Got Rippers? 2019 Toyota USA Prime Season Final Event At Ponce Did!

March 22, 2019 • Competition, East Coast Contests

Ponce Inlet, Fla. (March 10, 2018) – After two days of competition among the East Coast’s best surfing talent, USA Surfing announced the winners of its Toyota Prime Series Presented By Got Milk? event held this weekend at Florida’s Ponce Inlet and those earning Prime East Season Champion Titles. See results below. Despite the smaller conditions, several surfers produced big scores on two-to-three-foot wedgy peaks.

Beautiful, drive on the beach Ponce Inlet Park and the contest overview of it’s preserved, 52 acres of Old Florida coastal heaven. PHOTO : DUGAN

Highlights included a perfect 10 by Cocoa Beach’s William Hedleston, backed up by a 9.6 for the event’s highest heat total of 19.6. Zoe Benedetto scored a 9.93 and 9.3 in the first round and a 9 in day two’s semi-final. USA Surfing’s junior national team coach Brett Simpson said the impressive scores “were the result of big combination maneuvers with great flow and flair, which is toughest to pull off in small surf.”

The final stop of the Toyota USA Surfing Prime Series presented by Got Milk? took on extra excitement, as the cumulative points from the series determine which athletes qualify for junior national championships at Lower Trestles in California in June.

One East Coast surfer making a name for himself is William Hedleston. He’s on a roll and not looking back. William had a great weekend grabbing a 3rd in the U18 and the win in U16. Not too shabby. He was also the only surfer to post a 10, backed up with a 9.6 for the weekend’s highest heat total of 19.6. PHOTO : DUGAN

Qualification for USA Surfing Championships is based on athletes’ top two event points. The top 50 percent of competitors’ total points in each division will receive an invitation this week with a deadline to accept by the end of the month.

“The opportunity to surf in Championships at Lowers in four-person heats is something every athlete looks forward to,” USA Surfing CEO Greg Cruse said. “Not only is the wave one of the best in the nation, the results determine which surfers make USA Surfing’s junior national teams.”

*Please scroll down below bonus photo gallery for results of the 2018 USA Prime at Ponce…..

Zoe Benedetto kept her winning streak up with a 1st in U18 and a 2nd in U16. Not bad for the weekend event. PHOTO : DUGAN

Brett Simpson with Girls U18 – ( L to R ) First place Zoe Benedetto, 2nd Ava McGowen, 3rd Morgan Iglay, & 4th Coral Schuster PHOTO : DUGAN

This boy has upped his surfing game and is surfing better than ever, getting a 3rd in Boys U16 and surfing into the semi’s in the Boys U18. Blayr Barton. Look for an upcoming  Who Da Guy / Girl profile on Blayr next week as the young VB helps us kick off the new, digital reconstitution of one of ESM’s favorite, highly sought after print features next week on! PHOTO : DUGAN

This girl is on fire. Ava McGowan showed up and put out her notice that she’s ready to compete, winning the Girls U16 and getting a 2nd in the Girls U18. PHOTO : DUGAN

Brett Simpson with Girls U16 – ( L to R ) First place Ava McGowan, 2nd Zoe Benedetto, 3rd Sarah Abbott, & 4th Taylor Green. PHOTO : DUGAN

Another surfer from Brevard County, Florida making a name for himself is Logan Radd. He has been grabbing first place trophies in almost every contest he enters. Logan took home the win in Boys U14. PHOTO : DUGAN

Boys U14 – ( L to R ) Brett Simpson with 1st place Logan Radd, 2nd Kendrick Remahl, 3rd Seamus, & 4th Ethan Harbinson PHOTO : DUGAN

The Girls surfing was some of the best competition over the weekend with everyone stepping up their game. Coral Schuster snaps a nice turn in the Girls U18 final and ended up in 4th place. PHOTO : DUGAN

ESA’s Men’s East Coast champ Fergus Kelly has really stepped up his game. Even with snaps like this he was put out in the quarter’s of the U18 but gained more competition knowledge that will help him in the future . PHOTO : DUGAN

Down from the Carolinas, Owen Moss is a name that has been heard a lot lately. This kid can surf, getting to the semis in the U16 and placing 4th in the Boys U18. PHOTO : DUGAN

The two Owens, Owen O’Donell & Owen Moss . Remember their names. PHOTO : DUGAN

The grom pool is  getting deeper and deeper on the east coast and it seems like they all have the same first names! Yet another grom who rip’s – and another named Owen to get confused with the two extremely talented Owens above – North Carolina’s Owen Carter surfed to the semis in the Boys U16 and is fast becoming one of our finest. PHOTO : DUGAN

Central Florida standout Blake Speir did what he could to place in the Boys U18 but due to a slow wave heat he ended his run with a 2nd place finish. PHOTO : DUGAN

Boys U18 – ( L to R ) 1st Tommy Coleman, 2nd Blake Speir, 3rd William Hedleston, & 4th Owen Moss PHOTO : DUGAN

Making his mark in the contest arena, Sterling Makish made it to the semi-finals in the Boys U14 but watch for him to take the win home very soon. His surfing just keeps getting better and better so it’s just a matter of time. PHOTO : DUGAN

Ryan Huckabee is in a transitional stage as he’s just grown about a foot and has gained more weight making him more dangerous competitively than ever. Ryan made it to the semis in the Boys U18 and got 2nd in the Boys U16. PHOTO : DUGAN

Boys U16 – ( L to R ) 1st William Hedleston, 2nd Ryan Huckabee, 3rd Blayr Barton, & 4th Braeden Kopec. PHOTO : DUGAN

One of two New Yorkers in the event, CJ Mangio made it to the semi-finals in the U14 Division. PHOTO : DUGAN

Pro surfer, surfboard shaper, and coach Shea Lopez guided Zoe Benedetto to a 2nd in Girls U16 and the win in Girls U18. Looks like their collaboration is paying off. PHOTO : DUGAN

The “Moose”, South Jersey’s Seamus Carey, banging one on his way to a 3rd in the BOYS U14. PHOTO : DUGAN

Two to keep an eye on are the the Caluccio Brothers, Gavin and Logan. Gavin shown here made it to the quarter-finals and no doubt we’ll be seeing some finals as his surfing matures. PHOTO : DUGAN

High tide beach parking at Ponce Inlet, Florida. PHOTO : DUGAN

Results of the USA Surfing Prime regular season final event:

Girls U16

1st  Ava McGowan, New Smyrna, Fla.

2nd Zoe Benedetto, Palm City, Fla.

3rd  Sarah Abbott, Palm Beach, Fla.

4th  Taylor Green, Milton, Fla.

Girls U18

1st  Zoe Benedetto, Palm City, Fla.

2nd Ava McGowan, New Smyrna, Fla.

3rd  Morgan Iglay, Manasquan, N.J.

4th  Coral Schuster, Cocoa Beach, Fla

Boys U18

1st  Tommy Coleman, Vero Beach, Fla.

2nd Blake Speir, Melbourne Beach, Fla.

3rd  William Hedleston, Cocoa Beach, Fla.

4th  Owen Moss, Wrightsville Beach, N.C.


Boys U16

1st  William Hedleston, Cocoa Beach, Fla.

2nd Ryan Huckabee, Flagler Beach, Fla.

3rd  Blayr Barton, Virginia Beach, Va.

4th  Braeden Kopec, Flagler Beach, Fla.


Boys U14

1st   Logan Radd, Satellite Beach, Fla.

2nd  Kendrick Remahl, Carolina Beach, N.C.

3rd  Seamus Carey, Linwood, N.J.

4th  Ethan Harbinson, New Smyrna Beach, Fla.