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|Costa Rica Wins 4th; Gilbert BRown Wins Historic Bronze Medal @ PanAm Games|
|Written by yann|
|Saturday, 17 November 2007|
GILBERT BROWN WINS HISTORIC BRONZE MEDAL WITH 3RD PLACE OPEN FINISH AT VIII JUEGOS PANAMERICANOS SURF CHILE 2007. COSTA RICA NATIONAL SURF TEAM SCORES 4TH OVERALL.SQUAD RETURNS HOME VICTORIOUS TONIGHT ON COPA AIRLINES FLIGHT; ARRIVES 7:00 P.M. COSTA RICA TIME AT SAN JOSE’S JUAN SANTAMARIA INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT
IQUIQUE, CHILE November 12, 2007 – Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica’s Gilbert Brown yesterday made surf history for his country when he raced out of the second chance repercharge Finals, into the Open Finals, and maneuvered into 3rd place of the Panamericanos Surf Chile 2007 in Iquique. With this Bronze medal, he obtained the best performance ever by a Costa Rican surfer in the Pan American Surfing Games in the Open division.
In front of over 1,000 people on the beach, Brown ran through his repercharge heats—the first obstacle of the morning—by taking 1st, 2nd, than 1st in those Finals, and then positioned himself for the Open Finals. He was in 2nd place in that heat based an illustrious performance. Yet, in the last five minutes, his opponent, the Peruvian Javier Swayne, literally scooped in to score enough to take 1st place, knocking Gilbert to 3rd, and the Brazilian Erc De Souza to 2nd place.
Still, the Bronze medal was groundbreaking for Brown and Costa Rica. Only two years ago, Tamarindo’s Federico Pilurzu cracked the first ceiling when he earned a Copper medal with a 4th place Open finish at the Reef Panamericano de Surf Peru 2006 Copa Motorola. (Pilurzu missed this year as he is making more history as the first Costa Rican at the Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) World Qualifying Series (WQS) Reef Hawaiian Pro, which kicks off the Triple Crown in Ali’i Beach Park in Haleiwa Town on Oahu’s famous North Shore.) Jaco’s Jason Torres, claimed Gold at Peru 2006 with his medal in the Junior category of that tournament. That prize remains the only Gold medal the Ticos have ever earned in the Pan American Surfing Games.
“My best birthday gift was to maintain my stature until the end of these Pan American Games, especially when the level was simply incredible. In addition, with this I collaborated with the team to earn a 4th place position,” said Brown, who yesterday also turned 25.
The teams award was thanks to the stellar work of everyone on the 18-member team that included Torres (Jaco), 2007 Triple Crown Champion Luis Vindas (Jaco); 2007-08 Costa Rican National Surf Champion Diego Naranjo (Jaco); 2001-02 Costa Rican National Surf Champion Gilbert Brown (Puerto Viejo); two-time Central American Women’s Surf Champion Lisbeth Vindas (Jaco); 2007-08 Costa Rican National Women’s Surf Champion Nataly Bernold (Tamarindo); 2007-08 Costa Rican National Junior Surf Champion Jairo Pérez (Jaco); 2007-08 Costa Rican National Boys Surf Champion Carlos Muñoz (Playa Esterillos); 2007-08 Costa Rican National Women’s Bodyboard Champion Jimena Calvo (Boca Barranca); 2007-08 2nd Place Costa Rican National Bodyboard Champion Silvio Mangel (Limón ); José Calderón (Jaco); Orlando Solís (Jaco); and Mauricio Umaña (Jaco). Costa Rica earned a total of 20,267 points with its 4th place; Brazil was 1st with 29,992; Chile 2nd with 24,372, and Perú 3rd with 24,072.
The women on the Tico Team also saw a lot of action yesterday. While Lisbeth Vindas did not manage to classify all the way to the end of the Women’s division, after placing 4th in the repercharge Finals, she contributed points and veteran experience to the other members of the group. Meanwhile, Bernold, the youngest member of the pack at 14 years and only on her third international challenge with this tournament, blew through the other country’s women to Round 5 of repercharge, was strong and confident, if soft-spoken on dry land.
Bodyboarder Jimena Calvo, 17, however, was a bright new shining hope for the Costa Rican National Surf Team. After years of disappointment in this category and in the Male bodyboarder division, the Ticos saw Calvo pass all the way to the repercharge Finals, adding desperately needed points to their total. She placed 4th in that heat, and was cheered on very loudly by the blue, white and red flag-toting guys and gals on the shore.
In 2008, the Pan-American Games for the Junior category will be celebrated in Isla Margarita, Venezuela. Look for a Costa Rican National Junior Surf Team there! Meanwhile, for further details and information on the Costa Rican National Surf Team at the Panamericanos Surf Chile 2007 in Iquique, please go to www.surfingcr.net
|Last Updated ( Saturday, 17 November 2007 )|
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