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Lakey Peterson Wins in Bali, Takes Over No. 1 Ranking on World Surfing Tour

Lakey Peterson
Lakey Peterson’s victory in Bali is her second of the season on the World Surf League’s Championship Tour. (Noozhawk file photo)

Santa Barbara’s Lakey Peterson won her second World Surf League Championship Tour event of the season and took over the world No. 1 ranking.

Peterson defeated reigning two-time tour champion Tyler Wright of Australia to capture the Corona Bali Protected at Keramas on Bali’s east coast on Sunday. 

It was the first women’s Championship Tour event in Bali, and Peterson’s victory vaulted her into first place on the world rankings list ahead over Stephanie Gilmore (35,630 points to 34,235).

“I’m over the moon,” Peterson told reporters after her 14.33 to 13.74 win one Wright. “This is just so crazy. Seeing Steph win in Brazil really lit a fire in me, and I came here and knew what I had to do. I’ve just been keeping calm all week. This is a really long year, so it’s been fun to be a part of it so far.

“To have a Final against Tyler was cool. She’s been surfing so well and when she took off on that last wave, I was so nervous and didn’t know if she’d get the score. In the end it worked out for me. That chair up the beach was so cool. There are people dancing everywhere. This is crazy.”

Peterson was treated like royalty after winning the title. She was given a crown and carried along the beach in a ceremonial chair.

It’s Peterson’s second title in four completed CT events this season. She also won a Bells Beach in Australia.

“Getting the Jeep Leader Jersey back is amazing,” Peterson said. “We are all here to have that on our back. I had it for a short second at Bells, then Steph has had it since, so it is nice to get it back from her and feel like the momentum is still with me.

“Everyone is surfing so well that it won’t be easy to keep. I just want to play my own game and almost act like I’m coming from behind still. I just want to enjoy every moment. I’d love to thank my fiance, my mum and my family for everything. It’s been a crazy few years and it feels like this year everything is coming together.”

Peterson got off to a great start in the final, scoring 8.33 on a wave to jump into the lead.

"I've been watching Lakey all week and I knew she would be tough to beat,” Wright told reporters. "She got that 8.33 early in the final and the waves slowed down and I couldn't catch her."

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