The Nazaré Challenge was put on hold today after dangerous winds developed during the second heat of Round One. Tour officials decided to call the competition off to ensure the safety of the competitors. Event officials will make a call tomorrow morning at 7:00 a.m. WET for a possible 7:30 a.m. WET start.
“We saw the wind come up really strong out of the NW,” said Mike Parsons, WSL Big Wave Tour Commissioner. “The conditions were way too dangerous for the surfers. We went on hold to see what the conditions would do, but because we did not see a change, we have decided to pause the competition and look to finish the event tomorrow. There will still be solid swell and the forecast projects that there will be lighter winds. It was just too dangerous with the winds. The surfers could not get down the face. Their feedback was that it was way too hazardous out there.”
Prior to the competition being called off for the day, Round One Heat 1 witnessed Lucas Chianca (BRA), Billy Kemper (HAW), and Nathan Florence (HAW) earn their places into the Semifinals with solid mid-range scores. Peter Mel (USA), Alex Botelho (PRT), and Jamie Mitchell (AUS), defending Nazaré Challenge winner, will also advance to the next round after earning the top three places in Round One Heat 2. The remaining 12 competitors in Heats 3 and 4 will anxiously monitor the conditions and prepare for their potential start first thing tomorrow morning.
Nazaré Challenge Round 1 Results (H1 – 2):
Heat 1: Lucas Chianca (BRA) 17.63, Billy Kemper (HAW) 16.33, Nathan Florence (HAW) 14.31, João de Macedo (PRT) 11.56, Hugo Vau (PRT) 9.43, Pedro Calado (BRA) 7.13
Heat 2: Peter Mel (USA) 15.43, Alex Botelho (PRT) 14.23, Jamie Mitchell (AUS) 9.66, Tom Butler (GBR) 3.14, Carlos Burle (BRA) 0.00, Aaron Gold (HAW) 0.00
Nazaré Challenge Remaining Round 1 Match-Ups (H2 – 3):
Heat 3: Kai Lenny (HAW), Makuakai Rothman (HAW), Cristian Merello (CHL), Francisco Porcella (ITA), Natxo Gonzalez (EUK), Nic von Rupp (PRT)
Heat 4: Grant Baker (ZAF), Nic Lamb (USA), Tom Lowe (GBR), Ian Walsh (HAW), Antonio Silva (PRT), Kealii Mamala (HAW)