Aussie golden girl Sally Fitzgibbons has broken her 2014 victory drought by claiming the ASP Billabong Pro in Rio. In the final Sal defeated tour leader Carissa Moore, and moves to 2nd position on the ratings. Sal now has 3 wins in Brazil, and is clearly comfortable in the shifting beach break conditions.
This year Fitzgibbons has been alternating between the FCS II Essential Series fins and Julian Wilson’s signature JW template. In Brazil Sal opted to ride Julian’s fin, which is designed specifically for fast, dynamic turns in small to medium size waves, and features a smaller centre fin for quick tail release.
Fellow FCS teammate Kolohe Andino was another standout performer in Rio, making his first podium finish since joining the tour. In the men’s final Kolohe was defeated by an in-form Michel Bourez.
Kolohe silenced his critics by producing an impressive combination of exciting surfing and a savvy competitive spirit from his opening heat. Riding his new signature FCS II KA template, Kolohe took down two of his heroes by finding some grinding barrels and repeatedly nailing his trademark air reverse.
FCS worked closely with Kolohe during the development of his signature FCS II KA template, which has been designed to enhance the fast and explosive characteristics of Andino’s surfing.
At last count 9 of the top 16 men, and 9 of the top 15 women were actively riding the new FCS II system. Having only been on the market for a short time, the new system has already won a Red Dot Design Award and two SIMA awards for Hardgoods Accessory Product of the Year.