Peru Wins Billabong ISA World Surfing Games. US Places 6th.

| posted on October 28, 2010
The Peruvian team celebrates their Victory at the Billabong ISA World Surfing Games. Photo:La Torre

The Peruvian team celebrates their Victory at the Billabong ISA World Surfing Games. Photo:La Torre

After a week’s worth of highs and lows, closeout lefts and rippable rights, the 2010 Billabong ISA World Surfing Games in Peru came to a climactic finish at the 3-foot rights at Senoritas. With 31 teams competing at this year’s event, the sleepy surfside village was transformed into surfing’s version of Olympic City with as many languages being spoken as there were waves on tap for the contest. Throughout the week, flags were raised and anticipations swelled as the dream of taking a home a team gold took root in the minds of every surfer in the event. Remarkably, the overall gold medal didn’t have to travel very far as the Peruvians took the win at this year’s games by placing a surfer in each of the three finals. The Australians would come in second and the South Africans third and the Americans sixth.

On the individual level, with the surfers thinned down over the course of the last week, a veritable pantheon of current surfing giants and future stars proved to be razor sharp. Claiming the prestigious men’s shortboard gold, Tahiti’s Hira Teriinatoofa squeaked out a narrow win over Peruvian hometown hero Gabriel Villaran. Throughout the games, both Teriinatoofa and Villaran looked impeccable, but it was Teriinatoofa’s precision and strategy that proved golden. As they played the Tahitian anthem, Teriinatoofa shrouded himself in his flag, held his hand to his heart, and emotionally soaked in the glory of winning a gold medal.

For the women, Australian surfing superstar Chelsea Hedges dropped the highest-heat score of the final with a blistering performance on the rippable rights to the tune of a 17-point combined heat total. In second place stood New Zealand’s Paige Hareb and in third was Peruvian Sofia Mulanovich with France’s Pauline Ado rounding out the final.

A reflection of more than just progressive surfing, the ISA Games also included a longboarding division that was swept with the effortless poise and grace of Brazil’s Rodrigo Sphyer who took down Australians Josh Constable and Harley Ingleby and Peruvian Benoit Clemente.

Despite being last year’s champions, the American squad opened up the games on a tear but faltered in the last few days with the loss of frontline surfers like Ben Bourgeois and Mike Losness in the fourth round. Although there weren’t any Americans standing tall on the podium by event’s end, head coach Ian Cairns stated that this was a growing year for the team.

Although surfing may not be an Olympic Sport, at the end of the ISA Games, with the teams crowding the podium, some wearing medals, some not, all proud, all smiling, there was no denying that the Olympic spirit was alive and well in Peru—it just happened to be under a different name.

Gold: Peru
Silver: Australia
Bronze: South Africa
Copper: Brazil


Open Men
Gold: Hira Terinatoofa (TAH)
Silver: Gabriel Villarán (PER)
Bronze: Alan Jhones (BRA)
Copper: Mick Campbell(AUS)

Open Women
Gold: Chelsea Hedges (AUS)
Silver: Paige Hareb (NZ)
Bronze: Sofia Mulanovich (PER)
Copper: Pauline Ado (FRA)

Gold: Rodrigo Sphyer (BRA)
Silver: Josh Constable (AUS)
Bronze: Harley Ingleby (AUS)
Copper: Benoit Clemente (PER)

Final Nations Rankin
1. Peru
2. Australia
3. South Africa
4. Brazil
5. Tahiti
6. USA
7. France
8. New Zealand
9. Costa Rica
10. Spain
11. Venezuela
12. Puerto Rico
13. Chile
14. Argentina
15. Mexico
16. Great Britain
17. Panama
18. Japan
19.  Ecuador
20. Germany
21. Uruguay
22. Switzerland
23. Guatemala
24. Portugal
25. Canada
26. Sweden
27. Dominican Republic
28. Israel
29. Jamaica
30. Ireland
31. Barbados

Peru Takes Gold Medal at Billabong ISA World Surfing Games

Gabriel Villaran displaying top-notch surfing to earn victory. Photo: Marotta

Gabriel Villaran displaying top-notch surfing to earn second place.. Photo: Marotta

Open Women's Winner and World Tour surfer, Chelsea Hedges floating the oncoming section. Photo:

Open Women's Winner, Chelsea Hedges tearing the top-off an unfortunate wave. Photo: La Torre

San Clemente's own, Mike Losness surfed well in the early rounds but fell just short in Round 4. Photo:

San Clemente's, Mike Losness surfed well in the early rounds, but fell just short in Round 4. Photo: Marotta

Open Men's fourth place finisher, Mick Campbell showing off that powerful backhand. Photo:

Open Men's fourth place finisher, Mick Campbell showing off that powerful backhand. Photo: Marotta

Sofia Mulanovich heads out for her Round 4 heat, which she would later win. Photo:

