2013 Volcom Pipe Pro: Day 1 Highlights
After a few "lei days" here on the North Shore of Oahu, the Volcom Pipe Pro (a $130,000 WQS 5* event) kicked off in draining 4-6 foot barrels (with the occasional 8-footer) at the Banzai. With a growing West/Northwest swell conditions were ideal for both Pipe and Backdoor.
Day 1 standouts included Makua Rothman, JD Irons, Kawai Lindo, and 16-year old Oahu phenom Josh Moniz. Makua Rothman used both Backdoor and Pipe to win his heat, but had some extra motivation, "Bra, I couldn't let my little brother Koa do better than me," he said. His brother Koa advanced through the round of 112 battle, but Makua had the highest heat score of the morning with 16.86 points. Young Josh Moniz was equally as stoked after beating veterans Sean Moody, Roy Powers, and Maui's Makena Elogram. His Dad, Tony, was a big time pro in the 80s and apparently the apple hasn't fallen far from the tree. Watch out for this kid in the future...
JD Irons (cousin to Andy and Bruce Irons) won the sponsor wildcard round with a scrappy performance, beating out Pipeline locals Dave Wassel, Mark Healey, Gavin Beschen, Tom Dosland, and Kawai Lindo. Speaking of Kawai, the lanky goofyfooter from Kauai had the wave of the day with an eight-foot bomb that barfed him out into the channel to the cheers of the beach and team houses. For his efforts, Kawai netted $1,000 from Electric for the "Electric 10-Point Ride." Unfortunately for Kawai, his 10-pointer wasn't enough to get through, and JD will be pitted against the higher-ranked seeds when in the next round.
With the higher seeds entering the draw and a quickly building swell, tomorrow figures to be an epic day of competition here at Pipeline.
ASP Press Release: Steely Day At Pipeline Signals Start Of Volcom Pipe Pro
North Shore, Oahu, HAWAII (Jan. 31, 2013) — Pipeline was not friendly today with its gray skies, an unusually chilling wind, and a gnarly lineup of shifty waves. There were the occasional flashes of blue, but it was the kind of day that could only appeal to warriors of the $130,000 Volcom Pipe Pro, and they had no hesitation getting things rolling after four days of waiting for a start. The Volcom Pipe Pro is an ASP 5-star event that runs through February 7.
Conditions were temperamental, ranging from head high to more than double-overhead, and delivered everything from mean wipeouts to a perfect 10 tube ride. Wave selection was critical and more than a few athletes struggled to find their two mandatory scores.
Waialua’s Kawai Lindo experienced both sides of Pipeline’s hand today, finding the only $1,000 “Electric Perfect 10” score of the day for a barrel that reeled off flawlessly. But at the end of his battle for a wildcard in a stacked heat that included Mark Healey (HI), Dave Wassel (HI), and JD Irons (HI), it still wouldn’t be enough. Kauai’s JD Irons trumped him to move on.
North Shore local Makuakai Rothman posted the highest two-wave heat score of the day: 16.86 points out of 20 (8.93, 7.93). His backhand tube riding was brilliant and delivered a satisfying return to the water after a recent torn calf muscle that had him couch-ridden.
“It felt great, actually,” said Rothman. “It was a pretty heavy tear, blew it up, but no problem today so I’m heading home to rest up.” Rothman’s younger brother Koa also advanced today. Ex-pat Australian Anthony Walsh first surfed here at the Pipeline more than a decade ago, at the age of 16. He says he was hooked from that day on and is now married to a local girl and surfs Pipe whenever he can. His experience showed today and gave him an early round win.
“There’s definitely good ones out there, there are tens,” said Walsh “But with this wind, the backwash and a rising swell, it’s definitely tricky. Putting in time out there definitely helps with knowing where to sit when it’s like this or bigger.” Other top scorers today included JD Irons (Kauai) – 14.93 (9.0, 7.93), Nic Von Rupp (Germany) – who came close to an Electric Perfect 10 with a needle-threading tube ride of 9.93 points, and a similarly satisfying grab-rail backside tube for Brazilian Sidney Guimaraes that saw him throw the biggest double-fisted pump of the contest so far (8.0).
