Lucas Fink Backside Air | Photo: Brooke Hamm (IG)
Lucas Fink of Rio De Janeiro, Brazil won the professional Men’s division at the 2022 Zap Pro/Am Championship held in Dewey Beach, DE on August 12th – 14th. The competition drew an international field of 196 competitors including 37 pro men with a $10,000 combined pro men and pro women prize purse. The event was the final stop of the 2022 Skim USA tour, and the men’s professional division also counted as the third stop of six on the 2022 United Skim Tour, the world’s only international professional skimboarding tour.
The Professional Men’s field featured 37 skimboarders including the current UST points leader Lucas Fink; 2021 Men’s UST champion Gerardo Valencia of Barra De Navidad, Mexico; and UST second place ranked rider Dane Cameron of Laguna Beach, CA.
The waves were one to three feet throughout the weekend. Both Friday and Saturday saw messy conditions during the morning, but in the afternoon on both days the wind cleaned up and offered fun conditions for the professional divisions. For the finals on Sunday, the waves were bigger, about 2-3 feet, and the conditions were glassy in the morning. Finals day offered a great canvas for professionals like Sam Stinnett, John Weber, Yahir Valencia and Dane Cameron.
In the final with Yahir Valencia and Lucas Fink, Fink took an early lead after sticking a 360 shuvit out to a driving wrap barrel and then on the very next wave landing a 360 shuvit out to a wrap with a 540 shuvit back in, both of which were scored at 8.27. Yahir answered back in the final 5 minutes of the heat with a 360 shuvit to a 360 spin out to a wrap and another 360 shuvit airdrop, scoring the highest single-wave score of the weekend with an 8.87. Ultimately Fink was able to back up his score with another 8.27 and secured his win over Yahir with a 0.01 lead to finish.
“It’s father’s day in Brazil, so this goes out to my dad, who is one of my main supporters, and also to all the other fathers out there who support their kids in chasing their dreams,” said Lucas Fink after his win. “I’m super stoked. What a contest it was. Every heat feels like a final. I get so nervous. I don’t know why people think I don’t. I’m so stoked. I’m so stoked with how the tour is going, not only for me but also for skimboarding as well. I’ve definitely seen some progression from all the riders, from the infrastructure, from the organizers, and also for myself as well. This is my mantra: follow your dreams. Do what you love. Make it happen. What a year it’s been. Let’s keep it going.”
After the three stops for the professional men’s division of the UST, Lucas Fink is currently on the top of the UST rankings followed by Dane Cameron and Yahir Valencia. Fink has a substantial lead in the UST rankings. Since the best four results of six events count, if Fink wins one of the next three events, he will clinch the 2022 UST Men’s title.
Bruno Sa Backside Wrap | Photo: Brooke Hamm (IG)
Remaining UST tour events include the Vic West in Laguna Beach, CA on August 27th-28th, Intrafalgar Dogflut in Cádiz, Spain on September 10th-11th and Exile Oktoberfest in Newport Beach, CA on September 17th-18th. In the Men’s division, points from the best four placings count toward each skimboarder’s 2022 UST points total.
Final Pro Men Results
- Lucas Fink – Rio De Janiero, Brazil
- Yahir Valencia – Barra de Navidad, Mexico
- Dane Cameron – Laguna Beach, CA
- Bruno Sa – Recife, Brazil
- John Weber – Lewes Beach, DE
- Sam Stinnett – Laguna Beach, CA
Words by David Haefele
On-Site Notes by Brett Mahon