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Rapid Surf League crowns 2023 champions

The RSL Pro/Am Season 2023 presented by Dextro Energy is done and dusted and what a crazy one it was. This year’s RSL season was a little different from the years before. While surfers had to qualify for RSL Pro events through a ranking from 2018 to 2022, the RSL’s Pro/Am format allowed everyone to participate in 2023: Professionals and amateurs, aka, Pros and Ams.

And this was the 2023 format: over three Pro/Am qualifying events the top 12 women and men qualified for the Rapid Surf League season final at Wakeparadise in Milan.


VKB Fuchslochwelle Pro/Am

But let’s start from the beginning. Kick-off event was the VKB Fuchslochwelle Pro/Am at Nürnberger Dauerwelle in Nuremberg. Due to the wave being semi-natural, it required a certain amount of water in river Pegnitz so the RSL decided to implement the good old waiting period. The event took place on the first possible weekend, March 18th. Surfers were blessed with a perfect wave, balmy 18° and amazing organization and hospitality from the local surf club. The competition results also showed that mixing veterans with newcomers would create the excitement, and set the tone for the whole season to come.

Results

Women:

  1. Mara Ernst (GER)
  2. Valeska Schneider (GER)
  3. Ina Schorr (GER)

Men:

  1. Nicolas Marusa (GER)
  2. Yanik Mallwitz (GER)
  3. David Schütz (GER)

L&T Hasewelle Pro/Am

From Nuremberg, the RSL ventured North to Osnabrück, to L&T Hasewelle to be exact. The contest took place on a Citywave on March 25th in Northern Germany’s biggest privately owned sports department store L&T. It’s a unique spot, atrium-like architecture and the vibe was incredible. Local surfer Anika Weizel was able to defend her 2022 title in a hard-fought battle against Valeska Schneider while Nici Marusa took home a second consecutive win against Durby Castillo. Fabiana Klein came third in the women’s, local Ron Köller rounded up the men’s podium in third. 

Results

Women:

  1. Anika Weizel (GER)
  2. Valeska Schneider (GER)
  3. Fabiana Klein (SUI)

Men:

  1. Nicolas Marusa (GER)
  2. Durby Castillo (CR/SUI)
  3. Ron Köller (GER)

The Riverwave Surf Open

The 2023 Riverwave Open scored great weather in Austria. Photo Matze Ried

Next up was the RSL partner event at The Riverwave in beautiful Austria on April 22nd. It could have rained, it could have snowed, but once again surfers and organizers were greeted with a beautiful day full of sunshine and great surfing on this semi-natural river wave one hour from Salzburg.

After a long and intense day, Ina Schorr was able to defend her 2022 The Riverwave Surf Open title, Valeska Schneider came second once again and Jana Wessels from Switzerland finished third. The men’s division was a heated affair between Nicolas Marusa, Marius Gerlach and Almkanal local Niklas Sandhoff. The final saw the only 10 point wave surfed this season by none other than eventual event winner Nicolas Marusa. With this victory Nici made it three in a row, Marius Gerlach came a close second, Almkanal local Niklas Sandhoff came in third despite a late charge.

Results

Women:

  1. Ina Schorr
  2. Valeska Schneider
  3. Jana Wessels

Men:

  1. Nicolas Marusa
  2. Marius Gerlach
  3. Niklas Sandhoff

Milano Pro/Am

After Austria the RSL top 12 ranking women / men was set and it was time to go a little more South for the season final at Wakeparadise in Milan. And what a season final it was. Temperatures rose, it was hot in and out of the water. RSL and Wakeparadise wildcards joined the qualified top 12 women and men for an amazing day at Idroscalo on a 10 meter wide Unit Surf Pool.

The season final was held in RSL’s own CUT: 2 CALL contest format, which provided intense action all the way to the final. Ian Cataranziti, local from Rome, thrilled the local crowd by making it all the way into the semis. And while the sun set over Milan, Valeska Schneider was able to secure a first and well deserved victory over wildcard Maya Sauer who looked almost unbeatable all event long but eventually had to settle for second. 

The men’s final was a nail biter! Durby Castillo came fourth, Vincent Schneider third and thus we had Marius Gerlach and Nicolas Marusa in the final call. And man was it a close one. In the 3rd and final call it was Nici’s better performed frontside air reverse with frontside grab that made the difference and put Nicolas Marusa on top of the podium yet again. What a season it was for Nici as he was also crowned national German Rapid Champ a week earlier. Hats off to Marius Gerlach though who was so close to his first RSL win.

Results

Women:

  1. Valeska Schneider
  2. Maya Sauer
  3. Anika Weizel

Men:

  1. Nicolas Marusa
  2. Marius Gerlach
  3. Vincent Schneider
rapid surf league milano pro:am winners 2023
Here are your 2023 Milano Pro/Am winners. Photo @rapidsurfleague / Matze Ried

RSL Pro / Am events give aspiring surfers across Europe the chance to perform against established pros at local events and on their local waves. The Rapid Surf League’s goal is to promote and push the fast-growing sport of rapid surfing by organizing the first-ever Pro and Pro / Am league on standing waves regardless the wave system.

Rapid Surf League Presenting Partner is Dextro Energy* .Supporting Partner is Dakine. Time Keeping Partner is G-Shock and the Media Partner is Wellenreiten.de


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