E-Lo Picks Up The Mic And Calls it On After Five Day’s Of Deafening Silence - Stab Mag

E-Lo Picks Up The Mic And Calls it On After Five Day’s Of Deafening Silence

The Pipe Masters begins (again) at 8am.

Words by stab

After five days of radio silence from the WSL, following the indefinite suspension of the Billabong Pipeline Masters due to positive COVID tests within the WSL leadership and staff, today a presumably still COVID-suffering Eric Logan picked up the mic to announce heats will hit the water at Pipe tomorrow at 8am. 

The WSL is officially off suspension tomorrow, and before we get into what exactly happened behind the scenes over the last five days, here’s brass tax, and a “potential” schedule for tomorrow: 

Men’s only (women still unconfirmed “officially” for Pipe, but according to all women’s CT surfers we spoke with today it’s gonna happen Friday, which is fucking rad). 

Three Elimination round heats hit the water at 8 am before 40-minute overlapping heats for the entirety of the Round of 32, and ideally three overlapping heats for the round of 16, with no breaks between rounds and a hard stop at 4:20pm (for obvious reasons?). 

The forecast for the morning looks a little wooly, but certainly “contestable” given there’s two days left in the waiting period. Which means it’s going to be a long day. 

So here’s how we got here, and the reason behind the WSL’s silence on almost all platforms over the last five days. There’s no playbook when it comes to local governments and business and unforeseen circumstances during this pandemic, and given the massive hurdles and triggerpoint sensitivities around running events in public at the moment telegraphing your theoretical or hoped-for potential moves only sticks your neck out. Too much confidence in your own ambitious plan, and you’re not taking the pandemic seriously. Raising red flags publicly with local government departments isn’t going to win favors either, and surely we’ve seen how any and all undercooked meat gets thoroughly torn apart by the wolves in the comments section (not to mention a target on their back moving forward into the rest of the year). 

Today, all staff, crew, and individuals with accreditation within the Pipe Masters were tested throughout the morning. All surfers, both men and women CT surfers, arrived at noon for CPR tests which were received this evening. We’re told no tests came back positive amongst surfers. We imagine this played a massive part in their decision to go tomorrow.

The whole 2020 cliche of navigating uncharted territory is a cliche for a reason. Finishing the event(s) was the hoped-for goal. Presenting regular media updates was anything but a priority, and we know from first-hand, off-the-record accounts from multiple sources from every department within the WSL that the last five days have been absolute manic, confusing, and truly unprecedented.

The classic day missed at Pipe and E-Lo’s sickness will continue to be fodder for trolls but there’ll be a Pipe Master in 2020, and that’s what we’re all here for. 


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