Carlos Muñoz Made Costa Rican Surf Dream in Hawaii
• Costa Rican surfer was awarded the "Todd Chesser Hard Charger Sportsmanship Award".
After a perfect score of 10 for conquering a 3-meter high wave and the feat of being the first Costa Rican to be classified in an official international competition, Carlos Muñoz made history in Hawaii when defeating the favorite, Hawaiian Kalani Chapman, and being awarded the "Todd Chesser Hard Charger Sportsmanship Award".
His sporting conditions and his great moment in competition was evident for all viewers of "Volcom Pipeline,” which took place last February in Banzai Pipeline, North Shore, Hawaii.
Despite his hard work, "Cali" did not win the tournament title; however, he got to the quarterfinals as the only Latin American in this round. He was placed ninth in the event and, according to the Costa Rican Association of Surfing, he created two of the best combinations with the maximum score, which were registered among the top four with this score in the event.
According to the Costa Rican Association of Surfing, "This is unbelievable. This is the best day of my life and I just want to share with you guys this award and my happiness. Thank you very much to everyone who helped me to get where I am" were the tico’s words during the award ceremony.
During the last series Muñoz ran, he won the highest-scored wave of the heat with a 7.27. Unfortunately, he could not repeat the deed and that put him at a disadvantage. His opponent, Jonathan Gonzalez (USA), outstripped him in the last minute and, therefore, Muñoz had to leave the competition.
Nathan Yeomans won the heat with a score of 13.27, followed by Gonzalez (11.50). Muñoz was placed third with 11.50 and fourth place was for Hawaiian Kalani Chapman (4.77).
From round 96 to the 16th (his last), the national surfer had the highest wave of the heat, so weighing for Costa Rica to win the prestigious award.
Muñoz surfed another wave with a very good score of 9.00 points. That made him win a series in which he defeated Hawaiian John Florence, champion of the event.
Carlos moved up four rounds (out of seven) in the Volcom Pipe Pro. He surfed five waves that were qualified as excellent; he scored 633 points for the ASP ranking classification – out of 2,000 possible. He won $3,500, plus a distinguished award from this event that has been celebrated for three consecutive years.
The national surfer faced the best in the world and earned high scores against rivals from Hawaii, Brazil, and South Africa.
According to the Costa Rican Association of Surfing, Muñoz told the commentators of the event’s live broadcast: "I feel like crying. This is my dream."
The most difficult opponent he faced was the Hawaiian legend Kalani Chapman, one of the favorites.
As reported by the Costa Rican Association of Surfing, Munoz said: "I cannot believe it. I beat Kalani (Chapman), too. While in the water, he told me: "Go! Go! Run that wave!" I jumped on that and I just want to thank him for motivating me to run it."
Chris Cote, member of the international press and editor of Transworld Surf, one of the most important magazines in the world, said to 'Cali' during the interview: "You have public and competitors cheering for you in your heats and in that great wave! You almost fell, but you recovered for another great score in this competition."
"Cali, you did a great new list of fans, including myself. I cannot wait to see you surfing on your next heat," said Cote.