All photos by WSL Imagery Press Room/Kirstin/Scholtz
Hawaii’s Carissa Moore is on a roll. The 22 year old just won the prestigious Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach in Australia, her second World Tour win in a row in 2015. Amazingly, it was Moore’s third win in as many years at Bells. As the WSL Tour heads to stop number three in Western Australia, the question has to be asked . . . can anyone beat the two-time World Champion?
Moore’s domination hasn’t been limited to this year’s first two events. She crushed the competition at the Target Maui Pro last December to take the last contest of the 2014 season. That’s three World Tour wins in a row for Carissa, a feat that hasn’t been accomplished in many years. And they weren’t just average wins. From Round 1 to the Finals Moore owned it. She systematically dismantled her opponents with extremely powerful rail work and precise surfing. If she surfed in some of the men’s heats she could have humbled some of the guys on tour for sure.
If you look at each of the other Top 5 surfers on tour – Stephanie Gilmore, Tyler Wright, Sally Fitzgibbons, Courtney Conlogue, and Lakey Peterson – none of them appear to have an answer to match Moore’s power game. Even Tyler Wright, considered by many to be the most powerful female surfer on the planet, has not been able to out-muscle Moore.
Those close to Carissa have said that when she had to give the 2014 World Title back to 6-time World Champ Stephanie Gilmore that it lit a fire. You could see it in her eyes during the Target Maui Pro. When Steph clinched the title before the final rounds Moore turned into an animal, and has not been beaten since! It’s obvious her intentions are to bring the World Title back to her island home.
The best part about Moore’s streak is her humility. Her smile is everywhere. Her respect and compliments for her fellow opponents are the first words out of her mouth after a heat win. She stays on the beach for 30 minutes post-heat just to sign autographs for every last grom. Even when atop the surfing world Moore is gracious at all times. These are all attributes of a true champion, a people’s champion.
As the World Surf League transitions to stop #3 at Margaret River, Moore will look to make it four wins in a row. It just so happens that Carissa is the two-time defending champion at the venue. The wave at Margaret’s is an open-ocean, powerful reef break – you know, the type of wave that suits her surfing perfectly. This will make it even harder for her opponents. Oh yeah, and then there’s the factor of the forecasted swell for the event. A beast of a swell is bearing down on the region with 12-15 foot open ocean swell on it’s way for the first two days of the waiting period. That translates to 3X to 5X overhead people! The whole surf world is on pins and needles waiting to see the best charge the big stuff. Since Moore is from Hawaii and comfortable in heavy situations, she will have an edge on her competitors if the swell is truly a macker.
Watch Carissa defend her Drug Aware Margaret River Pro title and go for her fourth consecutive win on April 15th (Aussie time) at worldsurfleague.com!