A Word With Courtney Conlogue

Women's World Tour event No. 4 winner and the current world No. 3

Winner Courtney Conlogue. Photo: TSB Bank New Zealand Surf Festival

The 2013 TSB Bank NZ Surf Festival featuring the Dow AgroSciences Pro (yes, that is really the name of a Women’s World Tour event) wrapped up last week, and in the end California's Courtney Conlogue who beat out Hawaii's Coco Ho in the Final. This is Courtney's second would tour victory, which provides a massive boost to her current ranking and adds a name to the race for the 2013 title.

After reaching the Semifinals last weekend at the Bell's Beach event, Courtney proved herself by defeating current World Tour leader Carissa Moore in the Quarters then ousting World Champion Stephanie Gilmore in the Semifinal at Taranaki. In the end, Courtney beat out Coco Ho in the Final, winning the event with a final score of 14.0 to Coco's 9.27. Now, after four consecutive World Tour events in Australia and then New Zealand, the girls will take a break before heading to Brazil in May. We caught up with the NZ winner to talk about the contest, her training, and what she’s most excited about next. --Shelby Stanger

Congrats. How does it feel to be the champ?
I am definitely really stoked. I was just taking it heat by heat, so I am really stoked it all came together. I've been in Australia since mid January, starting at Burleigh, then Newcastle, then Snapper, then Margarets, then Bells Beach, and now here in New Zealand, so it's pretty much just been contest to contest. It's definitely been a long trip and a lot of work, but it's definitely paying off.

Are you training with a coach?
I was going to the gym at Burleigh and Snapper. I got a gym pass at Margaret's and was training there as well. I trained with Mark Richardson while I was on the Gold Coast and he's been helping me every year and he sends me inspirational texts. I have also been doing some mental work. Other than that, I have just been focusing on myself and my surfing and taking it to the next level and trying to not to over-think things. A lot of the time when your mind breaks down it affects how you perform in the heat, so I just try to keep myself calm and collected. This contest I just wanted to maintain and keep everything going.

So what are you going to do now to celebrate?
Right now I am gonna go get a coffee! Then I’m just gonna unwind and rest because I stink from all the champagne. It smells sweet at first, but now it's getting hot and starting to stink. Then tonight we have a Surfer's Ball in Taranaki.

What do you do these days when you aren't surfing?
I am usually exploring, sketching, walking, and whatever comes to mind. I draw anything from random stuff like the room I am in or pics from mags.

Who do you travel with on Tour?
I am here with my mom. She comes to all my World Tour events. She's my coach and mentor. Sally [Fitzgibbons] and I are always cruising together as well as Sage [Erickson], all the U.S. buddies stick together. It's fun being on Tour together. We have our own groups as far as training regimens, but we all hang together.

What are you looking forward to next the most?
I am looking forward to France the most. I love Europe.