Bernd Roediger was a standout on day one. | Photo: APP World Tour
OAHU, Hawaii - After one of the more challenging days filled with heavy cloud cover, rain and challenging conditions on the opening day, the opposite was the case yesterday at the 2017 Sunset Beach Pro, the first stop of the new APP World Tour, with clear blue skies and groomed, beautiful surf for what was to be an epic day of competition for both Men & Women.
Kicking off with Main Event competition for the Men's division, we saw dominant performances from the majority of the top seeds, as they stepped up to the occasion and posted solid scores in pumping Sunset Beach conditions.
Tahiti's Poenaiki Raioha set the tone for what was an epic day of action, after an incredible duel with Australia's Keahi de Aboitiz. | Photo: APP World Tour
Tahitian Poenaiki Raioha (F-One) put on a stunning display of performance surfing yesterday at the iconic Sunset Beach, a performance that exuded a polished, powerful and exceptionally fluid approach to the wave that earned him the equal highest scoring heat total of the day (17.24).
However, what made the heat even more entertaining was the show that Keahi de Aboitiz (JP Australia) put on to battle for the heat win. The duel saw Poenaiki come out on top, but clearly showed that Keahi is back and is a serious threat here on the 2017 APP World Tour.
Both Athletes advanced on directly to Round 3 and will most likely be competing again today at Sunset Beach.
Maui's Kai Lenny is back and hungry to regain his Title here at the Sunset Beach Pro, looking as dangerous as ever. | Photo: APP World Tour
Kai Lenny (Naish) took to the water in Heat 10 and did not disappoint. While his heat did not feature the best sets of the day, he put on a solid performance that clearly stated his intentions here at Stop 1 of the 2017 APP World Tour at Sunset.
Kai is becoming one of the expert competitors out at Sunset Beach, after a stunning performance at the WSL shortboard event back in January and with 4x Sunset Beach Pro Titles already secured over the last 7 years.
There is no doubt that Kai will want to regain this honor after it has been in the hands of 2x World Champion from Brazil, Caio Vaz (SIC Maui) for the last 2 years. Watch all the action as it happens LIVE when the competition should resume today at Sunset Beach from 8:00am Hawaii standard time.
The Women take center stage at Sunset Beach and do not disappoint, with Fiona Wylde putting on a flawless performance. | Photo: APP World Tour
Fiona Wylde (Starboard) from Oregon put on the performance of a lifetime out at Sunset yesterday, matching Poenaiki Raioha's (F-One) overall heat total and stunning both judges and audience alike with her wave selection, positioning and surfing.
Picking off one of the most beautiful waves of the day just as it seemed as though conditions might be slowing just a little bit, Fiona drove down the line and complete a series of critical turns to secure the single highest wave score of the event so far (9.57) and equalling the Tahitian's heat score total of 17.24 - an incredible performance from the young talent and Racing World Champion from Oregon.
Women's performance level sky rockets with more dominant performances from Nicole Pacelli & Shakira Westdorp (pictured). | Photo: APP World Tour
However, Werner Paddles athlete Fiona Wylde was not alone in posting a stellar performance in the opening round of women's competition, as Australia's Shakira Westdorp (Starboard) and Brazil's Nicole Pacelli both put on impressive performances to dominate their first round heats and advance directly onto the 3rd round.
With 2017 being the first year that the Women are given Sunset Beach as an arena for their Opening stop on the APP World Tour, it seems fitting that they should step up so impressively, as we ot only saw these leading 3 women set a new bar of performance surfing, but we also see a host of talent behind them, inclusive of course of 3x World Champion Izzi Gomez, stepping up to be counted here on the APP World Tour.
Check out the highlights from yesterday's action below and join us LIVE for today's action at appworldtour.com
To see more news from the APP World Tour, click HERE.