Pictured: A clash of world-class competitors unraveled with Alejo Muniz (BRA) separating himself from the pack. Credit: © WSL / Ryder
Former CT competitor and 2013 Vans US Open of Surfing victor Alejo Muniz (BRA) stunned the event with a brilliant performance alongside East Coast’s Evan Geiselman (USA), to eliminate current Challenger Series No. 1 Rio Waida (IDN), coming off back-to-back victories, and fellow Brazilian Peterson Crisanto (BRA).
“Rio (Waida) is the guy to beat this year and it was great to surf against him after he got me in Manly,” said Muniz. “I thought that was the hardest heat of the first round on paper. I’ve been here so many times and this was the biggest win of my career so far. I’ve been training a lot and when you believe in yourself and find the waves, it all works out.”
Also notching vital opening day wins, former CT elite Ezekiel Lau (HAW) and Willian Cardoso (BRA), Gatien Delahaye (FRA), Tristan Guilbaud (FRA), Mihimana Braye (PYF), and Keanu Kamiyama (JPN) all made their way into the Round of 64.
The next call will be made tomorrow, July 31 at 7:05 a.m. PDT for a possible 7:35 a.m. PDT start for men’s Round of 96 Heat 17.
The Vans US Open of Surfing begins July 30 – August 7 at Huntington Beach, California.
The broadcast will begin on Monday, August 1 at 7:30 a.m. PDT, and fans can watch LIVE on WorldSurfLeague.com, WSL’s YouTube channel, and the free WSL app. Check local listings for coverage from the WSL’s broadcast partners.
The Vans US Open of Surfing is proudly supported by Vans, Visit Huntington Beach, Red Bull, Flying Embers, Hydro Flask, Shiseido, 805, Pacifico, Sambazon, StillHouse, Youtheory, BF Goodrich, Fu Wax, Boxed Water, and Just Egg.