Photo credits: Brian Bielman / www.appworldtour.com
Sunset Beach delivers great conditions for a spectacular finals day that saw dramatic action from start to finish and Champions crowned at Stop #1 of the 2017 APP World Tour.
The day started out with anxiety for organizers as there was only small surf on offer at daybreak, with the next swell scheduled to arrive the following evening, too late for the contest to capitalize on with the closing of the waiting period the 24th.
However, as the sun came up and athletes and organizers ramped up for the start of the quarterfinals, as if by cue, Sunset turned on and delivered what was a magical day of competition, propelling the performance from the last 16 Men and Last four Women to a whole new level.
After four epic days of competition at this iconic North Shore wave, Maui’s Kai Lenny and Florida’s Izzi Gomez were able to secure victory at the 2017 Sunset Beach Pro and kick of their World Championship Tour season in style.
Kai Lenny reasserts his winning form, making a clear statement to the world at the start of the 2017 APP World Tour Season
While Kai Lenny has four Surfing World Titles under his belt as well as four Sunset Beach Pro Titles, it has been two years now that Kai hasn’t found his winning edge on the APP World Tour, with the Title going to Caio Vaz from Brazil in both 2015 and 2016.
However, as we kicked off the 2017 edition of the Sunset Beach Pro, it was clear that Kai Lenny had well and truly showed up and meant business, building momentum through the rounds on his way to the Final, and with a stunning and crisp display of performance surfing.
While his performances through the rounds were impressive, it was as if he found a whole extra gear in the final, combo’ing the field within the first 10 minutes and putting on a clinic of next level surfing. With a perfect 10 and an 8.5 in his scoreline, he posted not only the highest heat score total, but secured the well-deserved victory at home in Sunset Beach.
The message was clear: Kai has been at the forefront of the sport since the beginning, but has once again surged forward, taking all his experience from his pursuits across the complete spectrum of sports he excels in and channeling them into a stunning performance today at Sunset Beach.
Izzi Gomez, starts the year off as she means to continue: on top, as she kicks off her campaign for a 4th World Title in 2017
Izzi Gomez (Starboard) continues to hold the reins at the top of the Women’s ratings, a position that she has held now for the past three years, and a position that she seems unwilling to relinquish any time soon, despite her competitors’ best efforts.
While the competition was certainly no walk in the park for Izzi (she had to go through the repechage to make it back into the Main Event and faced formidable competition in the Final), there is no doubt that the young Floridian’s surfing continues to develop at an astonishing rate.
For a first year event for the women out at Sunset Beach in 2017, the APP World Tour was proud to witness its leading ladies not only taking to the water at Sunset, but put on a show to remember, and make a statement as to just how far the women’s side of the sport has come over the past 4 years.
One thing is for sure, Izzi is still leading the charge, but right on her heels are some of the fiercest and most talented competitors imaginable, a fact that only further qualifies her incredible winning form.
Check out the replay and highlights from today and all four days of competition at