Each year the Surf de Nuit Anglet (night surf) dazzles the French coastline. This year, the event was held at Chambre d'Amour in front of a crowd of 25,000 plus people. The format? Six teams compete for wildcards into the Anglet Pro. The winners get three slots into the Euro QS event.
This year, Team Sooruz edged the win ahead of Quiksilver and Roxy in second place, Rip Curl in third, followed by Volcom, Hurley and Picture.
The six surfers opening the show were freshly crowned Caraïbos Lacanau Pro Champ' Ramzi Boukhiam, Kyllian Guerin, Charly Quivront, Thomas Debierre, Lorenzo Dubois, and Sam Piter. Debierre had the lead for a while for Team Soöruz with a good backside air reverse and he even found a good little tube to post two high 6s. But Team Rip Curl's Guerin came back with a massive forehand rotation, his tail well above the lip and perfectly landed for an excellent 8.43, the highest single number of Heat 1, taking pole position.
Boukhiam, Quivront, Dubois and Piter all fought back, with power turns for the Moroccan and aerial antics for the other three. When the dust settled, the 2017 winning Team Rip Curl took the first 6 points in Heat 1 and confirmed their domination on night surfing in Anglet.
"There were so many people on and around the beach it really felt like stepping into a stadium and I really wanted to give it all!" Guerin said. "I was the rookie in my team so I wanted to do the best I could and I'm stoked I could bring the win home for the team."
The women's heat featuring Juliette Lacome, Pauline Ado, Carol Henrique, Maud Le Car, Tessa Thyssenand legendary French surfer Emmanuelle Joly took to the lineup.
Caribbean surfers Thyssen and Le Car battled for the lead in the first half of the heat but Team Hurley's Henrique came back with a long left backside and 5 radical turns for a 7.33 to steal the number 1 spot. She quickly backed up her main score with an average number on a right. Team Quik Roxy's Lacome attacked the lip of a fun-looking right for a decent number and moved into second.
Team Volcom's Le Car came back firing with two rights in under five minutes, posting a 7.50 and an excellent 8.10 to thrust the top position. The rest of the surfers watched as the stylish natural foot dominated the Chambre d'Amour l lineup with aggressive forehand lip bashes to take the win in Heat 2.
The teams number one athletes came up in the final heat with Marc Lacomare, Vincent Duvignac, Adrien Rapp, William Aliotti, Jorgann Couzinet and Julien Thouron in the water.
Last year's winner Duvignac got an early start with a couple of waves below average with just one turn on each. He later further asserted his pole position with a combination of turns on his forehand for a 6.50 to push #TeamRipCurl up front. Lacomare and Thouron both found a good air section on back-to-back lefts, but Lacomare went higher for a 6.90 against Thouron's 4.93.
The current World No. 6 on the QS, Couzinet also wanted his piece of the pie and threw a good reverse on his forehand for a 6.87 to put Team Soöruz in the lead. But the fireworks continued and with four minutes on the clock, Lacomare launched into another big forehand rotation perfectly executed and with an excellent 8 point ride to put Team Quik Roxy back on top of the virtual leaderboard. Couzinet, completely unfazed from the situation started on a right and pulled arguably the biggest air of the whole night in the dying minutes for a near-perfect 9.93 to finally give Team Soöruz the big win.
"It's always fun to surf in a team event cause we spend the whole year surfing for and by ourselves," Thyssen and Debierre added. ""Every point counts so we felt like we participated in the victory. And the wildcard slot in the Pro Anglet is a huge bonus for the two of us."