The Vans US Open of Surfing will see the world’s best surfers as they compete in Stop No. 7 of 10 of the World Surf League Championship Tour.
The Vans US Open, taking place from 30 July – 5 August, will play a critical role in the 2018 WSL World Title race, which is currently led by six-time WSL Champion Stephanie Gilmore.
The Australian now wears the Jeep Leader Jersey after her win at the Corona Open JBay earlier this month.
Gilmore has yet to claim a CT win in Surf City but will look for a strong start in her opening heat against last year’s event winner Sage Erickson and the event wildcard, who will be determined by a one-heat trials event.
“Huntington is a totally different venue to the rest of the year and I’ve always struggled a bit, but I feel good heading into it,” said Gilmore.
“I feel excited about the current ratings and the processes I’m going through.
All the girls are ripping so, it’s just about staying focused and making sure I’m investing all my energy into each heat. I feel like I can get a good result. I just have to really apply myself there.”
Lakey Peterson, the 2012 event winner, returns home to California for this event.
The surfer from Santa Barbara, California sits just behind Gilmore in second place on the Jeep Leaderboard, hungry for her first World Title. She will be up against Coco Ho (HAW) and injury replacement Pauline Ado (FRA) in the first round.
“It’ll be nice to be at home and get that local crowd support,” Peterson said.
“We’ve been in Australia, which has a lot of Aussie support there, and Bianca (Buitendag) had that support in Jeffreys Bay, so that’ll be great to have that kind of hometown support.
I’ve done well at Huntington Beach in the past so I think it’s a great opportunity to keep chipping away at Steph (Gilmore). I’m just looking forward to some time at home and getting the jersey on while there.”
Facing ongoing health issues from contracting influenza during the Corona Open JBay, Tyler Wright (AUS) has withdrawn from next week’s Vans US Open of Surfing.
The Australian is the reigning World Champion and currently ranked No. 5 on the Jeep Leaderboard.
Surfline, forecast partner of the WSL, is calling for:
The first several days of the event window are looking relatively slow with a minor blend of Southern Hemisphere swells and local NW windswell on offer.
Heading through the end of next week into the final weekend of the event window we anticipate a slightly better mix of new SSW swell and NW windswell.
Vans US Open of Surfing Women’s CT Round 1 Matchups:
Heat 1: Carissa Moore (HAW), Nikki Van Dijk (AUS), Courtney Conlogue (USA)
Heat 2: Johanne Defay (FRA), Keely Andrew (AUS), Paige Hareb (NZL)
Heat 3: Stephanie Gilmore (AUS), Sage Erickson (USA), TBD
Heat 4: Lakey Peterson (USA), Coco Ho (HAW), Pauline Ado (FRA)
Heat 5: Tatiana Weston-Webb (BRA), Malia Manuel (HAW), Macy Callaghan (AUS)
Heat 6: Caroline Marks (USA), Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS), Bronte Macaulay (AUS)