Chelsea Tuach was in dominant form at the Pan Am Games yesterday, booking a quarter-final berth. (GP)
Chelsea Tuach is poised for more surfing glory.
Barbados’ lone representative at the prestigious 13th Pan American Surfing Games in Peru, advanced into the quarter-finals with an authoritative display of surfing yesterday.
Tuach continued to fly the Barbados flag high when she again dominated her heat in the overhead waves on offer at the famed Punta Rocas right point break.
In a heat where she faced Madeline Ryan from Puerto Rico, Sanoa Dempfle-Orin from Canada and Carol Bonelli from Brazil, Tuach demonstrated her skill and experience posting an excellent wave score of 7.67 (out of 10).
She had a back-up of 3.83 for a heat total of 11.50 to Dempfle-Orin’s 7.1, Bonelli’s 5.8 and Ryan’s 4.5.
With this victory, Tuach progressed to tomorrow’s quarter-finals where she will have a titanic battle against Lucia Indurain of Argentina and Chile’s duo of Loren Fica and Jessica Anderson.
“I am super happy to have taken the heat win today. This is a very tricky wave and it all comes down to wave selection. There is a lot of water moving and a lot of paddling as well, so fitness is also a factor out there. I will be doing my very best to continue to advance as my goal is to bring a medal home to Barbados,” Tuach said shortly after her heat.
Tuach had also emphatically won her Round One heat on Tuesday against the No.1 Chilean surfer, Jessica Anderson, who was second. Canadian Hanna Scott and Argentine Lucía Consoleto, who were also contesting the heat, were third and fourth, respectively.
Tuach caught the first wave and rode it with power and flow to turn in the best score of the heat – a 6.5 out of a possible 10.
Tuach then struggled to get back into the line-up in the pounding surf on the inside, but with just two minutes to go was able to secure a back-up score of 4.3 to secure her win.
“It was hectic out there with a lot of water moving and not too many opportunities to catch quality waves. So I was happy to have found that first wave that stood up for me on the inside and put me in a good position in the heat where I just needed a small back-up to take the win,” Tuach said.
During the pre-competition opening ceremony, PASA president Karin Sierralta stressed the historic nature of this event.
“During the coming week we will be witnessing history in the making. This event, which has a record 15 nations competing with over 200 athletes, is the first 2020 Tokyo Olympics pre-qualifying event to be held in this region,” he said.
Next year’s Pan American Surfing Games will be the qualifying event for the Pan American Games slated for Lima in 2019.
It will feature surfing for the first time and will be an Olympic qualifying event. Tuach is seeking to get a good seeding and gain valuable experience for next year’s event in pursuit of her goal of representing Barbados at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. (EZS/PR)