On Monday, a breaching shark that was spotted beyond the lineup during the 2016 Swatch Women’s Pro brought the competition to a halt and kept surfers out of the water for just over a half-hour before the contest resumed.
As reported by SURFING, Sage Erickson and Johanne Defay were set to compete in the quarterfinals of the Swatch Women’s Pro at the famed Lower Trestles surf spot in Southern California when a roughly 6-foot shark breached just beyond the contest lineup.
The contest was immediately put on hold and both Defay and Erickson were kept out of the water.
While, as SURFING notes, World Surf League (WSL) deputy commissioner Jessi Miley-Dyer originally said the stoppage in competition was due to the “ups and downs of the day’s conditions” she later acknowledged that the shark spotting was the reason for pausing the contest.
Defay and Erickson were allowed to enter the water, where Erickson defeated Defay to move on to the semifinals.
The incident calls to mind Mick Fanning’s highly publicized run-in with a great white during the finals of the 2015 J-Bay Open.