C.J. Hobgood leading the way for Team America, f–k yeah! Photo: A.J. Neste/Surfing America
Costa da Caparica, Portugal: 10/16/08 — C.J. Hobgood led the American charge on Day Five of the International Surfing Association (ISA) World Surfing Games. Hobgood, an ASP World Tour veteran, used his competitive savvy to claim victory in his Round Five heat by posting a nine-point ride.
With drastic tide swings and onshore winds, every heat had it's own personality as the PacSun USA Surf Team saw plenty of ups and downs. Hobgood, Womens competitor Lauren Sweeney, and longboarder Taylor Jensen are the only Americans still in the qualifying rounds of the double elimination event. These three surfers sit just two heats away from earning International Olympic Committee-recognized medals in the grand finals.
American Dillon Perillo lost a close one, but is still alive for the do-or-die loser’s round. Photo: A.J. Neste/Surfing America
Team USA's other ASP World Tour surfer, Ben Bourgeois, fell victim to the ever-changing conditions. Bourgeois was relegated to the repercharge after a third place finish. Dillon Perillo also lost in a close one but both surfers are still well alive but will have to grind it out in the do-or-die loser's rounds.
On the Mens Bodyboard side, both U.S. riders were eliminated with Jeremy Wright finishing 31st and Jacob Romero finishing 16th. However, Keila Grozden pressed on in Womens Bodyboard and is currently in the top 10 going into Friday.
USA’s Demi Boelsterli. Photo: A.J. Neste/Surfing America
Friday holds plenty of last chance repercharge rounds so the team standings will surely get shaken up by day's end. Currently, the USA is neck and neck with Australia and Brazil but with three days of competition left, anything can happen.
C.J. Hobgood. Photo: A.J. Neste/Surfing America