Words: Travis Ferre
All Photos and Captions: Jimmicane
Here’s what you’ve missed: Freddy P went John Mcenroe after beating Owen Wright in Round one. Pat Gudauskas went career. Gabriel Medina won the GromSearch final. Dane and Dusty came over to our place. Kolohe Andino got barreled at Jan Juc. The Gudauskas’ took us on a surf safari. A bunch of people threw parties for Easter. We napped. Then we surfed. Let’s start at the top.
Fred Patacchia, Owen Wright and Drew Courtney paddled out amid enough Avatar (Owen Wright’s new nickname) hyperbole to rival that of the movie itself. Freddy P said what he said (something about the commentators talking about Owen the entire time, see below). No harm. Small foul from the ASP. I gave him a fist pound today and told him he was my hero. I love passion and Johnny Mac and Heineken and Bud Light. His fine from the ASP won’t hurt a bit. It’s all about passion, boys. Fred did what he had to do.
Other exciting action in round one, onshore Bells included Pat Gudauskas, Jay Thompson and Jordy Smith. In early morning light, Pat put on a very modern performance that featured some of the most innovative surfing we saw throughout the entire round and he beat Jordy and “Bottle,” who both put on rather spectacular performances as well. Dane Reynolds was so inspired that he made the walk over to the contest director’s office to put a pitch in to run the whole next round. “They’re not going to get better waves than this at a beachbreak,” he said about the onshore, rather fun-looking Bells beach bowls. “It looks so fun out there.” It was all to no avail. He then tried to walk into the Michael Peterson Grandstand where they serve delicious egg sandwiches and was rejected by security. Your “All Access” VIP card doesn’t get you everywhere at Bells. Dane and I talked about Sonic Youth for the rest of the day.
After the men finished the six remaining heats of round one, the contest went into a few other events, including the world finals for the Rip Curl GromSearch, which pitted two rising 16-year-olds against each other in Kolohe Andino and Gabriel Medina. Gabriel took it out with some great surfing. Kolohe ripped as well, but his waves didn’t really allow him the scores he needed. “I’m just glad I surfed well,” Andino said after. “I’m fine with how I surfed, waves just didn’t keep giving me the potential I needed.” Kolohe comforted himself with a lot of food at McDonald’s and some hangout time with his heroes, Dane Reynolds and Dusty Payne. He also managed to get barreled at the world’s worst beachbreak: Jan Juc. Kill your Idols.
Today, after they called a lay day (something most people weren’t prepared for), we went on surf safari with the Gudauaskas brothers Pat and Tanner. We surfed a small, glassy beachbreak under the most pleasant climate the world’s ever seen: 71 degrees and sunny. Glassy and sorta playful. An interesting conversation arose when Kolohe Andino kicked out of a wave and said, “Sometimes I don’t’ even know what to do on a wave.” This is a new problem. The types of maneuvers these young kids do now require thought and preparation — grabs like the stalefish are so unnatural that they require one to mentally plan ahead for them. You’re no longer able to take off and “feel it” on every wave. “A lot of these grabs are so unnatural that it takes premeditated ‘want-to’ to get there,” Tanner added. It takes a hope and a prayer, a thought and an execution — whereas, say, when Tom Curren stood up on his first wave at J-Bay, you could tell it was all feeling. It was spontaneous flow and form. Who’s to say what’s harder, or more enjoyable? I’m sure some commenters will love to talk about how dumb we are, tricks being for kids and all that, but it’s an interesting shift in surfing to think that some maneuvers need one to almost work out an equation before taking off. I call it innovation. Feel free to call it something else.
Speaking of Tom Curren, he and Occy squared off for their Clash of the Icons heat as well. After watching the piece prior to the heat on the big screen, featuring old footage of Tom and Occy at Bells, there’s no way one wouldn’t be into watching this duel. The mushy rights translated into a victory for Tom, who has obviously benefitted from the fact that he’s been surfing with his kids a lot more now that they’re older and surfing amazingly themselves. He had a little more juice than Occy and took out the win.
Other than that, it’s been rather quiet over here. Easter egg hunts and little beachbreak sessions. But today there is a very high chance (like 100%) that we’ll be surfing at a spot called 13th Beach very soon. Keep checking out http://live.ripcurl.com/?bellshome for live action.
For more coverage visit: http://superspectacularadventures.com/?p=88303620