Can Matty Wilkinson Keep The Yellow Jersey Following J-Bay?
The Numerical Truth.
The numbers get confusing. There are too many points and possible end results. Last year, when the title race came down to the Pipe Master’s the World Surf League released a program to help sort out the potential outcomes based off each surfer’s prospective finished place–it was puzzling. Not that their algorithm didn’t work, it’s just the scores of five or six contenders finishing in 25th (500 points), 13th (1,750), 9th (4,000), 5th (5,200), 3rd (6,500), 2nd (8,000) and 1st (10,000) piece together like forgotten padlock combinations.
Matty Wilko’s been wearing the yellow singlet since the first event at Snapper and after tallying 20,000 points with his win at Bells, until J-Bay nobody’s been close to taking the Jeep Leader title. Wilko exited Jeffreys in round three, sliced down by Alejo Muniz and his cushy, almost 10,000 point tires are deflating. After the finalists are decided in South Africa, Mr Wilkinson will still be the owner of the yellow jersey, but without security. And, the back half of the tour has never fared well for Matt. Throughout his career, in the last four events, 25th and 13th place finishes have been the norm. However, he’s a had a cracker of a season and counting him out now would be ill-advised.
Matt has 34,250 points following this event. Right now, John Florence and Gabriel Medina are next in line to usurp the yellow jersey. To put into perspective: if Gabs takes back to back first place finishes he will have 34,000 points, a mere 250 behind Wilko. A second or third place finish for Gabs will put him at 32,000 or 30,500, assuming he makes it through his quarterfinal heat with Julian Wilson–last year’s J-Bay finalist. Mr Florence, at the moment, is the only surfer with a secure semifinal finish. If he wins J-Bay he will have 33,900 points–trailing Wilko by 350. Second or third place finishes result in 31,900 or 30,400 points for John after the event. This is not taking in account the two throwaway events at the end of the year.
Looking at the top six, right now, and removing their two lowest results (at this point in the season), the title contenders look like this:
*J-Bay results included, and potential results for John and Gabs*
1. Matt Wilko: 32,000 (25th at Rio, 13th at J-Bay)
2/3. Gabriel Medina: first: 30,500, second: 28,750, third: 27,000, fifth: 25,700 (13th at Snapper, 13th at Bells)
2/3. JJF: first: 30,400, second: 28,400, third: 26,900 (13th at Bells, 13th at Margies)
4. Adriano de Souza: 20,900–round five exit at J-Bay (13th at Bells, 13th at Margies)
5. Italo Ferriera: 18,750–third round exit at J-Bay (13th Snapper, 13th Fiji)
6. Sebastian Zietz: 17,500 (13th at Bells, 25th at Fiji)
There are still five stops to go but, with the two throwaways in mind, John or Gabs (depending on their finishes this event) are sitting in second and third post J-Bay and Wilko will remain the Jeep Leader.
Full results revealed in 24 hours.
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