Newport Beach, Calif. Melanie Bartels and Nathaniel Curren represented team O’Neill in a huge way with their respective wins at the OP Classic held at 56th Street, Newport Beach. Fellow O’Neill teamriders Kyla Langen and Brett Simpson delivered dominant performances to place 2nd behind their teammates.
“It’s great to see Nathaniel, Brett, Melanie and Kyla doing so well on the WQS, said O’Neill Sports Marketing Director Garth Tarlow. “All of these athletes come from O’Neill’s homegrown amateur team added Tarlow.
The event was held in unbelievable conditions with 6-8 foot hurricane surf being served up for the competitors the first two days, and smaller, but equally rippable surf for the finals on Sunday.
The men’s final offered an opportunity for both Nathaniel and Brett to inch closer to the WCT (World Championship Tour). Nathaniel walked away with the trophy and $5,000.00. Brett was solid and earned $2,500.00 finishing 2nd.
The big story was Melanie Bartels qualifying for the WCT with the victory. In typical Melanie fashion, she let it come down to the wire making everyone a bit nervous with her needing to win to re-qualify. She needed a first or second place showing at the Op Newport Classic to secure enough points to remain on the world tour. This was a huge accomplishment being Melanie has been sidelined for 5 weeks with a broken wrist. Runner up Kyla Langen rounded out the team O’Neill conquest with a great surge in the final by grabbing a nice set wave and posting a 7.00 and a 5.40.
The O’Neill amateur team stepped up with the high school division win going to O’Neill teamrider Kaliegh Gilchistwith. She used her local knowledge to her benefit by putting her self in the best position and catching some great waves and ripping them! Fellow O’Neill amateur teamrider Joshua Giddings also made a showing in the final with a fourth place finish in the elementary school division.
O’Neill is the world’s original surf brand. The family-owned and operated company distributes its products to 85 countries, including more than 2,000 specialty wetsuit and clothing retailers in the U.S. O’Neill Clothing USA is a licensee of O’Neill International. For more information log on to oneill.com