With waves still rising late into tonight, organizers will reconvene at 7am tomorrow morning for a call on whether competition will resume. Seven days of the holding period remain, with three days of surfing remaining. Surfline.com reports that Pipe will be maxed out Friday morning with some sets washing through, but gradually becoming more manageable through the day as the swell eases.
Top seeds will enter the draw in the Round of 64 on the next day of competition: Kolohe Andino (Ca., USA), John John Florence (HI), Tanner Gudauskas (Ca., USA), Nat Young (Ca., USA), Jamie O’Brien (HI), Alex Gray (Ca., USA) & Josh Kerr (AUS).
Round 112 Trials
H1: Stephen Koehne (HI); Danny Fuller (HI); Ha’a Aikau (HI); Kaupena Miranda (HI); Sai Smiley (HI); Solomon Ortiz (HI)
Round of 112:
(1st & 2nd advance. 3rd=97th; 4th=105th)
H1: Kamalei Woolsey-Alexander (HI); Robert Patterson (HI); Luke Shepardson (HI); Kalani David (HI)
H2: Mikey Bruneau (HI); Kahea Hart (HI); Chris Foster (HI); Ezra Sitt (HI)
H3: Myles Padaca (HI); Reef McIntosh (HI); Eli Olson (HI); Dylan Kowalski (HI)
H4: Pancho Sullivan (HI); Koa Rothman (HI); Derek Ho (HI); Jason Shibata (HI)
H5: Danny Fuller (HI); Jeremy Johnston (HI); Gregg Nakamura (HI); Ulualoha Napeahi (HI)
H6: Makuakai Rothman (HI); Charlie Carroll (HI); Flynn Novak (HI); Nathan Carvalho (HI)
H7: Marcus Hickman (HI); Stephen Koehne (HI); Love Hodel (HI); Jonah Morgan (HI)
H8: Joshua Moniz (HI); Sean Moody (HI); Makana Eleogram (HI); Roy Powers (HI)
Round of 96:
(1st & 2nd advance. 3rd=65th; 4th=81st)
H1: Kai Barger (HI); Joel Centeio (HI); Kamalei Woolsey-Alexander (HI); Kevin Sullivan (HI)
H2: Eala Stewart (HI); Makai McNamara (HI); Billy Kemper (HI); Robert Patterson (HI)
H3: Yujiro Tsuji (JPN); Shane Beschen (HI); Mikey Bruneau (HI); Guillermo Satt (CHL)
H4: Kahea Hart (HI); Bruce Irons (HI); Manuel Selman (CHL); Garrett Parkes (AUS)
H5: Anthony Walsh (AUS); Masatoshi Ohno (Japan); Carlos Munoz (CRI); Myles Padaca (HI)
H6: Miguel Tudela (PER); Reef McIntosh (HI); Alex Smith (HI); Jano Belo (BRA)
H7: Nic Von Rupp (Germany); Pancho Sullivan (HI); Bino Lopes (BRA); Chase Wilson (USA)
H8: Sidney Guimaraes (BRA); Koa Rothman (HI); Ian Gouveia (BRA); Kiron Jabour (HI)
Watch the Volcom Pipe Pro LIVE at www.volcompipepro.com
Volcom is partnering with ESPN, the worldwide leader in sports, to bring the Volcom Pipe Pro and competitive surfing to a whole new audience. In addition to the traditional live broadcast, ESPN will be streaming the contest live in HD on ESPN3.com. This partnership will mark the first time that ESPN has streamed a live ASP surfing event.
In line with Volcom’s New Future commitment, the event will again run according to the green guidelines that SustainableSurf.org and ASP North America have partnered on to help reduce the environmental impact of all contests. This will be Volcom’s second deep blue surfing event™ and in line with the guidelines, waste, energy, community support, climate change and transportation will be target categories for sustainability initiatives.