Bruce Irons On The Pipe Masters, Triple Crown And The North Shore Right Now
Don’t call it a comeback.
In a magnificent house on Sunset Beach, Bruce Irons is staying in the top room; it peers down upon the pool and break. The window wraps 180 degrees, and through gaps in palms you can see past Rocky Point to and north of Sunset. On a decorate sofa, Bruce and I talk the North Shore right now, the Pipe Masters’ wildcard and how it feels to surf all three events of the Triple Crown for the first time in a near decade. And at the moment for Bruce, it’s all good – judging by the room we’re sitting in, how could it not?
“What have we been doing?” he asks. “Surfing.”
“I was staying at the RVCA house at Off The Wall and now I’m staying here at the Weedmaps house,” he says. “Axel [Irons] had his birthday a few days ago; that was cool. I’ve just been chilling, and eating good food.” By good food, he’s referring to the organic, non-GMO breakfasts and dinners served up at the Weedmaps pad. What they have going on over there is different than any other house on the North Shore, but that’s a story for a different day. “The North Shore this time of year is just a big clubhouse,” Bruce continues. “You just hang from house to house, group to group, get in where you fit in and enjoy.”
Mr Irons is living easy his room with a view.
With early exits from the first two stops on the Triple Crown, Bruce is looking to return to competitive form at the Pipe Masters. “In my head it’s always going to be greater and better than I did,” he says. “I’m bummed out on my performance. So, it’s back to the drawing board. I’m going to do the Pipe Masters, then next year I’ll be back in the Triple Crown. Hopefully, I’ll have a different start. But as long as I’m in Hawaii this time of year and the contest are here I want to be surfing in all the events.”
Matt Banting is currently on the disabled list and Bruce has been awarded the Pipe Masters wildcard. Which after last year’s hashtag and the rally cry behind putting him in the event in memory of Andy, it’s a relief. Bruce wasn’t taking any chances this year, so he surfed enough QS events to qualify for the Triple Crown and was looking to surf the trials if need be. “That was just kind of luck working in my favour,” he says. “I got that position through Billabong; the other wildcard went to Frederico Morais, the guy that’s leading the Triple Crown. That’s how it’s always been. Matt Banting unfortunately got injured and fortunately for me, I got his spot. I’m stoked to be straight in the event but if I had to do the trials I’d still be stoked. I’m just happy to be a part of the Pipe Masters one way or the other.”
“I haven’t looked much at the forecast,” he continues. “But I hear waves are coming. I don’t want to think too much about it or overhype it – a lot of people seem to do that. I’m just trying to win heats.”
I ask Bruce if there’s anyone he’s looking forward to surfing against. “I don’t really care to tell you the truth,” he says. “A heats a heat. It doesn’t matter who you are; I want to beat you, and you want to beat me. It could be John John or Joe Shmo; there’s no difference. It will be nice to surf against the top dogs and take them out though,” he laughs. “But at the end, it doesn’t matter how you get there or who you beat, as long as you get that big W.”
And after much discussion in 2015 regarding a BI ‘comeback’… “What comeback?” he quips. “People can call it whatever they want, but I didn’t go anywhere. I’m just happy to hear people are stoked about me surfing more. It feels good. It’s better to be talked about than not talked about, whether it’s good or bad. I just love this time of year, being on the North Shore and staying above the ocean. It’s what I look forward to all summer.”
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