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Girls Go Big at The Rockstar Games Pipeline Pro
Mark Fordham, 14/01/07

12th January 2007, 12 noon, Pipeline Hawaii

Freitas Victorious at Pipeline while Taylor is Crowned IBA World Champion at the Pipeline Rockstar Games Presented by the Water Channel in association with Body Glove Bodyboards

By Lilly Pollard

Screams of excitement explode from delighted spectators mouths as a tiny Brazilian lady on a bodyboard paddles late into a maxing 10ft Pipeline beast. She falls top to bottom, dropping head first into the barrel, and gets annihilated by the wave. Everyone fears for her life. Water patrol race in to pick her up and the crowd cheers as she is dropped on the beach. She is safe. Leila Alli smiles, thanks the patrol, hobbles down the beach a bit, and paddles back out for more.History was made for women’s bodyboarding on this day, as the biggest waves ever seen for a women’s contest were ridden. On a rising WNW swell, the controversial decision was made to send the women out first. Carnage galore ensued as the girls gave it their all in the massive swell.

With most of the sets shutting down on the end section, good wave selection was critical. Kira Llewellyn looked the most comfortable in the maxing conditions, confidently paddling into the biggest sets, scoring some good barrel rides, and posting a 8.67 for an invert off a closeout in her quarter.

A few memorable moments during the day included Jenn Marr’s drop into a bomb that threw her onto the rock bottom, LuzMarie’s ballsy roll at Backdoor, Jessica Becker’s 8 point roll, Aoi Koike’s intelligent wave selection and powerful rolls, and 17 yr old Isabella Souza surfing at a level way beyond her years.

The craziest performance of the day was definitely from Leila Alli. On her first wave in her first heat Leila copped a lip to the back of her leg, tearing her knee out of the socket. Undeterred, Leila went on to do a big roll on her next wave and win the heat.

Afterwards, she could barely walk, but instead of giving up, Leila sucked down some painkillers and headed back out. She went on to score the biggest wipeout of the day, and also some of the best waves, forging her way to a well earned spot in the final.

2003 World Champ Neymara Carvalho busted a sick invert in her Round 2 heat, and a nice deep barrel, but was surprisingly eliminated in the quarters, along with 6x world champion Stephanie Petterson, and world title contender Eunate Aguirre, who was actually blown off her board by the spit in quarter final 2 -breaking her leash and sending her board flying. Eunate had to chase her board down to Pupukea, losing too much time to recover in her heat.

After the quarter finals, Marina Taylor’s World Title was secured. Marina was clearly happy and relieved to have her first world title under her belt, and with the powerful and spectacular surfing she produces, I’m sure it won’t be her last.

By the end of the day consistent second reef sets were storming the line-up, cleaning up girls, boards and everything in between. Isabella Souza’s board actually snapped in half under the pressure of the 10ft wash throughs during her semi.

The onslaught of second reef sets continued into the final, creating a hectic paddle out for the 4 finalists: Kira Llewellyn, Aoi Koike, Leila Alli and Daniela Freitas. These girls are Pipeline regulars and it was no surprise to see any of them in the final at huge Pipe.

The final was sketchy. With the consistent crazy sets washing out the line-up, the girls struggled to find good waves. Kira scored some bombs. Aoi managed a few rides. Leila got a set on the head and washed down to Ehukai and made it back out with not enough time to catch a wave. The girls spent most of their time duck diving.

Meanwhile, Daniela Freitas was a girl on a mission.. Winning every heat on her way to the final, dominating with her strong rolls, and smooth, clean style. Her form continued into the final, where her wise wave selection came into play. Dani completed the only manoeuvre of the final, a roll, to take victory.

Dani: “Really, it was too big for us girls. I’m just so relieved no-one was hurt”

Final results:

1st: Daniela Freitas
2nd: Kira Llewellyn
3rd: Aoi Koike
4th: Leila Alli


Hopefully we can do it all again next year!! Woo! And of course, congratulations to Dani and Marina!!!!!

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