NORTH NARRABEEN, New South Wales/Australia (Tuesday, January 11, 2011) – South African dark-horse Bianca Buitendag (ZAF), 17, won the Billabong ASP Women’s World Junior Championships today in a hard-fought final over French talent Justine Dupont (FRA), 19, in two-to-four foot (1 metre) waves at North Narrabeen while Alizee Arnaud (FRA), 20, clinched the overall ASP Women’s World Junior Title with her equal 3rd place result in the event.
The Billabong ASP Women’s World Junior Championships is the second and final stop on the inaugural ASP Women’s World Junior Tour, with the first event unfolding at the Oakley ASP World Pro Junior in Bali.
Buitendag quietly navigated her way through the early rounds of competition, tearing into several North Narrabeen lefthanders to eventually see the South African goofy-footer eliminate Arnaud in the Semifinals before topping Dupont in the Final to mark the biggest result of the rising star’s career.
“I’m very happy,” Buitendag said. “I don’t know how to explain it. I really wasn’t expecting this. I’m really happy about it and it’s the best result of my life. I’m stoked. My Dad has been supporting me since I was little, sitting on the beach and without him nothing would be possible, so thanks to him.”
Arnaud, who clinched the ASP Women’s World Junior title due to her combined performance in both ASP World Junior Tour events over the 2010 season, was elated to earn the prestigious title despite being eliminated in the Semifinals.
“I’m so happy,” Arnaud said. “This is what I’ve wanted since the beginning. Since I was 10 years old I’ve wanted to be World Champion and to do it in my last event as a Junior, what a feeling.”
Arnaud, who marched to an impressive runner-up finish to Tyler Wright (AUS), 16, at the Oakley ASP World Pro Junior in Bali, proved to be the most consistent surfer on the inaugural ASP World Junior Tour, notching an equal 3rd place finish at the Billabong ASP World Junior Championships in Narrabeen, earning her the 2010 ASP Women’s World Junior Champion title in her last year of eligibility on the series.
“Entering Bali, I was sure I could get a result because those are the waves I like,” Arnaud said. “I knew it was going to be hard coming here to Narrabeen, because I don’t usually do well in these conditions. This is my best result ever in Narrabeen, so to get my best result now, I’m just so happy.”
Dupont was also in razor-sharp form throughout the entirety of the Billabong ASP Women’s World Junior Championships, eventually eliminating defending event champion and local favorite Laura Enever (AUS), 19, in the Semifinals to guarantee Arnaud’s title, but couldn’t find the scores needed to surpass Buitendag in their Final matchup and finished in 2nd place.
“Alizee (Arnaud) won because I won against Laura (Enever),” Dupont said. “I’m so happy to have won in the Semifinals because Laura (Enever) is such a good competitor and she won here last year. I’m so happy for my friend (Alizee Arnaud). I told Alizee ‘you’re welcome’ after that heat.”
The Billabong ASP World Junior Championships holds a waiting period from January 8 through 16, 2011 and is webcast LIVE via http://www.billabongpro.com.
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The Billabong ASP World junior Championships fuelled by Monster Energy is made possible with the support of Sony, Volkswagon, VonZipper, Nixon, Australia’s Surfing Life Magazine, Warringah Council and NSW Sport and Recreation.
Billabong ASP Women’s World Junior Championships Final Results:
1 – Bianca Buitendag (ZAF) 10.00
2 – Justine Dupont (FRA) 9.00
Billabong ASP Women’s World Junior Championships Semifinals Results:
SF 1: Justine Dupont (FRA) 11.27 def. Laura Enever (AUS) 8.70
SF 2: Bianca Buitendag (ZAF) 8.37 def. Alizee Arnaud (FRA) 7.56
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About ASP: The Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) is the recognized world governing body of professional surfing and has been crowning surfing’s undisputed World Champions since 1976. The ASP sanctions and crowns World Champions for the following tours: the ASP World Tour, the ASP Women’s World Tour, ASP World Junior Tour, ASP World Longboard and Masters Championships. The ASP is dedicated to showcasing the world’s best surfing talent in a variety of progressive formats and has revolutionized the way the world watches surfing via their webcasts and other media platforms. The organization is divided into seven different regions: Africa, Japan, Australasia, Europe, Hawaii, North America, and South America.