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News provided by ASP World Tour on 8 July 2006

BIARRITZ, France - American Schuyler McFerran (Encinitas, California) has won the Roxy ASP Women’s World Longboarding Championship presented by Evian after surfing from the first round and winning every one of the eight heats she contested.

McFerran, 19, defeated fellow Californian Jennifer Smith (Pacific Beach) in the final which was held in clean, three foot (one metre waves) at Côte des Basques, Biarritz, France.

McFerran’s win has cemented her spot in the history books as the first-ever ASP Women's World Longboard Champion. She won the US$4,500 first place prize in the US$30,000 event.

“I’m so thankful and stoked, happy and relieved – there’s just so many emotions. I’ve surfed so many heats that it’s just overwhelming, then to have all of my friends out here screaming and cheering for me, I just broke down,” an ecstatic McFerran said.

“I knew that I could win this event if I really put my heart into it and I gave my very best effort every heat. To be able to have my mom here supporting and coaching me and to have my family and boyfriend at home rooting for me, it was just so incredible.”

McFerran notched up more time on the nose during the inaugural Roxy ASP WWLC than any other competitor in the 67-woman field and was rewarded handsomely for it. A long stint on the nose during the final earned her a 9.25 score (out of 10) and a commanding heat lead.

“I love noseriding and I think that it’s a huge part of longboarding. That’s one of the main things – you need to be able to noseride well because that’s what sets longboarding apart from shortboarding. I knew the judges were rewarding really good, clean noseriding so I wanted to go out there and get the longest possible noseride I could get and hang ten so I was super stoked with that 9.25,” McFerran said.

Jennifer Smith, 20, finished runner-up to McFerran. Smith defeated event-standout Bianca Valenti (Isla Vista, Calif.) in the semis but was no match for a redhot McFerran in the final.

“It was a good match-up but Schuyler definitely dominated the whole heat,” Smith said. “I’m glad that I was able to get the right waves in my quarter and semifinal heats to make it to the final. Just making the final is a huge accomplishment and coming second to Schuyler is nothing to be ashamed of.”

Despite displaying strong performances thoroughout the event, Valenti, 21, ran out of steam in her semifinal heat against Smith.

“The waves were a lot faster and steeper than earlier and I should have worn a leash because I lost my board twice and ran out of energy a little bit swimming for it. It’s fine, I obviously wanted to win but what can you do, I’m having a good time,” Valenti said.

Also finishing equal third was Biarritz local Claire Karabatsos (FRA) who lost to the eventual winner in the semis. Karabatsos, 28, sat in second for most of their semifinal heat, but caught a wave toward the end which put her in first for a few moments as the heat wound down. McFerran answered back shortly thereafter with a good ride to clinch the win.

“Yeah, it was close there at the end,” Karabatsos said. “She surfed really, really well and had good noserides. I was in second place, then I got a good wave and I went into first and was like ‘Whoa, whoa!” really happy, but then she caught another wave and was first again.”

Finishing equal fifth after being eliminated in the quarterfinals were Australians Belinda Baggs (Newcastle, NSW) and Deanne Ashmore (Maroochydore, Queensland) and Americans Kassia Meador (Malibu, Calif.) and Kaitlin Maguire (Del Mar, Calif.)

The marketing director for Roxy Europe, Maritxu Darrigrand, was pleased with the turnout and the outcome for the inaugural Roxy ASP WWLC.

“We had the best longboarders in the world and the level of competition has been great,” Darrigrand said. “Roxy sponsored the first stand-alone ASP Women’s World Tour shortboard event in Fiji, so to support this first-ever ASP-sanctioned longboard world championship is another milestone for us.”

FINAL RESULTS (1st earns US$4,500, 2nd earns US$2,300)
FINAL: Schuyler McFerran (USA) 15.50 def. Jennifer Smith (USA) 9.85

SEMIFINAL RESULTS (1st advances to FINAL; 2nd = 3rd place)
HEAT 1: Jennifer Smith (USA) 16.40 def. Bianca Valenti (USA) 13.15
HEAT 2: Schuyler McFerran (USA) 14.50 def. Claire Karabatsos (FRA) 14.25

QUARTERFINAL RESULTS (1st advances to SEMIFINAL; 2nd = 5th place)
HEAT 1: Bianca Valenti (USA) 15.25 def. Belinda Baggs (AUS) 12.75
HEAT 2: Jennifer Smith (USA) 11.00 def. Deanne Ashmore (AUS) 7.70
HEAT 3: Schuyler McFerran (USA) 16.10 def. Kassia Meador (USA) 14.75
HEAT 4: Claire Karabatsos (FRA) 11.25 def. Kaitlin Maguire (USA) 8.25

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