Current World No. 1 Carissa Moore (HAW) has been confirmed as the first surfer to clinch a spot in the WSL Final 5. Her confirmation comes after the early exit of both Stephanie Gilmore (AUS) and Tatiana Weston-Webb (BRA) here in Brazil. Moore’s brilliant 2023 campaign has already earned her three event victories this season. She is well on her way to another after overcoming Bettylou Sakura Johnson (HAW) in the Quarterfinals today.

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I’m super stoked,” said Moore. “We all want to get as high on the rankings as we can by the end of the season so we have a spot in the Finals. Going into every year my goal is definitely to make it to Trestles and I’m really stoked and looking forward to it."

CArissa Moore. Daniel Smorigo/WSL

Rising star Sakura Johnson looked to spoil Moore’s chances of advancing in their back-and-forth Quarterfinal battle. Sakura Johnson’s 7.17 (out of possible 10) for a critical backside turn put Moore under pressure with the clock winding down. The five-time World Champion responded in decimating form, posting an excellent 8.83 to secure her place in the Semifinals again. 

“Bettylou (Sakura Johnson) is someone who I have a lot of respect for,” said Moore. “It’s crazy that a few years ago she was taking part in one of my Moore Aloha events, so to see her come up and represent Hawaii and what we’re all about on the world stage. To get to compete with her and have a few good matches is cool. The energy is electric here in Brazil and I enjoy my time here. It’s good energy all around.”