The Relatively Coldwater Classic

posted by / News / November 3, 2012

Photos: Jimmicane

Kelly with support crew: Belly, Sherm and girlfriend

Kelly with support crew: Belly, Sherm and girlfriend

Honestly, who could Nat be texting? Every friend, family member and fan lined the cliff to show support during his round 1 match up against Kelly.

Honestly, who could Nat be texting? Every friend, family member and fan lined the cliff to show support during his round 1 match up against Kelly.

Michel Bourez takes the fast track down the cliff. One of the few aerials of day 1.

Michel Bourez takes the fast track down the cliff. One of the few aerials of day 1.

Is this the NFL? Wires provided cameras with new perspectives. We applaud and approve.

Is this the NFL? Wires provided cameras with new perspectives. We applaud and approve.

This may be his only backside tube at the lane. Kolohe Andino improvises.

This may be his only backside tube at the lane. Kolohe Andino improvises.

Sage Erickson has been on the mic asking all the important questions. Ain't she a sweetie?

Sage Erickson has been on the mic asking all the important questions. Ain't she a sweetie?


 

In 2006, Santa Cruz and Huntington Beach went toe to toe in a court of law. The judicial branch of the USA had to decipher which town rightfully deserved the title “Surf City, USA.” And after a gritty battle, they awarded HB with the kooky moniker. It was fitting. And as I stood on the cliff at Steamer Lane on the morning of the first day, I saw weak lines crawling in through a gray sea. I saw cutbacks. And floaters and check-turns. And cutbacks. I thought, well, this might as well be Huntington Beach.

Then the contest was put on a high tide hold for a few hours. And when heats resumed, I didn’t think this might as well be Huntington Beach. I still saw cutbacks. But I also saw airs and lips blasted to gray Pacific graves. Surfing was alive again. And while the opening day of the Coldwater Classic was mostly lukewarm, there were moments of rolling boils minced throughout. Nat Young beat Kelly Slater. Gabriel Medina went left. And at the end of the day, I stood and watched the sunset. And I was glad that there was no Ruby’s Diner at the tip of the point at Steamer Lane.

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  • Ben

    These waves are not dream tour worthy. Remove JBay and replace with Steamers? Please.

  • poop in your pants

    You will say something different when you see it on Sunday night!

  • Condog

    What steamer lane makes up for in quality it lacks big time in quality. No wave in sc is even close to being best wave in Cali, so this stop is just not wct worthy.

  • Condog

    Woops, supposed to read…what steamer lane makes up for in quantity it lacks in quality, but im sure most folks who have surfed the lane figured that one out. Oh yeah, probably the the poorest stop on tour for babes too…they will, however, spread quite easily, just not world tour worthy though.

  • mikey

    lane can be pretty damn close to world class when the sandbar is right, happened last year for a little bit, and the year before it was around for months. then again its really only “world class” for an hour or so but place gets hollow

  • Ben

    I’ve got a “relatively cold” for you: Dusty Payne does an air better than any other this year and is denied a chance to advance so that the ASP can have its pipe showdown. Utter Bullshit.

  • dgb

    Brad Gerlach agrees with Ben.

  • Ben

    Here’s another relatively cold tidbit: While we’re waiting for these fat runners to become rideable, Ocean Beach is overhead, offshore, and becoming more hollow by the moment….

  • Kaipo Gomes

    Ben, 60 Minutes called, they want their conspiracy theory back. The Dusty air in the final seconds was hardly BS. Don’t know if you will be able to see beyond your bias but he was correctly scored. It is obvious how you would have scored it. Kelly beat him fair and square. The Dusty air was nowhere near the air Kelly did at Bells. Go back and look at them both to get some perspective.
    On a SURFING note what will the “ING” crew ever do now that Kolohe Andino, Julian Wilson have both gone down in flames???? Long live the power and rail of Parko with the world’s best style. Kolohe is in trouble heading into Pipe and will have to rely on the Injury Wildcard to make the World Tour next year. What happened to the Hype? For comparison look to John John and Medina in the same age group who both had nowhere near the hype that Kolohe had. Nike is a 4-letter word. Remember that.

  • Ben

    No conspiracy theory Kaipo, just a severely underscored air (based on how judges had scored similar quality airs in the same contest). IMO Kelly’s surfing was insane, e.g. his two turns on his 8.5 were fvckin mental. A little consistency would be nice is all, especially with titles on the line. BTW, I agree 100% that the Kolohe machine is way, way overhyped. I for one am a major fan of the Parko school as well.

  • Mik

    Medina’s rotation was heavier because he landed on the wave face with no hesitation, and he got a 9 —so on that scale Dusty got a fair score. And… Kelly’s roundhouses were super critical… So it is what it is. Also, the Lane is fickle compared to J Bay? Fair enough… But if you know how to surf it, there are lots of workable walls when you’re taking off deep on the Point, at medium and low tide, and then you get the full speed and power. Far far more power than Lowers. And I havent even seen anyone take off back there this contest.

    Actually, the section they’re surfing is RARELY ever surfed. It’s very unusual.

    If they want a long wave, they should move the contest to the Ranch, or Rincon. OB is too much fucking work, with too little reward, and too fickle. The WCT guys create amazing waves from their energy, so the SF contest was good last year… But the Lane has produced some amazing surf for the CWC some years, so stop the dissing.

    Leave it to the WCT surfers. If they enjoy it, come back, if not move it. O’Neill will make a wise decision. That’s a core company.

  • Locdout

    Beat it, trannies

  • Dirt

    I don’t think the judges should be throwing down 9 plus scores for a single air, not at a point break. A beachie maybe, but not at a point. Good point break surfing is about linking turns and combos. Dusty prob souldn’t get the score cause of that, sick air though!!! If the situation were reversed and Kelly needed the score, he woulda got it. And it shits me to tears btw.