|Nilbie Blancada (red jersey) wins in the Maldives Open 2014 surfing tournament. Photo courtesy of James O'donnell.|
In the Women’s Division final of the inaugural event of Maldives Open 2014, it was 2013 ASC Women’s Champion Rina Kitazawa from Japan getting the win over local favorite and resort surf guide Amy Kotch (USA), Cloud Nine’s Nilbie Blancada (PHL), and 5-time Indonesian Women’s Champion Yasnyiar “Bonne” Gea (INA). She admitted that she didn’t expect to win the event, as the wave is a left and she is a naturalfooter. “I didn’t think I would win, as there was Amy and Bonne who were goofyfooters and they are such good and experienced surfers, much older than me. But the wave is so good here and I got a few nice waves, so in the end I could win,” she explained.
This Maldives 2014 event was brought to you by Asian Surfing Championships (ASC) in cooperation with the Maldives Bodyboarding Associatio. This ASC Grade 3 event, with a total prize purse of $15,000 over the three divisions of Men’s Open, Women’s, and Bodyboarding, took place from September 3-7 at Lohis Point.
Lohis Point at the Adaaran Select Hudhuran Fushi Resort is a machine-like left-hand wave that peels perfectly down the coral reef for often hundreds of meters, and has been the site of ASP World Qualifying Series (the world’s top professional surfing organization) events in the past due to its quality, consistency, and accessibility. Offering up barrel sections as well as steep wall sections for carves, lip hacks, and the occasional punt section, this wave will allow the competitors to display their full repertoire of maneuvers during their heats, and often all on the same wave.