Mick Fanning helps grom; Is the people's champ
Photo by Trevor Moran
Mick Fanning, as of two days ago, is the People’s Champ! Here’s a brief overview of what went down during a recent Pipe session: Grom Tyler Gunter tried to paddle out a coupla times, and after eventually getting out, wore a cleanup set and lost his board. Mick, the people’s champ, gave Tyler his board to get to the beach on, and swam in. Which is every bit as excellent as it sounds. Here’s a more detailed breakdown from Trevor Moran, who was on the beach when it happened (you’ll also see his photo above):
"As far as what happened, take my view with a grain of salt as I’m watching far away as the situation as it unfolded,” says Trev. “It was a pretty massive morning with plenty of sets washing through from third reef. Julian Wilson, Michel Bourez, and countless others snapped boards. As the swell started to drop off, along came a few groms. Tyler Gunter was one of the first to try getting out and was swiftly denied his first and, I think, second try. Third time’s a charm, as he was one of only two or three of his 10-deep posse to make it out. He wasn’t out there long before sets started stacking and washing through, cleaning up everyone in the lineup. I saw someone clearly other than Mick climbing onto Mick’s step-up board (it was Tyler), while Mick himself was swimming towards the channel. Tyler quickly stroked towards the beach, wearing a few more waves on the head as he did. Meanwhile, Mick was trying to time the sets to get through the impact zone which was more unruly than usual thanks to a sandbar which has formed at Gums. He took some sketchy waves on the head too, and put up an impressive fight against the outgoing rip, before casually walking up the beach. A handshake, pat on the back, and a few quick words and laughs were exchanged between Tyler and Mick, and they both headed back to their respective houses for a breather. It seemed like the crowd didn’t know what the hell was going on, almost stunned when they saw Mick collecting his board, no fanfare or autographs. A few hours later, Tyler was back in the lineup.”
Name one other man on the world tour, or even the QS, who’d do such a thing. That’s all the right stuff, Mr Fanning.