Taylor Jensen Claims 2011 WLT Title At ASP Bear Pro In Italy
After the results were announced, Taylor Jensen was carried up the beach by his fellow competitors to celebrate his first WLT title. The natural footer had been displayed the full array of his longboarding skills at the 2011 ASP Bear Pro in Italy.
Competition for the 2011 Bear Pro was held at the back up site of Andora, 180km northwest of the main event site in Levanto.
Despite his loss at the event, Taylor Jensen’s runner up finish was enough to earn the talented Californian his maiden ASP WLT World title.
“I haven’t got it all in yet but I will feel pretty good tonight for sure,” began Jensen. “I was stressed out. I’ve been stressed out all week. In the last couple of minutes Silvagni needed a 9 and the conditions were tough. Kai (Sallas) got a 9.5 in the heat before but it is very hard to get one. As long as I didn’t let him (Silvagni) get a good wave I was okay."
Jensen was aware of the importance of his title win on Italian soil and made special mention of the town of Levanto and to the many victims of recent flooding which had devastated the area prior to the event starting.
“To be the first World champ crowned in Italy is amazing," said Jensen. "It is really special to have the celebration in Levanto after all they have been through."
Kai Sallas claimed his second ASP WLT victory with the Bear Pro win and finished 2nd on the 2011 WLT rankings with a convincing performance over newly crowned WLT champion Taylor Jensen.
Refocusing on the event victory when his World title hopes were dashed after the semi-finals, Sallas showed his superiority with an amazing display of technical nose rides and high speed turns in the small conditions.
“I had a slight chance to win the title if Taylor didn’t make it," explained Kai Sallas. "I lost that opportunity right before the final so I had to shake it off and just focus on the heat. It is the second WLT event I have won in my career and still no title, (laughs) but I’ll keep trying.”
Tony Silvagni placed equal 3rd in Italy to claim his best result on the ASP WLT with an incredible quarterfinal bout taking down 2009 ASP WLT champion Harley Ingleby.
“Taylor is an incredible surfer and he deserves this World title," said Silvagni. "For the past year- and-a-half he has been winning almost every single contest you can imagine. I’ve surfed against him many times and I win a few but he’s gotten me on the overhand. I am really happy for him and I wish him the best for the years to come.”
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Gabriel Medina, who joined the ASP Top 34 after the midyear rotation, fought his way to the top at the 2011 Rip Curl Pro Search San Francisco. The young Brazilian has won two events of the four in which he has competed as an official member of the 2011 roster.
With Gabriel Medina as his role model, Kolohe Andino trumped his competition at the 2011 Kangaroo Island Pro and dreams of making it to the ASP World Title Series.