France Earns Gold

Records Shattered as Fourteen World Champions Crowned at 2023 ISA World Para Surfing Championship

Records Shattered as Fourteen World Champions Crowned at 2023 ISA World Para Surfing Championship

By ISA Staff

France claimed their first WPSC team gold medal, joining their wins across all other current ISA competitions. USA took the silver medal, Brazil, bronze. England won copper, their first ever ISA team medal, largely thanks to Charlotte Banfield’s victory in Women’s Stand 3.

Team France earned their first gold during the final day of the 2023 ISA World Para Surfing Championship. (Photo by Pablo Franco).


“It’s really, really exciting,” Banfield said. “I think the team we’ve got this year is the strongest we’ve ever had, and not only is it a strong team, it’s a supportive team.”

Three multiple World Champions added to their medal counts. Davi Teixeira (BRA) and Marta Paço (POR) each earned their third gold medal, while Victoria Feige (CAN) further extended her own record, collecting her fifth. This year however, para surfing’s winningest woman faced her strongest competition yet.

Davi Teixeria earned gold during the final day of the 2023 ISA World Para Surfing Championship. (Photo by Sean Evans).


“Seeing the level rise, it’s so sweet to have a victory, but seeing the movement rise is probably the best part,” Feige said. “It’s also so empowering, because I feel like I’m not alone, there’s other girls in the world with disabilities like mine who’ve got that fire to really push the level.”

New World Champions were crowned in six divisions. Aaron Paulk (HAW), Kirk Watson (AUS) and Sarah Almagro (ESP) each won their first gold medals after multiple previous finals, Laurie Phipps (FRA) claimed gold in her second, and Nagisa Ikegami (JPN) and Joel Taylor (AUS) topped the podium in their very first event.

Sarah Almagro earner her first gold medal at the 2023 ISA World Para Surfing Championship. (Pablo Franco).


“[This has been] the best experience of my life,” Taylor said. “I’ve waited for 30 years. I’ve dreamed of being a World Champion from when Eppo (Michael Eppelstun) won the first world title for Australia in bodyboarding. I worked a long time as a bodyboarder and then I had my injury and then over 20 years out of the water and 12 months later, as a para surfer, it’s mind-blowing.”

Alelí Medina (PUR), Rafael Lueders (BRA) and Llywelyn ‘Sponge Williams (WAL) each backed up their inaugural victories in 2022. After winning her first gold medal in the assisted Prone 2 classification in 2022, Emma Dieters (AUS) collected her second in her new classification, the unassisted Prone 1. 2020 Stand 2 gold medalist Roberto Pino (BRA) earned his first gold medal in the Stand 1 classification.

Norway’s Ismael Guilliorit returned to competition after six years away to make his first Final and win his nation their first ever ISA medal.

“For the Norwegian people, I opened the door,” Guilliorit said. “So now they can believe that we are able to take some good waves at the competition.”



Gold – France
Silver – USA
Bronze – Brazil
Copper – England

Men’s Vision Impairment 2

Gold – Aaron Paulk (HAW)
Silver – Roy Calderon (CRC)
Bronze – Pierrot Gagliano (FRA)
Copper – Jack Jackson (AUS)

Women’s Vision Impairment 2

Gold – Aleli Medina (PUR)
Silver – Melissa Reid (ENG)
Bronze – Lou Mechiche (FRA)
Copper – Ling Pai (CAN)

Men’s Vision Impairment 1

Gold – Kirk Watson (AUS)
Silver – Thomas Da Silva (FRA)
Bronze – Elias Ricardo Diel (BRA)
Copper – Ben Neumann (GER)

Women’s Vision Impairment 1

Gold – Marta Paço (POR)
Silver – Valentine Moskoteoc (FRA)
Bronze – Carmen Lopez (ESP)
Copper – Juliette Mas (FRA)

Men’s Prone 2

Gold – Davi Teixeira (BRA)
Silver – Jose Martinez (USA)
Bronze – Tomoki Fujiwara (JPN)
Copper – Ander Goenaga (ESP)

Women’s Prone 2

Gold – Sarah Almagro (ESP)
Silver – Jocelyn Neumueller (AUS)
Bronze – Celine Roulliard (FRA)
Copper – Ann Yoshida (HAW)

Men’s Prone 1

Gold – Joel Taylor (AUS)
Silver – Christian ‘Otter’ Bailey (USA)
Bronze – Casey Proud (HAW)
Copper – Kai Colless (AUS)

Women’s Prone 1

Gold – Emma Dieters (AUS)
Silver – Kayla Woputz (HAW)
Bronze – Tracy McKay (RSA)
Copper – Paloma Onate (ESP)

Men’s Kneel

Gold – Llywelyn ‘Sponge Williams (WAL)
Silver – Ibon Oregi (ESP)
Bronze – Reddog Wheatley (AUS)
Copper – Henrique Saraiva (BRA)

Women’s Kneel

Gold – Victoria Feige (CAN)
Silver – Vera Quaresma (BRA)
Bronze – Audrey Pascual (ESP)
Copper – Emmanuelle Blanchet (FRA)

Men’s Stand 2

Gold – Rafael Lueders (BRA)
Silver – Ismaël Guilliorit (NOR)
Bronze – Jean Paul Veaudry (RSA)
Copper – Kenjiro Ito (JPN)

Women’s Stand 2

Gold – Laurie Phipps (FRA)
Silver – Zoe Smith (ENG)
Bronze – Malu Mendes (FRA)
Copper – Kirsty Taylor (WAL)

Men’s Stand 1

Gold – Roberto Pino (BRA)
Silver – Shingo Kato (JPN)
Bronze – Camilo Abdula (POR)
Copper – Maxime Clarkin (FRA)

Women’s Stand 1

Gold – Nagisa Ikegami (JPN)
Silver – Liv Stone (USA)
Bronze – Catalina Castro (CHI)
Copper – Chikako Takao (JPN)

You must be logged in to post a comment.

You Might Also Like...

Click on any of the links below to read more articles from SPORTS ‘N SPOKES!

Skip to content