Finals Day Called ON: CT Finale Will Crown Men’s 2018 World Surfing ChampionDec 17, 2018
The final day of the Billabong Pipe Masters in Memory of Andy Irons, the final stop on the 2018 World Surf League (WSL) Men’s Championship Tour (CT) and final jewel of the Vans Triple Crown of Surfing (VTCS), has been called ON in 6-to-8 foot NW swell with light offshore easterly winds at Pipe and Backdoor.
“Finals Day is on at the Billabong Pipe Masters, our final event of 2018,” said Kieren Perrow, WSL Commissioner. “We have great waves on offer at Pipe and Backdoor and are excited to see the world’s best surfers compete for the World Title and the Vans Triple Crown Title today. We also have the Women’s Pipe Invitational on standby following the men’s Semifinals. Best of luck to all of our competitors today.”
The 2018 Men's World Title will be decided today with only two competitors in contention for the win: Gabriel Medina (BRA) and Julian Wilson (AUS).
Medina will need to make the Final in order to clinch his second World Title. He will surf in Heat 2 of Round 4 against Michel Bourez (PYF) and Sebastian Zietz (HAW).
If Medina falls short of the Final, Wilson can capture his maiden World Title if he wins first or second place at the Billabong Pipe Masters. To give himself the opportunity, Wilson first needs to take down 2018 CT Rookie Yago Dora (BRA) and former Pipe Master and 2012 WSL Champion Joel Parkinson (AUS). Today will be Parkinson's final competition day of his career before he officially retires from professional surfing.
The Men's World Title Scenarios at the Billabong Pipe Masters:
- If Gabriel Medina finishes 1st or 2nd at the Billabong Pipe Masters, he wins the World Title;
- If Gabriel Medina finishes 3rd at the Billabong Pipe Masters, Julian Wilson will need to finish 1st;
- If Gabriel Medina finishes 5th-25th, Julian Wilson will need a 2nd or 1st at Pipe.
Vans Triple Crown of Surfing Race Narrows to Final Four
At this stage, only four surfers remain in contention for the prestigious VANS Triple Crown of Surfing title. Jesse Mendes (BRA) leads the rankings and is closely followed by Parkinson, Jordy Smith (ZAF) and Joan Duru (FRA).
Smith will be up first this morning against Ryan Callinan (AUS) and Conner Coffin (USA) in the opening heat of Round 4.
Current VTCS leader Mendes will be in Heat 4 of Round 4 against fellow VTCS contender Joan Duru (FRA) and 11-time WSL Champion Kelly Slater (USA).