Weight: 155 lbs.
Hometown: Cocoa Beach, Florida
Sponsors: Quiksilver, DVS, Electric, Quiet Flight, Nixon
You’d think that with four ESA titles and one NSSA East Coast title, Cocoa Beach’s David Awbrey wouldn’t have anything to prove. But when you come up in Slaterville regularly trading punches with young dynamos like Eric Taylor, Tommy O’Brien, Alek Parker, and the Jones brothers, people forget quickly, and your success is measured only by what you’ve done lately. Known throughout the East Coast surf community as absurdly fluid and precise
in the most miserable contest surf, Awbrey is actually one of the most feared draws of the bunch come comp time. Obviously, he’ll dig his heels into as many East Coast WQS events as possible in 2004, this being his last season as a competing amateur. But first, he has a little stepping up to do.
“The only way you can get good surfing against the guys around here is to do all of the contests that you can—NSSA, ESA, ‘QSs,” he admits. “But I’ve done so many for so long, I started to get burned out on them. My main focus now is to go to Hawai’i this winter and get into bigger waves. I want to prove I’m not just good in small waves.” Prove he’s not just good in small waves? That’s ironic, the last multiple ESA champion from Cocoa Beach who said that won a world title that same year. He then went on to win five more. Maybe you’ve heard of him.—Matt Pruett/Eastern Surf Magazine[IMAGE 2]
Weight: 140 lbs.
Hometown: Snapper Rocks, Gold Coast, Australia
Sponsors: Volcom, Brothers Neilsen Surfboards, Von Zipper eyewear
Shaun Harrington, second born in the Harrington clan, is pretty mellow and “pulls a heap of chicks ’cause the f—ker’s got blond hair,” reckons brother Dean. Shaun is a Snapper local, he hangs there, drinks grog there, and tears the place to bits with his smooth, top to bottom surfing.
“Hanging at Snapper is sick,” reckons Shaun. “All the boys write each other off and there are always (girls) about. Good thing is, none of the boys can have a dig ’cause they’re all f—kin’ married. It’s so funny. Just surfing and hanging out at Snapper is good ’cause I get to surf with the best guys in the world. It’s such a good opportunity for me to get better at my surfing and also to smash heaps of chicks ’cause so many groupies sniff about at Snapper” (laughing).
Shaun’s stories are pretty crook (crazy). There was a time at Avoca when the young clown started putting cigarettes out on his tongue. I was razzled by these stories, so I had to ask Parko, could these tales be true: “Half the shit the Harringtons say you wouldn’t believe, they f—kin’ speak shit out their ass.” I guess the talk is all false then. Ah well, cool thing is the kid still rips the famed Superbank to bits, is hanging out with the best in the world, and has a super-competitive brother to push him as far as the sport can take him.—Thomas Herschell
Weight: 190 lbs.
Hometown: Kailua-Kona, Hawai’i
Sponsors: Ruca, Vezix, F.A.B., Sunlights Hawai’i, G-Force surfboards
According to friends Mike Dodd and Jason Shibata, C.J. Kanuha is “an ogre, a man-child.” With hands the size of giant coconuts, this Big Island boy is not lacking in the size department. While some surfers can’t cope with being large, C.J.’s physical size translates smoothly into his surfing by means of giant power gouges and fin-busting slashes.
Living on a small farm on the Kona side of Hawai’i, C.J.’s a laid-back guy. However, thanks to influence from Shane Dorian, his workout partner, and Conan Hayes, his surf buddy, he has the drive and determination necessary to be a succcessful pro surfer. And although he may not look it, being 50 percent pure Hawai’ian won’t hurt his cause, either.
C.J.’s super pumped and looking forward to the winter surf season—he plans on hopping over to O’ahu to enter the Xcel Sunset contest as a way to test his skills against the best. With solid support and motivation from Shane and Conan, look for C.J. to follow in the footsteps of great Big Island surfers.—Justin Cote