Australia’s Taj Burrow has claimed his first world surfing tour victory of the season, beating compatriot Julian Wilson in the final at Trestles in California.
A two-time world tour runner-up but never a world champion, 35-year-old Burrow posted a final score of 17.07, bettering Wilson’s 15.97, to win the Hurley Pro on Wednesday.
“I couldn’t be happier, I wanted this more than any of them,” a smiling Burrow said.
“It was a tough task but it just feels incredible to put in that effort and finish on top.
“I’m just over the moon.”
The victory bumped Burrow up one spot to fourth on the season’s rankings – behind leader and countryman Mick Fanning, American legend Kelly Slater and South Africa’s Jordy Smith – with three events remaining on the 10-stop tour.
It was Burrow 12th title in 16 years on the world championship tour and his previous win came last October at the O’Neill Coldwater Classic in Santa Cruz.
Wilson said while disappointed to miss out on winning one of his favourite events, he was glad it was fellow Australian Burrow who clinched the title.
“A huge congrats to Taj,” said Wilson, who rocketed up four places to seventh on the overall rankings.
“I’m stoked that he can get that notch on his belt that he really wanted to get.
“Everyone felt like it was his year to win this year, even though I really didn’t want him to.”
With 11-time tour champion Slater knocked out in a shock round-three defeat, Fanning reclaimed the No.1 spot on the world standings.
He now sits 1200 points clear of Slater, despite finishing 9th and without a win for the season.
Joel Parkinson, who was also eliminated in round three, has slipped from third to fifth ahead of countrymen Josh Kerr and Wilson.
The next leg of the tour starts on September 26 on the south west coast of France.