Local boy Derek Peters. Photo: WSL / Morris
Jul 23, 2016

Trials Day at Vans US Open of Surfing

HUNTINGTON BEACH, California/USA (Saturday, July 23, 2016) – The first day of the 2016 Vans US Open of Surfing kicked off today in four-to-six foot (1 - 2 metre) waves in Huntington Beach, California. The day moved through Round 1 and the Quarterfinals of the men’s Trials, where surfers got one step closer to earning the opportunity to gain entry into the Vans US Open of Surfing Men’s Qualifying Series 10,000 event.

Huntington Beach hero Derek Peters (USA) blazed through the last round of the Quarterfinals to earn a spot in the Semifinals. Peters unleashed a series of progressive maneuvers to claim a solid lead with a strong 7.27 and 5.67. Cory Arrambide (USA) earned the second position in the heat with a 12.73 combined score, which secures him a place alongside Peters in the Semifinals tomorrow.

“Only the winner gets to go through to the main event so I am not getting too excited about anything yet,” Peters said. “But I am happy to still be going for sure. Hopefully I will get some fun waves in the morning and do it all over again. I know how to surf these waves, I just have to relax and take a deep breath. If the waves come to you, they come to you.”  

The opening heat of the Quarterfinals witnessed Lucca Mesinas (PER) take the heat win with Rafael Teixeira (BRA)  finishing in the second position, dispatching competitors Keoni Yan (HAW) and Kilian Garland (USA). Yan posted the highest heat score of the day in Round 1 Heat 2, a commanding 14.80, but despite his strong showing earlier in the day. Mesinas earned an excellent 8.17 in Round 1 Heat 3, the highest single wave score of the day, and he will try to keep this momentum into the next round tomorrow morning.

“I feel great to make it through to the next round of the Trials because this is a hard event,” said Mesinas. “I am feeling super relaxed because I know the next round will be hard. I am from Peru but my uncle lives in Costa Mesa so I come to Huntington Beach all the time to surf this wave. I enjoy surfing here and I am super stoked and relaxed going in tomorrow.”

Matt Passaquindici. Photo: WSL / Morris

The second Quarterfinal match-up witnessed an intense battle as the surfers exchanged multiple lead changes in the dying minutes of the heat. Seth Moniz (HAW) took early control and continued to better his scores to secure his win. The last three minutes of the heat saw dramatic exchanges between Matt Passaquindici (USA), Nolan Rapoza (USA) and Dane Gudauskas (USA). The second position was captured by Passaquindici, a local favorite in Huntington Beach. Passaquindici locked in a critical ride in the last seconds to earn an opportunity to advance through to the QS event.  

“I am going through a rollercoaster of emotions because I thought I lost, but I just have to stop falling because I would have had a good score on one of those rights,” Passaquindici said. “I’m happy I made it. My game plan for tomorrow is just to get busy and nail two scores. I have been surfing here all of my life and it is amazing to have all of my friends and family supporting me on the beach. I feel so at home and it is just another day on southside for me.”

Jake Marshall (USA) and Kei Kobayashi (USA) will also compete in the Semifinals of the Trials event tomorrow after a strong finish in heat 3 after securing the first and second position, respectively.

“I definitely wanted to get a quick start and make sure I got a few scores on the board so I would not need a low score at the end of the heat,”Marshall said. “I ended up getting a few good ones and I am stoked to make it through. I am excited to surf again tomorrow morning. I was stoked to get a spot in the trials and give it a run. It is great to go surfing out here in Huntington Beach. There are a ridiculous amount of people on the beach watching and there are super fun waves for contests.”

Surfline, official forecaster for the World Surf League, are calling for:

Fun size run of Southern Hemisphere SSW/S swells will prevail over the first weekend of competition (23rd-24th), before trending down through mid next week. Modest NW windswell blends in over the weekend to keep shape fairly peaky, before dropping next week. There’s more potential out of the tropics for next week, courtesy of Tropical Storm Frank, but there is still a good bit of uncertainty there. The last weekend of competition (30th-31st) could see a modest new SW trending SSW swell build in.

HB Pier. Photo: WSL / Van Kirk

Upcoming Vans US Open of Surfing Men’s QS10,000 Trials Upcoming Semifinal Matchups:

SF 1: Lucca Mesinas (PER), Rafael Teixeira (BRA), Seth Moniz (HAW), Matt Passaquindici (USA)
SF 2: Jake Marshall (USA),  Kei Kobayashi (USA), Derek Peters (USA), Cory Arrambide (USA) 

Vans US Open of Surfing Men’s QS10,000 Trials Quarterfinal Results:

QF 1: Lucca Mesinas (PER) 11.60, Rafael Teixeira (BRA) 8.67, Keoni Yan (HAW) 8.60, Kilian Garland (USA) 5.47 
QF 2: Seth Moniz (HAW) 12.40, Matt Passaquindici (USA) 10.70, Nolan Rapoza (USA) 10.47, Dane Gudauskas (USA) 9.63
QF 3: Jake Marshall (USA) 11.84, Kei Kobayashi (USA) 9.80, Kalani David (HAW) 6.16, Dylan Lightfoot (ZAF) 8.16
QF 4: Derek Peters (USA) 12.94, Cory Arrambide (USA) 12.73, Taylor Clark (USA) 11.74, Nic Hdez (USA) 4.80

Vans US Open of Surfing Men’s QS10,000 Trials Round 1 Results:

Heat 1: Kilian Garland (USA) 9.83, Dane Gudauskas (USA) 9.43, Kevin Schulz (USA) 9.00, Dimitri Ouvre (BLM) 8.40
Heat 2: Keoni Yan (HAW) 14.80, Seth Moniz (HAW) 12.43, Nathaniel Curran (USA) 12.17, Steven Peterson (PYF) 7.80
Heat 3: Matt Passaquindici (USA) 13.53, Lucca Mesinas (PER) 12.67, Tyler Gunter (USA) 8.80, Noah Schweizer (USA) 7.60
Heat 4: Nolan Rapoza (USA) 12.60, Rafael Teixeira (BRA) 10.53, Jean Da Silva (BRA) 9.80, Daniel Glenn (USA) 9.20
Heat 5: Kalani David (HAW) 11.83, Cory Arrambide (USA) 9.43, Flavio Nakagima (BRA) 9.17, Brad Ettinger (USA) 8.23
Heat 6: Kei Kobayashi (USA) 12.67, Nic Hdez (USA) 9.26, Joshua Burke (BRB) 7.80, Parker Coffin (USA) 6.53 
Heat 7: Taylor Clark (USA) 11.93, Dylan Lightfoot (ZAF) 11.00, Johnny Noris (USA) 7.27, Cole Houshmand (USA) 4.76
Heat 8: Derek Peters (USA) 13.53, Jake Marshall (USA) 11.33, Ian Crane (USA) 10.37, Dylan Graves (PRI) 9.17