Kelly Slater’s Not Going To Out Air Filipe Toledo
“He’s gonna smoke 99 percent of guys he surfs against in waves like this.” – Mr Slater.
Today kicked off to the worst surf we’ve seen thus far (still fun, if it were your locale, you’d be quick to get wet). A gloomy cotton ball hung over the coast and refused the sun’s access to the sand. It’s been a stressful week, after the passing of David “Woody” Wood, Hawaiian surfer, Rory Parker took his life last night; the competitors have been sending their hearts out to the deceased’s loved ones.
In round five, Kolohe Andino suffered a loss to Kelly Slater. This was Kolohe’s best finish at Lowers in his CT career. Kolohe went to the lefts, knowing that with the dying swell, they’d have a steeper bowl to work. He put up an early eight (which Kelly answered back with a few blow tail carves for an 8.60) and in the last two minutes, he needed a 6.44. Brother took a left that flattened out; despite his effort and about eight backhand cuts, only one turn had the lip that could gift a high score. He finished just short with a six-point ride.
Brett Simpson, whose couple air reverses and knowledgeable flow paired nicely with the morning’s cleaner walls and sent him into quarterfinals with a win over Michel Bourez. The local wildcard found himself against Jordy Smith. He couldn’t ride his heat of this event; Jordy saw his mid-range scores and responded with lead-footed turns and two seven-point rides. Simpo left the event with a bit of cash and a beaming demeanor.
Filipe Toledo and Kelly Slater matched up for the second time this event. And the results were similar to their round one heat (except Filipe took to the sky). Kelly’s been in form throughout this event, but the King’s not going to out air the young Brazilian. “You can’t give Filipe an inch out here,” Kelly said after his loss. “He’s the most dangerous guy; if you can get past him, you feel like you’ve won the event. He’s gonna smoke 99 percent of guys he surfs against in waves like this.” Filipe put on an air show laced with hard cuts and flow. His two nines surpassed Kelly’s seven and eight point rides.
Tanner Gudang’s telling a local wildcard story similar to Jay Davies at Margaret River last year but unlike Jay, Tanner didn’t get shut down in the quarters. So far he’s tallied up a perfect ten, upset Gabriel Medina (in controversy), iced Stuart Kennedy (who has a baby due any day now and is on his way home) with an 8.9 and a 6.23 and will be surfing on finals day against Joel Parkinson.
“This week’s been magic for me,” said Tanner after his heat. “I feel really good energy off the beach and in the water. I keep feeling like every heat that I surf is my only opportunity, and then I’ll be back on the QS. After falling off the tour, it’s taken me a while to get my steam back, and now I feel vindicated that I still can surf at this level. I’m just trying to prove my worth to the other surfers on tour.”
Alex! You almost had it… The final heat of the day featured Mr Ribeiro, who just secured his best finish of the year, and Joel Parkinson. Before Lowers Alex had won one heat, this event he’s broken out and proved how he got on tour in the first place. Alex held the lead up until the four-minute mark, then Parko struck the rookie down with an 8.27.
There’s a hurricane spinning south of the border at the moment, and it’s set to hit Southern California’s fave skatepark come Wednesday. However, the waves will remain contestable tomorrow and we will have to wait for the call.
Round Five Results:
Heat 1: Brett Simpson 15.00 def. Michel Bourez 8.46
Heat 2: Kelly Slater 14.43 def. Kolohe Andino 14.07
Heat 3: Stuart Kennedy 15.67 def. Josh Kerr 12.64
Heat 4: Joel Parkinson 13.77 def. Jadson Andre 12.84
QF 1: Jordy Smith 14.87 def.. Brett Simpson 10.43
QF 2: Filipe Toledo 18.37 def. Kelly Slater 15.60
QF 3: Tanner Gudauskas 15.13 def. Stuart Kennedy 9.17
QF 4: Joel Parkinson 14.77 def. Alex Ribeiro 12.40
SF 1: Jordy Smith (ZAF) vs. Filipe Toledo (BRA)
SF 2: Tanner Gudauskas (USA) vs. Joel Parkinson (AUS)
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