Carissa Moore Beachley © ASP/ Will H-S

Carissa Moore is back on top of the ASP World Tour standings after defeating Red Bull teammate Sofia Mulanovich in the final of the Commonwealth Bank Beachley Classic.

Moore, the 18-year-old Hawaiian, has returned to the podium’s highest block after winning the richest event on the ASP Women’s World Tour at Dee Why Point in Sydney, Australia. Carissa claimed her second win this season, pocketing a cool $40,000 along the way.

“I’m really, really happy," said Moore. "I’ve been fired up ever since the last two events with Sally (Fitzgibbons) and I’m just super excited I was able to come out on top this time.”

“Carissa is an amazing surfer and she’s really hard to beat." -Sofia

On a day when wave selection proved critical to success, Moore clawed her way back into the lead in the dying minutes of the final, posting 6.83 and 8.33 (out of 10) scores to defeat Mulanovich by 15.60 to 14.60.

“I was really excited to make another final and it was refreshing to have Sofia as an opponent,” Moore continued. “She was leading for most of the heat and I was kind of nervous out there.”

Moore’s victory gives her a healthy 3,350-point lead in the overall standings ahead of closest rival Fitzgibbons, and makes her the surfer to beat with just three events remaining.

“I’m trying to not think about the World Title too much." Moore said. "I know that there are a lot of girls within range, so I’m just going to keep my head down and have fun.”

null Andy Green/Red Bull Content Pool

Sofia Returns to the Podium

Mulanovich (pictured above) found unique form to reach her first final this year, eliminating Fitzgibbons in their dramatic semifinal clash before placing runner-up to Moore in the final.

“I haven’t been on the podium for a while and I’m just stoked to be here, it feels amazing,” said Mulanovich. “Carissa is an amazing surfer and she’s really hard to beat, although I was beating her for a while out there - I surprised myself.”

Fitzgibbons suffered a shock elimination during the semifinals, blaming poor wave selection for her downfall against Mulanovich that cost her her final berth as well as the ASP World No. 1 spot, which she had overtaken with her second win of the season last week in New Zealand.

“I can’t be disappointed with a third place but I think the waves weren’t in my favor; I just didn’t quite find my rhythm,” Fitzgibbons said. “Some days you have it like in Bells and New Zealand and some days you don’t. Today I just wasn’t quite there.”

Fitzgibbons’ equal third result marks her second such finish of the season, adding to an impressive tally including two wins, but sees her drop one position on the ASP World Title rankings.

“The World Title is something you’re always reaching for and I feel like I still have a lot to give,” Fitzgibbons continued. “World No. 2 is a good place to be, so I’m just going to hold my head up high and hope to get that rhythm back at the next few events and hopefully snatch a few more wins along the way.”

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