Dylan Goodale woke up on his nineteenth birthday in the state of California awaiting a quarterfinals match-up with elders Asher Nolan, Teddy Navarro, and Anthony Petruso. A distinct difference from his shores of Kauai—shores which lie past the Island of Catalina, which was clear as a bell this Sunday in Huntington Beach for the final day of the Vans Pier Classic.
The dirty-blonde Kauai regularfoot came out swinging for the fences from the start of the event. When others were conservatively putting their boards on rail for safe turns, Goodale was trouncing them by consistently sticking blow-tails and air reverses with a determination. "My main focus was the Pro Junior event," Dylan said. "So in the 'QS event I was just trying to get as far as I could and have fun."
On Saturday Dylan had lost out in the Ezekiel Pro Junior, leaving his focus solely on the 'QS side of things. "After that I just thought 'go big,' that's what the judges were rewarding," Dylan remarked. And go big he did—from the Round of 64 on he won every single heat he surfed in the 'QS event. Not an easy feat for anyone, let alone a kid trying to get his seeding on the map in the Pro Junior Series.
Another kid who went big this weekend was San Clemente's Kolohe Andino in the Ezekiel Pro Junior event. In his three heats on Sunday he didn't have a total heat score under 16.40. He continually posted 8's and above with his knifey carves, clean air reverses, and speedy snaps. The capper for Andino came in the bar-raising final against Andrew Doheny, Tyler Newton, and Luke Davis.
Luke Davis had started the heat off like a madman, and though it was still early, it appeared to be his to lose. Kolohe answered back on an ankle high wave with as clean of an air reverse one could ever pull, racking in an 8.65, and then following it up with a 7.25 to take the lead. Luke sounded right back though with his own air reverse, more elevated and with more speed, but it only garnered an 8.40.
Doheny also got into the mix with the highest score of the final: a 9.5 in which he threw three full-rail turns, the most powerful turns of the final. With Kolohe looking for a score to steal the lead back from Luke he paddled towards Machado's peak and roped one in. He started with another lightning quick air reverse on the outside (stuck cleanly), and check turned his way to the inside reform where he unloaded another flawless air 3 followed by a fist pump of gratification. The score came in at 9.3 and gave Kolohe his first ASP Pro Junior victory. "It feels good to get that monkey off my back," he stated.
Goodale also dropped the monkey that has been on his back the last four years, this being his first win since he was fifteen. But it didn't come easy for him in the final against seasoned veterans Micah Byrne, Peter Mel, and Jason 'Ratboy' Collins. Though Dylan jumped out to a quick lead racking in a 7.75 with one big air reverse, local HB boy and 2007 Vans Pier Classic champ Micah Byrne put up the biggest score of the entire event with three distinct power turns and a blast of the end section for a 9.65.
Around the 10-minute mark Dylan Goodale got his opportunity to take the lead back though. He started off with two smooth snaps and capped it with quite possibly the biggest air reverse of the entire event. The result: an 8.55 and a snatching of the lead from HB local boy MB. With two minutes left and no waves of high scoring value having come in since Dylan's 8.55, the Kauai camp in the competitors' area began stirring. As the hooter sounded the Smith brothers (Alex and Koa) met their island brother at the water's edge and carted him to his rightful spot on the podium.
Quite a birthday it was for Mr. Goodale, "the best birthday present I could ask for," he remarked to me. "I don't even know what I'm feeling, it hasn't sunk in yet." In a blossoming Pro Junior career the confidence from this win will go miles for his surfing. What a birthday it was. Congrats Dylan and happy birthday!—Ryan Brower
Vans Pier Classic Final Results:
1 – Dylan Goodale (HAW) 16.30
2 – Micah Byrne (USA) 15.65
3 – Peter Mel (USA) 9.75
4 – Jason Collins (USA) 6.95
Ezekiel Pro Junior Final Results:
1 – Kolohe Andino (USA) 17.95
2 – Luke Davis (USA) 16.90
3 – Andrew Doheny (USA) 16.35
4 – Tyler Newton (HAW) 13.00