Cristobal de Col took first place over the weekend at the 2011 Quiksilver ISA World Junior Surfing Championships at Punta Hermosa, Peru. The 17-year old Peruvian was the standout throughout the 18-and-under contest.
Competitive success is not new to de Col, who claimed his first international title in 2006 as the World Champion of the under-14 division at the Rip Curl Grom Search in Bali, Indonesia. But ISA competitions have been challenging. "A solid result at an ISA event has been an elusive one for Cristobal," said Chad Wells, Quiksilver's Surf Program Manager. De Col had a "power talk" one night with 1989 ASP Champion Martin Potter that Wells believes "was a huge motivator in his success."
Perhaps more importantly, de Col's individual victory sealed the contest win for the Peruvian squad. De Col posted two of the ten highest single wave scores (9.0 in heat 19, Round 1 and 8.0 in heat 6, Round 3), and his 15.83 point total in heat 19 of the first round was the best single heat score of the tournament.
Winning the last five Junior Championships in a row -- and six of nine since 2003 -- Australia's dominance has been difficult to stop. Team Peru entered the final day of the 2011 contest in fifth place. By day's end, Peru had earned gold medals for a second consecutive ISA event.
"We showed amazing teamwork in the last few days," de Col said in a statement released by the International Surfing Association. The team was victorious at the 2010 Billabong ISA World Surfing Games in late October -- also held at Punta Hermosa.
The final rounds of the Championships were held in 8- to 10-foot surf at nearby Caballeros. Joining de Col on the winner's podium were Filipe Toledo from Brazil, who won the Boys Under 16 division, and France's Canelle Bulard -- in her final year as a Junior -- taking the Girls Under 18 group.
South Africa, Australia, Hawaii, and the United States rounded out the top five in the final standings of the 27-team field, which weren't announced until the closing ceremony.
Up next on the ISA calendar is the ISA World Surfing Games in Panama from June 25 through July 3.