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Expectations w/ Mason Ho. Frame by Ho & Pringle Productions

A New Right Was Just Added To This Year’s CT

But it won’t make us forget J-Bay.

news // Mar 9, 2024
Words by Pedro Ramos
Reading Time: 2 minutes

“Let’s be honest, the weather isn’t helping.”

The fatalism is palpable. It’s very cold, the wind is bending trees in half, and cats and dogs are falling from the sky. It’s no news that winter can be fickle in Western Portugal, but the forecast for this year’s MEO Rip Curl Portugal Pro is something you wouldn’t wish upon your worst enemy.

But there’s only so much you can do with spilt milk, and it doesn’t include getting a surf comp underway.

Desperate times call for desperate measures, and on Thursday evening, surfers got word of a probable event restart on Sunday. As of today, the contest has been called off for Saturday, even though all signs point to competition resuming at 7:30 AM (local time) on Sunday at Molhe Leste — the wedge breaking off the jetty that flanks the north end of Supertubos.

Local wildcard Matias Canhoto at Molhe Leste a couple of weeks ago. Footage courtesy of David Canhoto

Molhe Leste is a hollow, powerful, wedgy right over tightly-packed sand, cherished and guarded with vigor by local bodyboarders and surfers. It doesn’t break as often as its big sister down the beach, which adds to its novelty factor. It comes as no surprise how packed and nearly impossible it is to snag one from its resident absolutist rulers on a good day.

Much more sheltered than Supertubos, it needs a bigger, long-period swell to start working, preferably from the West or Southwest, with ideal winds ranging anywhere from North to East. At the time of publishing, a 14ft West swell at 14s is expected for Sunday. Significant downsides might include a strong breeze from the West and a 10ft tide variation due to a new moon on the 10th. 

Today, while logistics and a backup structure were tended to on land, a great number of both men’s and women’s CT surfers were getting acquainted with the alternate venue. Among the pack, Jordy and Robbo were putting in serious effort, while Jake Marshall, Kanoa Igarashi, and Gabriel Medina (all relegated to the Elo round), tried to click into gear amidst the blown-out mess.

But it won't make us forget J-Bay.
Reality w/ Imaikalani deVault. Frame by SURFE TV

PS: The season finale of Stab In The Dark With Kolohe Andino screens a stone’s throw (if you’ve a really good arm) from Molhe Leste, on Saturday, March 9, at 58 Surf – Rua Infante D. Henrique 4, Ferrel. Doors open at 7 PM and close late. 

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