LA SAUZAIE, France - Cannelle Bulard (REU) won the ASP Grade-1 Breti’ Girls Pro Junior today at the famous reef break of La Sauzaie in the town of Bretignolles-Sur-Mer, France. Bulard, who finished atop a four-woman final to claim the 2010 ASP European Women’s Junior season opener, was the best throughout a short nonetheless intense day of competition grabbing the regional ratings’ lead.
Bulard, who had to battle on her backhand in the small waves on offer, stepped-up to take the lead early in the 35-minute decider thanks to the two best waves of the final battle.
“I am really super happy to win that first event of the year,” Bulard said. “It was hard to compete today and especially in the final. I didn’t want to paddle out because it was really small but I found those two waves and to win it is just great.”
After several months of break and training in Australia and in the Southern Hemisphere for many, Europe’s up-and-coming Under-21 ASP Europe female athletes gathered this morning to get their 2010 campaign, the Reunion Island resident securing a brilliant start before the summer leg resumes in July.
“It is a busy year for me as I will be starting competing on the ASP Women’s Star Series as well,” Bulard said. “With all Pro Junior events and Star events already planned ahead, I know it will be hard to win the regional title but this is what I am aiming at right now. I came all the way from Reunion Island for this event and I am no worried of how I am going to go back because there’s plenty of swell there.”
Making her way through tricky two-foot (0.5 meter) waves and difficult heat tactics where wave choice and positioning were her key to a big result, Lacanau resident Justine Dupont (Lacanau, FRA), 18, left the water satisfied with her run getting a runner-up finish to launch her 2010 ASP European Junior season.
“You always want to win when you make a final but it was really hard out there,” Dupont said. “Cannelle (Bulard) got the two best waves of the heat and there wasn’t much left for us after that. It’s good to get things going with a runner-up finish here at La Sauzaie and we’ll see how things go when the tour gets back in motion in July.”
It was the first time that female professional surfers took to the water at La Sauzaie today, the Protest Vendee Pro hosting the first ever women’s contest. With a clear intention to see the women’s event grow and be back in La Sauzaie next year, Bretignolles’ City Hall officials were able to hand the crown to the champion in front of a cheering crowd.
“It’s been five years now and we always wanted to see a women’s event take place here,” Contest director Julien Hamel said. “We are already thinking of increasing the number of stars for next year and it’s great to see women’s surfing take place on the wave of La Sauzaie.”
The waiting period of the ASP 4-Star Protest Vendee Pro starts Wednesday, April 21, 2010 so stay tuned for all updates as ASP’s Star Series athletes are on their way to La Sauzaie. Good waves are on the way for the men’s event and all action will be webcast LIVE.
1st, Cannelle Bulard (REU) 10.50
2nd, Justine Dupont (FRA) 7.27
3rd, Alizee Arnaud (FRA) 5.67
4th, Ainara Aymat (EUK) 3.90