Surfer magazine’s Surfer Poll awards reveal some predictable results, some surprises

The 42nd annual Surfer Poll award show went off Thursday night at the North Shore’s Turtle Bay resort on Oahu. Not a ton of surprises: Kelly Slater took top honors for the 18th time, Dane Reynolds and Dear Suburbia took top honors in Best Performance and Movie of the Year, respectively.

Making their debuts on the surfer of the year list were tour rookies John John Florence and Gabe Medina; John John finished second, and Medina finished fourth. Gabe is the first Brazilian surfer to crack the top 10, and John John can attribute his impressive position at No. 2 behind Slater to his meteoric rise through the World Tour rankings during his rookie year.

Perhaps the biggest surprise that actually may not be all that surprising is the sad realization that many of us are very, very shallow people. Keep in mind that the Surfer Poll rankings for male and female are voted upon by you, the readers.

Despite a lack of competitive success over the past couple seasons, having missed the cutoff for the ladies World Tour, the gorgeous Alana Blanchard has steadily crawled up the female rankings to No. 2, just behind world champ Steph Gilmore. Her recipe for commercial success is very simple. A highly trafficked Instagram account featuring shots of Alana and her hot friends prancing around in G-strings, along with brand new web series featuring, you guessed it, Alana and her hot friends prancing around in G-strings.

All the while, title contenders such as Sally Fitzgibbons (second) and Carissa Moore (third), have been relegated to fourth and fifth in the rankings.

To be fair, Alana has re-qualified for next year’s ladies tour, so she will have a great shot at shoving my foot directly into my mouth and go for a title, but only time will tell. Until then, we can look forward to more softcore webisodes!

Photo of Alana courtesy Grant Ellis/Surfer Mag


Top 10 Men
1. Kelly Slater
2. John John Florence
3. Dane Reynolds
4. Gabriel Medina
5. Mick Fanning
6. Joel Parkinson
7. Julian Wilson
8. Taj Burow
9. Jordy Smith
10. Owen Wright

Top 5 Women
1. Steph Gilmore
2. Alana Blanchard
3. Coco Ho
4. Carissa Moore
5. Sally Fitzgibbons

AI Breakthrough Performer Presented by New Era
Gabriel Medina

Movie of the Year
“Dear Suburbia” by Kai Neville

Best Performance
Dane Reynolds, “Dear Suburbia”

Heavy Water
Shane Dorian

Best Barrel
Reef McIntosh, “Fiji Freight Trains”

Worst Wipeout
Mark Mathews, “Fighting Fear”

Short of the Year
“Electric Blue Heaven,” by Joe G

Agent of Change
Jack Shimko and Paddle2Live