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Moore Wins With Grace + Fluidity

After a historic week in Lemoore, California, Carissa Moore has won the inaugural Surf Ranch Pro.

"I'm ecstatic to walk away with the win today," said Moore, who was able to hold off World No. 1 Stephanie Gilmore for her first Championship Tour victory of the 2018 season.

Moore dominated the event leaderboard from the onset. After finishing first in the preliminary rounds earlier in the week she grabbed the lead and never let go, staying in the top spot for three straight days.

"It's such a new thing, it's such an honor to be part of this whole deal," continued Moore. "It's a wonderful canvas and really shows what kind of surfer you are."

Carissa Moore Pushes Finals Day Standards
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The three-time World Champion increases previous score line with two new excellent scores for a combined heat total of 17.80 (8.60 + 9.20).

During the first runs of the morning World No. 1 Gilmore opened with a pair of sleepy mid-range scores, while Peterson and Marks pushed the scoreline up, both putting up 7-point rides on the left and the right.

But it was Moore that set the pace straight out of the gates. She shot right back to the top of the event leaderboard with an 8.33 on the left and a commanding 9-point ride on the right, accented by a huge carve on the end bowl.

"For me there's no pressure, I'm not in a title race, I'm just having fun," said Moore after run one out of three.

After her second run-a run is defined as one left and one right-Moore continued to dominate. Improving both of her scores, she applied even more pressure to the rest of the field.

3X World Champion Carissa Moore (HAW) has a points total of 17.60 (out of a possible 20.00) and on top of the leaderboard after her Qualifying Run 1 and Run 2 at the 2018 Surf Ranch Pro in Lemoore, CA, USA. Carissa Moore with an explosive turn on a righthander. WSL / Kelly Cestari

"I was stoked because I could cut loose a little bit. I needed to improve on my scores, so I needed to go big," said Moore.

Heading into the last frame of the finals, due to conditions and wave irregularities on the left-hander, Peterson, Marks and Moore were granted the opportunity to surf one extra left-hander.

6X World Champion and current Jeep Ratings Leader Stephanie Gilmore (AUS) has a points total of 16.26 (out of a possible 20.00) after her Qualifying Run 3 at the 2018 Surf Ranch Pro in Lemoore, CA, USA. Stephanie Gilmore WSL / Kelly Cestari

The adjustment proved to be irrelevant. Gilmore, Marks and Peterson were unable to convert their waves into meaningful scores.

"You just have to take a few deep breaths and just focus on what you can do," noted Gilmore.

Moore's last runs on the left and right proved to be mere victory laps for her.

"We have two more events now. My goal is just to finish strong and qualify for next year. I'm not in the title race, so going forward for the rest of the year I just want to have some really strong performances and gain some confidence," said Moore.

Carissa Moore, Stephanie Gilmore, Lakey Peterson and Tatiana Weston-Webb at the 2018 Surf Ranch Pro in Lemoore, CA, USA. Carissa Moore, Stephanie Gilmore, Lakey Peterson and Tatiana Weston-Webb together before the action. WSL / Kelly Cestari

For her part in the Surf Ranch Pro, Gilmore has opened up a 6,915-point lead over Peterson in the race for the 2018 world title. The Championship Tour will now head to Europe for the penultimate event of the season, where Gilmore could potentially clinch her record-tying seventh World Title.

"Now we'll head to France and see what happens there," said Gilmore with her signature smile.

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