This is a very strange year for all of us in which we had to adapt in the best possible way. Personally, what has challenged me the most is facing changes and uncertainty. The feeling that my castle was reeling has caused me a lot of anxiety. In addition, this year we were in a battle for a spot for the ISA World Games that qualifies for the Olympic Games and I had some very important appointments.
When I realized all this wasn’t happening anytime soon, I focused on the extra time this situation has given me room to continue improving as a surfer. After surfing for a few months, I already felt I was missing a challenge in which I could put into action what I had been working on…
A few weeks after this thought, we were informed that the prestigious Pantin Classic event would be held. It was a great joy for me. I finally had a specific date to return to competition. So I have not hesitated for a second to plan the trip to Galicia and attend the appointment. Once again, Galicia has received me with great weather and very good waves. In addition to its delicious cuisine of course. Galicia is one of my favorite places in the world, for everything it offers; landscapes, waves, its people … I have always enjoyed this coast a lot.
Once settled I got to work to prepare my entry into the competition in the best way. Firstly, my routine consisted of surfing the competition wave early to get my references and test my boards. Then I would go home to have breakfast and go out in search of the most suitable surf spot for the second one.
Taking advantage of this training is also a way to discover new places, see new landscapes and find waves that until now I hadn’t surf. In the afternoon, after lunch, I decided whether to take a little run in the contest wave as they finished or just rest and take a walk through the center of Cedeira where I usually stay when I go to Pantin.
The day before competing I still remember the positive nerves I had. I felt the tingling in my stomach that excites you but at the same time focuses you on the goal. The forecast for this first day of competition was massive with some sets that reached three meters. For those who know this beach, they know that it is no joke to surf it and even less to find two good waves in 25 minutes!
It was quite a challenge to get through this heat. However, I got two decent waves and finished the heat with a high score thanks to a risky maneuver that I tried in the last section.
One of the things I like the most about doing a good performance is that I earn the opportunity to do another heat in which I will face different conditions and new rivals. The second round I surfed in the afternoon in spectacular conditions. It’s nice to see the natural stands of Pantin full of spectators excited to see good waves ridden so this was a reason to get psyched and give my best. Had two high scores and I got a pass to the quarterfinals of four surfers.
In this heat, I would face two great favorites to win the event but that was not a reason to discourage me. I just knew that it was the best time to play my cards. The next day the first one surfing the heat at 8 in the morning. Thanks to the routine that I had since I arrived in Galicia, I was able to position myself well at the peak and choose the best waves. However, my rivals were better and I needed to find two big maneuvers to be able to get back into the heat.
I’ve had a fun run at the event and felt motivated to go back to work for future challenges. The last days that we had left in Galicia we enjoyed visiting around, lying on the beach, and eating Galician octopus. Until the next time Pantin Classic!