Online competitioin nets $50K donation of testing vouchers
Surfersvillage Global Surf News, 30 October, 2014 - The Mauli Ola Foundation's Battle for the Breasts presented by Ambry Genetics, an online surf video contest held in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, wrapped up this week on Surfline.com. In the final round of voting, Bethany Hamilton defeated fellow Kauai surfer Tatiana Weston-Webb with a tail-high air reverse to take the win.
Hamilton's victory was sweetened by a $50,000 donation of Ambry Genetic testing vouchers on her behalf to Cancer Research Collaboration/ Breastlink based in Orange County, CA. Weston-Webb's second place finish saw $30,000 in vouchers go to Jefferson Breast Care Center in Philadelphia, PA. The two semifinalists – Sally Fitzgibbons and Laura Enenver – earned $10,000 for University of Texas Foundation and Thompson Cancer Survival Center, respectively.
The remaining 12 surfers/clinics that participated in the Battle for the Breasts will each receive one BRCA 1 &2 testing voucher from the Mauli Ola Foundation courtesy of Ambry Genetics.
"Battle for the Breasts is a great cause and also a great way to showcase women's surfing," Bethany Hamilton said. "I was stoked to be representing BreastLink. It made me feel special because I was working hard for something beyond myself."
For Hamilton and Weston-Webb, the road to the final wasn't exactly easy. With a stacked field of the world's best female surfers filling the draw, Hamilton overcame Alana Blanchard (R1), Alessa Quizon (R2) and Sally Fitzgibbons (R3) with a collection of A-plus clips assembled while filming for her new movie in Bali. On the other side of the draw, Weston-Webb took out Tyler Wright (R1), Dimity Stoyle (R2), and Laura Enever (R3) with a series of barrel-to-carve combos, a late drop over a razor-sharp Tahitian reef as well as a massive barrel ride at Teahupoo.
"Huge congratulations to Bethany," said Hans Hagen, Executive Director of Mauli Ola Foundation. "She has been nothing short of an inspiration for everyone to fight the good fight. Her donation of the Ambry testing vouchers to the team at Cancer Research Collaboration/BreastLink will assist in their mission of saving lives through early detection, research and treatment."
Mauli Ola presented the winning check to the staff at BreastLink and CRC on Monday in an impromptu ceremony.
"We're so proud to have been paired with Bethany," said BreastLink's Dr. Lisa Curcio. "These vouchers are a great opportunity for our patients who are under insured or have no insurance and don't have access to genetic testing. They ultimately help us test them to monitor for cancer."
"We were very pleased to have the opportunity to support the healthcare community with genetic testing vouchers for breast cancer patients through Battle for the Breasts," said Ambry Genetics President James Dunlop. "The key to beating cancer is early detection and we hope that this modest contribution saves as many lives as possible. The battle has just begun."
The inaugural Battle for the Breasts featured sixteen of the world's best female surfers competing for votes in an online video contest format during Breast Cancer Awareness Month. The event was created to raise awareness for the importance of early detection in the fight against breast cancer, with the participating surfers competing for $125,000 in hereditary breast cancer testing vouchers donated on their behalf by Ambry Genetics.