After over a week on the couch with Lake Tahiti conditions plaguing one of the most exciting venues on tour, a pulse of swell finally got round 3 and 4 in the water–and the biggest news of the day was Brazilian trials winner Ricardo Dos Santos pulling off a last second victory over Kelly Slater. Santos threaded a deep tube as time expired in heat 6, netting a near perfect 9.87 to eliminate the defending event champ.
The massive upset is great news for the world title hopefuls, as a good result in Tahiti after his win in Fiji would have put Kelly in the familiar driver’s seat. Coupled with his injury absence in Brazil, this will be Kelly’s second throwaway result, meaning he will have no cushion for the remainder of the year.
Other than Adriano de Souza and Josh Kerr, who both lost today, everyone in the leader’s pack will be improving his standing against the great one.
The building swell is forecasted to peak over night and offer its biggest surf in the first half of the day tomorrow, where the event will finish on the final day of the waiting period.