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Team Costa Rica steals the show at 2008 World Surfing Games

May 24

When it all came down to the final point counts Team Costa Rica was knocked from 4th place to 5th place by Team France whom beat Costa Rica by 1 point. While many focused how the loss of the fourth position was salado which is tico slang for bad luck, others were shocked that the surfers from the small surfing town in Costa Rica made such a HUGE splash at this international event.

Many say it is Costa Rica’s time to share in the global spotlight of professional surfing competition but when it is all said and done, it was the local surfers who did it all. Jason Torres, Luis Vindas, Nataly Bernold, Gilbert Brown, Jairo Perez, and Lisbeth Vindas are the reasons why Costa Rica is now a power to be reckoned with in international surfing. All of these surfers are from Playa Jaco except for Gilbert who hails from Puerto Viejo. But if you live here you know Gilbert is no stranger to Jaco, his monthly visits here in Jaco shows that the surfers in Costa Rican are united and are a real team.

Unless you are a competition surfer, you do not know the mental aspects of this sport. It is important that individually and as a team that you don’t psyche yourself out even when you are competing against your friends. But when you are coming from a tiny town and going up against rich countries, big time surfers with BIG TIME sponsorship the mental aspect takes on a whole new burden to be dealt with. This mental game was one of the key focuses of coach Jose Urena.

Coach Jose Urena of the surfing Team Costa Rica talked about the mental aspects of competing against surfing stars during the 2008 Billabong World Surfing Games in Portugal. Coach Urena was quoted “It’s a matter of making them think that they can win against those guys… We’d make them believe in what skills they had and told them that sjust because they are from Costa Rica they shouldn’t underestimate themselves” More importantly, Team Costa Rica’s surfing coach said “As a matter of fact, they’ve got(surfing stars of the WCT & WQS) the same thing all the other have” Which is to say, they all have the same skills and just need to focus on that and not be intimidated.

You can be sure this blogger will continue to cover our local surfing champions with information and news about your favorite Costa Rican surfers. Don’t forget if you are visiting Costa Rica next year, Playa Jaco will be hosting the 2009 Billabong World Surfing Games in Playa Hermosa, not to be confused with Playa Hermosa in Guanacaste. Check back in this site for information about places to stay, other tidbits about this international event coming to sleept Jaco.

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5 Responses

  1. 1

    I heard that Nataly Bernold is an up and comer in the womans surfing division. If you google her name, she comes up everywhere these days. Do you know who she has sponsoring her? I am a police officer but in my spare time, I arrange surfing tours to central america including CR. I wonder is she would be interested in allowing me to sponsor her so I can put her logo on my brochures as one of the surf instructors?

  2. 2

    Steve, that is kind of creepy. Asking to put her on your brochures….Nataly is 15 years old and yes she is a champion now and will be for years to come as she develops her skills.

    I am also sure that she has many sponsors but ones that are related to her surfing activities. I think it is a little premature for Nataly to be endorsing products but it is a nice thought. I will pass it on to her father when I see him next.

  1. [...] to win the national title plus hopefully win a spot on the National Team which will host the 2009 Billabong World Surfing Games Costa Rica later this year in August. This is a biggest professional surf event yet for Tico’s who will [...]

  2. 4
    Costa Rica is the preferred surf destination (via Pingback)

    [...] Rica. Jose Urena saw an opportunity to showcase Costa Rica and with a team of surfers in the 2008 World Surfing Games showing some real talent, he persuaded top officials to take a serious look at Costa Rica for the [...]

  3. [...] persuade Magnum to come on down to Jaco and Hermosa so he can check out the diggs prior to the 2009 Billabong ISA World Surfing Games in Hermosa this August. Plus, I don’t think any host here will disrespect him by presenting him for [...]

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