The World Para Surfing Championships continued at Pismo Beach ©ISA/Sean Evans

Australia’s Mark Stewart and Chile’s Noemi Alvarez impressed on the second day of the World Para Surfing Championships in California.

Two-time world champion Stewart achieved the highest score of the day in the men’s kneel category, producing a score of 16.40 in his heat.

The International Surfing Association (ISA) said Stewart’s performance and the displays of women’s prone 2 competitors Sam Bloom and Joyce Neumueller have put Australia in contention to win the overall Team World Championship.

Australia are seeking to win the title for the first time, but will have to overall two-time champions Brazil.

Brazil leads the overall standings with seven of their surfers holding top spot across 16 divisions at the World Championships.

The women’s kneel division is led by Alvarez, as she seeks to upgrade from the silver medal she earned last year.

Portugal’s Marta Paço is seeking a maiden gold medal in the women’s visually impaired event, having won bronze back in 2018.

Paço achieved the highest wave score in the division today, received 8.50 points from the judges.

ISA President Fernando Aguerre has expressed optimism that there are strong competitions taking place across the different divisions at the World Championships.

Aguerre has targeted growing Para surfing as part of an effort to have the sport added to the Los Angeles 2028 Summer Paralympics programme.

The ISA said strong competition took place across divisions on the second day ©ISA/Sean Evans
The ISA said strong competition took place across divisions on the second day ©ISA/Sean Evans

"Seeing new talents challenging these established champions is both exciting and gratifying," Aguerre said.

"This shows that the sport of Para surfing continues to grow and develop around the world.

"I’m so happy to see the stoke on the faces of these athletes, young and old.

"Their commitment and determination is super strong and just reminds us that anything is possible in life.

"Seeing these emotions and performances, I have no doubt that Para Surfing would add enormous value to the Los Angeles 2028 Paralympic Games"

A record 130 athletes are participating at the World Championships in California.

Standing, kneeling, seated, prone and visually impaired competitions are taking place.