2003 NSSA NATIONALS: FINAL DAY

posted by / News / June 27, 2004

Surf: Firing! Well overhead, consistent and trunk-able.

Events held: The whole deal.

Nature’s call: I’m sore, seriously; I’ve got puncture wounds. That’s it; I’m calling my lawyer.

Predicted: An aggro pack of old dudes in 4/3s, gloves and bicycle helmets, riding 12’2″ “shortboards” invade the lineup come 5am.

Heat of the day: If it wasn’t Alex Grey laying a roaring forehand wrap, it was Kilian Garland killing the lip. And if it wasn’t either of them, it was the set of the day catching ‘em all inside. The explorer juniors final was an all-out wave feast — and more than a number of watching competitors could handle, as they were seen tripping into suits, bobbling wax, and stubbing toes, just trying to get to the nearest free lineup quick enough.

Performer of the day: This one has to be a split between eleven-year old Carrisa Moore and Bethany Hamilton, who both shine well beyond the status quo. Carrisa is yet to become an official open “woman”, yet she outshined ‘em all on Saturday with a non-stop lip-bash marathon. Bethany Hamilton, as we all know, has only one arm, and yet she makes late drops on four-foot chunky peaks to slash them to shore in the most prestigious amateur final in the nation. Today these two proved themselves far beyond whatever number ends up beside their names.

Competitive Highlight: Great Dane Gudauskas sniffed open men’s gold today like an underdog in heat. When Kilian and TJ Barron wagged their first waves, Dane came in racking solid scores on the backhand attack. Great Dane is a 4.6 GPA student; he doesn’t mess around, doesn’t make stupid mistakes. His kickout from his second score, the 8.0, was like something straight out of {{{Rocky}}} — a full rail, boo-ya through the soup, like he was saying, “How you like them vert snap apples?” And from there paddled back to pole position to watch the “supposed -to -be” open men’s champs grovel for anything they could in the lulled out closing minutes.

Shockers: As Mike Parsons said, “TJ’s the best surfer in this contest, but he also makes the stupidest mistakes.” In his last Nationals, Barron fell apart in both open and explorer finals, catching unwarranted rails and one unnecessary interference, thus shocking all those believers in his unbridled skill. Maybe even more shocking, though, is the mellow attitude with which TJ handles it all, cruising the beach, throwing shakas to his competitors — true island style.

Stay tuned for: Stay tuned to check plenty of this crew in all the new mags and videos for years to come, leading way into all the high class wave zapping. The high voltage, ‘na mean?

Quotable: “Oh? It doesn’t matter? The whole world’s not here or anything, right?” – Oakley team manager, Dino Andino, explaining to a team rider why TJ Barron can’t be bogging in a National’s final.

Quotable: “Hey, I love everyone, but I sure am glad that kid fell” – Super coach Mike “Slams” Lamm during the open boy’s final.– Hagan Kelley

[Check back tomorrow for the complete results to this year's NSSA Nationals.]

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