Photos: ASP/Cestari & Kirstin
Mick Fanning has won the Quiksilver Pro France over Gabriel Medina at the back up venue of Le Penon in Seignosse.
Stop number eight of 10 on the ASP World Championship Tour, the Quiksilver Pro France juggled with a difficult forecast to run in the best possible waves over the two iconic spots of La Graviere and Le Penon.
This was Mick's fourth win at the Quiksilver Pro France making him the most decorated surfer of the event's 12-year history. It also marked the first event win for Fanning this season and cements him in the pole position on the rankings.
"I'm pretty emotional, I never really got into rythmn until this morning so it feels great," an ecstatic Fanning stated. "It just feels so good, Gabi is such an incredible kid, even with 20 seconds to go I was still under pressure, it just feels so good."
Fanning consecutively outsurfed John John Florence and Joel Parkinson on his way to the final, where he found himself backed up against the wall with Medina in the lead. The two-time World Champion sticked to his game plan and attacked a bumpy righthander to steal the show with an 8.83.
Gabriel Medina former winner of the Quiksilver Pro France in 2011, had a difficult season so far amongst the Top 34 and nets in France his best result of 2013.
"I'm really happy I made the final with Mick, it's been a good week with a great result in the end," Medina said. "I'm stoked, another final and now I'm off to Portugal and hopefully I can do good there again."
Off to a great start in the final, Medina chose his waves wisely and lofted several airs to score an excellent heat total of 15.00 in the first few minutes. He unfortunately couldn't stave off an inspired recovery from Fanning who turned the situation around with a combination of three powerful turns on a long running righthander.
Earlier in the semi-finals it was the classic Cooly kids head to head, but Joel Parkinson fell short of finding the high score he needed to hinder Fanning's road to victory. Parkinson places equal third and stays in striking distance of the World Title.
"It was just a let down I guess, I missed one wave, one opportunity." Parkinson admitted. "I could have been a little more patient but I guess it gives Mick another boost now and puts pressure on everyone else in the race, I'll have to do the math now."
Want to watch all the heats on demand? Click here: http://quiksilverlive.com/profrance/2013
QUIKSILVER PRO FRANCE FINAL RESULTS:
1- Mick Fanning (AUS) 16.66
2- Gabriel Medina (BRA) 15.00
QUIKSILVER PRO FRANCE SEMI-FINAL RESULTS:
SF1: Mick Fanning (AUS) 16.10 def. Joel Parkinson (AUS) 15.03
SF2: Gabriel Medina (BRA) 17.87 def. Filipe Toledo (BRA) 12.93
QUIKSILVER PRO FRANCE QUARTER-FINAL RESULTS:
QF1: Joel Parkinson (AUS) 15.77 def. Kai Otton (AUS) 13.60
QF2: Mick Fanning (AUS) 17.00 def. John John Florence (HAW) 13.77
QF3: Filipe Toledo (BRA) 16.37 def. Kelly Slater (USA) 11.40
QF4: Gabriel Medina (BRA) 15.70 def. Julian Wilson (AUS) 12.00