To say that Petey Romaniuk really wanted to make the Ripcurl Grom Search championships would be an understatement.
With one final qualifier left, the Huntington Beach surfer flew all the way to Inlet, Florida, to take his final chance.
Luckily for him it paid off, times two.
The newly turned 14-year-old not only won the 14-under division but 30 minutes later, took the top spot in the 16-under as well.
With the wins, Romaniuk will be in both finals when they are held at the Kelly Slater Surf Ranch in Lemoore, CA. in December.
"It feels great, much relief to make the finals," Romaniuk said. "You are super stressed when you are doing it because only the winner gets to go to Kelly's Wave Pool and everyone is trying their best to win."
If Romaniuk felt the pressure, he sure didn't show it.
In a hard fought, 14-under semi-finals, he pulled out a 6.83 wave total to land firmly in second-pace and advance to the finals. Dax Eaton won the heat, thanks to a huge 9.23 wave and 14.23 heat total.
Once in the final, Petey was having a slow heat, sitting in third place with under 10 minutes remaining. That's when he left his mark on the event.
He surfed his way to a 7.67 wave score, giving him the lead, one he would hold onto until the final horn. His heat total of 13.90 topped Eaton's 11.13.
Knowing he already had a ticket to the Surf Ranch and brimming with excitement, Romaniuk started off hot in the 16-under finals, scoring a 5.93 and 7.57. He held off a late charge by Braeden Kopec and won with a heat score of 13.50 (to Kopec's 13.20).
"After I won the 14-under I was so relieved that I didn't feel stressed and had nothing to lose. So, I loosened up, and went for the win," he said.
Romaniuk now joins 10 other surfers in an attempt to be crowned one of the 4 Ripcurl Grom Search champions of 2022.