Sofia Mulanovich heading out for her Round 4 heat. Photo: La Torre

Tahiti's Hira-Teriinatoofa powerful fronthand assualt earned victory in the Open Men's division. Photo:

It was Tahiti's, Hira Teriinatoofa's powerful fronthand assualt that earned victory in the Open Men's division. Photo: La Torre

Benoit Clemente going vertical on his Round 2 heat. Photo:

Fourth place finisher, Benoit Clemente going vertical in his Round 2 heat. Photo: Marotta

Down time at the Team Venezuala camp. Photo:

Downtime at the Venezuala camp. Photo: La Torre

USA's Kulia Doherty drawing her line. Photo:

USA's Kulia Doherty drawing her line. Photo: Lopez

Peru's next rising star, Cristobal de Col with a standard frontside double grab.

Peru's next rising star, Cristobal de Col with a standard frontside double grab. Photo: La Torre

  • VC

    “Veritable pantheon of … Surfing giants”? Haha, watch Iron Chef America much, Jeff?
    Felicidades Peru! Chimpu callao!

  • Jeff

    Ha.I’m a huge fan of the show.

  • Jean Carlos

    Good Job Peru, I wish I could have a house between that left and right break, it is so awesome. I also heard that Pico Alto is round the corner, Peru has a lot of quality waves.

  • igor

    First of all Congratulations to the Peruvian athletes and the peruvian surfing federation for their achievements
    How come nobody talks about the incidents during the finals were interferences were done “on purpose” to faccilitate other competitors,leashes were pulled in the water. Or the fact that the local crowd was screaming in a very aggressive manner to the Australian surfers,throwing beer bottles etc?. Also many surfers complained about a “not so impartial judging”.

  • cesar herrera

    Congratulations Peru, about the “interference” to the australian team mentioned before, it should be described as just one legal team strategy used in competitions of this nature. This is not a play dirty strategy. Besides, this strategy was suggested by one of the peruvian team coaches who is from Australia. Arriba el Peru!!!!!!

  • Dave

    Ceasar, Arriba el Peru? Firstly, can you possibly be serious?
    Your team did not win with any honor, diginity or pride, if you are Peruvian you should be ashamed and also apologetic for being part of a country who reversed any kind of progress in surfing..After the hard work people like Magoo Del Rosa have done to promote surfing in Peru, working so hard for so long to build….
    In 1 respect you are correct, it was a strategy yes implemented by the Peruvian team BUT, for Mattias Mulanovich to not surf a single wave the entire time and hassle Australian Team Surfer into being a position that he had to basically paddle over Mulanovich to even try and get a wave and then be abused is not competitive surfing, or surfing at all.
    Then what i witnessed can only be discribed as neanderthalic behaviour….Tean Manager for Volcom (Mulanovich’s sponsor by chance…..will have his name soon.) punched Australian Surfer Drew Courtney from BEHIND then with the aid of his wealthy apparently educated friends spat, threw what started as water, then beer bottles and by now the crowd had joined in with rocks more glass and then mob mentality took over, chasing Drew and Former World Champion Barton Lynch under the Judging scaffolding, this then disintergrated into locals in “QUIVER” Surfboard hats threataning to kill the Australian team in their accommodation to even lower standards of throwing water and spitting on Australian World Champion, Chelsea Hedges as she stood on the podium with her 2 YEAR OLD DAUGHTER…
    No security at any time went to their aid, not ISA President Fernando Agurre, not the Peruvian Team, no one.
    At no time did the commentary ask for assistance nor did they plea with the crowd to relax or even EXPLAIN the real situation.
    So, now where does this leave you and the still apparent “Sport of the Rich and spoilt” in your country?
    Exactly where you started, Maybe you should build more Waikiki Clubs where it costs $100,000 per year to be a member and people earning $10.00usd a week are forced to wear white gloves and wax your board and then carry it to the water for you…………..
    Question: Do you think these young Surfers understands “The Ripple Effect”? or do you think they may experience it in their travels soon from Trestles, California to Snapper Rocks, Gold Coast? By the looks of it they can afford bodyguards anyway…….
    So, find pride in that.

  • Felipe Bernales

    lack of security was an issue……ISA organizers suuuuuuuuuck!!!!

