Kika Veselko won, this Friday, the world junior title of the World Surf League, on a historic day for national women’s surfing. The young Portuguese surfer, aged 19, won the final day in San Diego, California, to become the first Portuguese surfer to reach the maximum title in the junior category.
An emotional final day that put Kika Veselko in action against some of the most talented young surfers in the world. It all started with a solid triumph in the quarter-finals against the Canadian Erin Brooks, followed by a more balanced duel against the Australian Sierra Kerr, which was decided in the final stretch, with Kika’s experience making the difference in the outcome. of the second semi-final.
After eliminating two of the youngest promising surfers in the world, the 2021 national champion faced North American Sawyer Lindblad in the final. Despite the fact that her opponent was competing “at home”, Kika also had some local experience in her favor, as she has already spent several seasons in California, where her father is from.
The decisive heat started with balance, then there was a rise for Lindblad. It was in the last third of the heat that Kika caught the wave that would make all the difference. With 7 points, the Portuguese surfer managed to reverse the score and secure the triumph with a total score of 12.47 against 12.33 of the North American.
After the title won by Vasco Ribeiro in 2014, in Ericeira, Kika repeats another triumph for national surfing at the WSL Junior World Championship. A victory that left the young Linha surfer very emotional and in tears right after leaving the water.
“I want to thank you for the invitation and the opportunity given to me. She had a special feeling since the start of the championship and thought that everything was going to be fine. He was confident throughout the championship. In the final, I fell in the first wave, but I got back out and continued to fight. And I did! I want to thank my family, my sponsors, and my coach, Rodrigo Sousa”, stressed Kika in the flash interview, before letting the emotion take over the moment.
In addition to the world title in the category, Kika Veselko, who arrived at this event as one of the wildcards, automatically qualified for the Challenger Series 2023.
After a two-year break, due to the pandemic, the WSL Junior World Cup returned to the water this year and soon with a Portuguese triumph. Kika Veselko thus surpassed Teresa Bonvalot’s record in this competition, who in the 2015 World Cup, in Ericeira, had achieved the 3rd final position.