Photos: Swell time at the WSL Finals

www.latimes.com
7 min read
fairly easy
Coverage of the one-day, winner-takes-all World Surf League Championship finals with back-to-back champion Carissa Moore and three-time world champion Gabriel Medina.
Olympic gold medalist and defending champion Carissa Moore of Honolulu won her fifth world title and Gabriel Medina of Brazil claimed his third during high surf at the Rip Curl World Surf League finals on Tuesday at Lower Trestles.

It was the first time the WSL decided its world champions in a one-day, winner-take-all format involving the top five women's and men's surfers based on the season points standings.

Moore was seeded directly into the final match, where she beat Australia's Tatiana Weston-Webb to defend her world title.

Medina, who ended the regular season with a huge points lead, beat third-seeded Filipe Toledo of Brazil in the men's final. Toledo had eliminated Olympic gold medalist and defending world champion Italo Ferreira of Brazil, the second seed.

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Moore and Medina each won $200,000 out of the identical $470,000 purses.

Australia's Stephanie Gilmore lost the day's first match, ending her shot at a record eighth women's world title.

The narrow stretch of beach, featuring cobblestones that create some of the best waves in California, was packed with a large crowd.

After a weather delay on Monday, the WSL finals were set for a southern swell bringing in six- to eight-foot waves.

A reported shark siting during the second heat and again before the women's final heat put the competition on a brief hold.

San Clemente, CA - September 14: Seven-time WSL champion Stephanie Gilmore of Australia waxes up her board before her match with Johanne Defay, of France, in match 1 at the Rip Curl WSL Finals Tuesday, Sept. 14, 2021 at Lower Trestles, San Clemente. For the first time in the history of the WSL Championship Tour, the 2021 World Champion is decided by a one-day, winner-take-all event titled the Rip Curl WSL Finals at Lower Trestles on Tuesday, Sept. 14, 2021 in San Clemente, CA. (Allen J. Schaben/Los Angeles Times)

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San Clemente, CA - September 14: Fans of seven-time WSL champion Stephanie Gilmore of…
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