  • Harry


    you should really be careful with what you said, especially if you are not telling the truth, I was there at the beach, and I know the manager from Volcon and he did not hit him, that is pretty serious accusation, you should watch the tapes and you can tell that the team manager did not him him, you should also see what happen in the ocean, it was the australian who try to hit Matias in his own country and inf fron of his peopke does want not to smart, you boy provocate the people with his behavior, he also provocate the people by insulting them with hand sign, you guys you should learn to respect every country you guys go so if you guys don’t want this to happen again you need learn very soon to respect everybody especially the home team, and one more tips my friend you need to learn to loose, Peru work very hard for this and their truly champions and all you need to say it’s good job Peru and just be quiet and wait for next one……… take care my friend

  • Joe


    Aussies could not handle the fact that Peru won them in good surf. Australia’s team strategy of blocking a surfer with two team mates in the same heat, has been their wining move for many years. This year they did it again but something went wrong with it.
    Matias heat was cruissial for Australia and Peru. 2 aussies against 1 peruvian!!!. Aussies move was clear as water. Matias was smarter, He knew the blocking strategy against him so he block just one of them bearing down their goal. Thats team competition isn’t it? In both ways Yes. If you don’t like it, tell ISA to make a rule to avoid blocking in heats. I’m sure if that happens we will see new countries as world champs as this time.
    The beach incident was provocated by the Australian (Drew) lifting both middle fingers to the spactators. What would you expect as a reaction for that offence!!! Kisses? Aplausse? It’s a shame what he started and happened out of the water.
    Other fact was the “partialitty” from the judges in many heats. ISA head judge was Australian!!!
    So please accept the result and dont use this incident as an excuse for your loose. Next time send surfers with better behaivors and respect to the local crowd. First time in history that an small but strong third world country beat the Aussies.

    An era of new power surfing nations is On.

    Hope you learn the lesson.


  • mark

    You have got to be kidding Harry.The whole thing was provoked by the tactics used by the Peru team coach and carried out by the Peru surfer. Yes it very true what Dave said and I witnessed the whole thing.He is telling the truth with what he said.Peru might have won but it was an extremely hollow victory.They should and will be lots to come out of this especially with the World Juniors meant to be held in Peru next year. Would you take kids to a place where rocks and fists can be thrown at them. I don’t think so!!!!! Disgusting unsportsman like behavior from team Peru and then by the spectators. It should be known that the aggressor was the Peruvian surfer and not the Australian surfer involved!!!! Get your facts right Harry!!!!

  • yoel

    Back in the 70’s peruvian surfer hasto bleach blonde his hair for heats surfed in Autralia as a complaint for the bias-judging … … Greg Emslie got rob on a heat against two Australians…how come?….

  • mark

    Jo your head is so far up your arse you don’t know whats going on!!!! The peruvian surfer went out there to hassle and block and not catch a wave from the very start of the heat!!! Something that I have not seen in the 25 years I have been competing!!! Atleast he could of tried to get through the heat before resorting to blocking tactics but that was never going to happen. ISA HEAD JUDGE IS STH AFRICAN SO GET YOUR FACTS STRAIGHT!!!!! Oh we have learnt a lesson alright and thats not to take another team to Peru.Again they Peruvian team did win and congratulations to them and i know the Australian Team personally congratulated the Team Peru out of good sportsmanship but what a hollow victory to win it in the way they did. If they ever win it with just pure surfing which they won’t then they can say they are the best in the world.

  • Harry

    Keep Crying Mark!!!!

  • Juan Jose

    I have replied to these emails for the reason that the truth must be known, I was in the judging tower when all of the problems happen. Matthias from Peru was wrong so wrong he made no attempt to surf the heat. he went to Drew the aussie surfista and hassle him so he can not score any points and lose. This was the worst thing I have seen, it is a victory that Peru cannot be proud of. A crowd of people attacked drew with stones,bottles and fists this was not a competition to be proud of.The tactics of the peru surfer should be ashamed. I also know that the vice president of the ISA Karin was in the judges complaining and trying to get the interference on the Australiian by pushing the replay and making much noise. The aussie Head judge was the best I have seen worked with and does not deserve the shame that some people say. He was not even the main headjudge at this contest a sth afrikaan was. Most of you comments are from assholes that no nothing of the true story. KOOKS

  • Pancho

    i know long time has gonne by, but the real truth must be told. as in any competitive sport there are ways of messing around your opponent. For example: in soccer theres the out of zone, in racing theres the zig zaggin to slow down your rival, and so on.
    what happened between Mathias and Drew was an old strategy that i once saw Kelly Slater do on Shane Beschen during an OP pro at Huntington beach, only that Slater led Beschen into that interference, and thats how he won that heat.
    Honestly how the crowd handled the situation was really embarrassing. But there is an answer for that too. Most of them are people that are not familiar with competitive surfing, and they felt that the aussie was using dirty tricks. Lets get it straight, im not saying that im not ashamed of the attitude of the crowd, i dont agree with them in any way. But im Peruvian and i dont feel any remorse of the competitive tactics. the last thing for me to say is that it was a bad way of handling a tournament like that but not from any of the surfers involved in the competition, but from the management. All those surfers deserve the respect of profesional athlets, not the denomination of kooks.
    Peru welcomes everybody who want to surf our waves, jus give respect to get respect …. Hope i made my statement clear for you guys. Vibes and peace for all!