of Peru along with nationals Carlos Muñoz, Jair Perez and Noe Mar Mcgonagle of Costa Rica. In Saturday's action, Ticos Anthony Fillingim and Tomàs King both advanced out of their Round 3 heats before bidding farewell to the event in Round 4. Both surfers received a hearty round of applause from the predominantly national crowd of spectators.

Anthony Fillingim continued through Round 4 on Saturday 

Surfers Sam Reidy, Oscar Urbina and Sebastian Mora all competed in Round 3 but did not advance. Reidy displayed a glimpse of his talent in Round 2 on Friday. With a 13.27 combo including a 7.5 ride, the young surfer from Dominical won his heat to advance into the third round. 

Jair Perez finished Round 4 with a two point combo of 15.00, surpassing fellow Tico qualifier Noe Mar. (Courtesy, Luis Eduarte/RPM TV) 

The highest two point wave combination of Round 3 was turned in by Jose "JJ" Lopez whose 15.77  (9.17 and 8.37) was almost matched by Carlos Muñoz's 15.73. In Round 4, Brazilian Luel Felipe took the highest wave total honors with a 16.27, again followed closely by Muñoz's 15.84. At this point in the game, technicality and wave completion are crucial.

Women's Quarter Finalists Decided

The women's performances were no less action packed than the mens. Meah Collins of the U.S., ranked 53rd overall on the WQS Tour, produced the highest wave combo of 17.54 (9.17 and 8.37) in Round 4, bettering her third round score by more than 4 points. Tia Blanco of Puerto Rico/U.S. was on top of her game with a 17.23 two point wave total in Round 2. Blanco surfed the same break two years ago to win the ISA World Surfing Games. 

Goofy footed Rubiana Brownell enjoying the "best waves I`ve ever seen in Jaco" (Courtesy Lois Solano/Surfing Nation)

"I'm really liking the wave right now. It a different side that I hadn't seen before. The familiarity of this event, from the commentators to the beach marshalls are all people I know from the national events. The support I feel is amazing. Usually only my Dad is able to come to my competitions so to have my Mom here, along with many of my sponsors, is awesome." - Rubiana Brownell, Costa Rica 

Rubiana Brownell of Playa Avellanas, Costa Rica will join Collins and Blanco today along with Tessa Thyssen of France, Leticia Canales Bilbao of Spain, Candelaria and Valentina Resano of Nicaragua and Rachel Presti, representing Germany. 

Although Costa Rican surfers Coral Wiggins, Eva Woodland and Paulina Summers did not advance, all three are active on the WQS North American Junior Tour. Woodland is the most experienced of the three and currently in 9th position in rankings. 

Rosanny Alvarez of Venezuela had her home crowd from Venezuela cheering  as she advanced from her Round 2 heat with a 12.60. Unfortunately she didn't make it out of Round 3 but is content with her performance in the event and the support from her country including fellow Venezuelan Jose Lopez. She is excited to get to Peru for the next qualifying event. 

Rosanna Alvarez after an impressive Round 2 appearance 

At The End Of The Day 

The last day of the Essential Costa Rica Surf Pro promises to be an exciting ending to an excellent event run by the World Surf League in conjunction with producers RPM TV. Carlos Brenes of the Federation of Surf Costa Rica and Announcer for the WSL will continue to convey the scores and the heat details from the main tent alongside WSL judges and media representatives.

The ICT (Costa Rica Tourism Board), the main sponsor of the event, will have a special tree planting at the end of the day in collaboration with Costa Verdes. Several national surfers will partake in important enviromental activity.

Project Costa Verdes (Courtesy Luis Eduarte/RPM TV)

Costa Rica is the home of world class surfers and a culture that defines it as one of the happiest places on the planet. It contains 2% of the world's biodiversity and its people care about the ocean and overall environment as much as they do maintaining a peaceful demeanor. Many visitors understand this concept, which is why the country continues to draw surfers from all over the world.

Perhaps surfer Tia Blanco captured this sentiment best yesterday:  "At the end of the day you have to take in the waves, the environment, the people, and just have fun."

See you on the beach! 

Sources: Adriana Hernandez RPM TV , Andrew Nichols World Surf League 

Author Kate Hanley

Pura Vida Board Gear has been promoting national surf since 2013. Based in Jaco, Costa Rica we specialize in custom boardsocks and limited edition lifestyle gear. Follow us on instagram @puravidaboardgear.