Mick Fanning surfs first heat back in round one of Teahupoo
Round One of the Billabong Pro, Tahiti commenced today in inconsistent, shifty surf. Mick Fanning, the shark wrangler, returned to the jersey dressed with prowess in Heat Five. The 2012 event winner advanced himself to round three with a 5.50 and 6.67, leaving Adam Melling and Taumata Puhetini combo’d for the heat’s majority. “It was great to get back […]
Round One of the Billabong Pro, Tahiti commenced today in inconsistent, shifty surf. Mick Fanning, the shark wrangler, returned to the jersey dressed with prowess in Heat Five. The 2012 event winner advanced himself to round three with a 5.50 and 6.67, leaving Adam Melling and Taumata Puhetini combo’d for the heat’s majority. “It was great to get back in the singlet and focus on surfing again,” said Mick. “There’s been so much hype about the incident in J-Bay and so much media attention and I just want to move on. It happened and will be one of those stories when I’m old. It was really tough out there and there weren’t too many opportunities but I lucked out with a five and a six. I feel pretty confident but there’s so much that goes into a World Title. You have to be on at all times and you have to focus on yourself and try and do the right thing at the right time.”
World number three, Julian Wilson, continued his form dishing out the highest single wave score of the day, an 8.33. After J-Bay, the anticipation of Jules and Mick’s return to competition received a lot of chatter. But neither gents showed any signs of being rattled. Sea Bass and Garret Parkes were unable to outscore Jules and will have to scrap their way out of round two. “The wind really went more South in my heat and there weren’t too many opportunities out there,” said Julian. “When the sets come they’re good, there just aren’t that many of them. I really want to put a full year together and I don’t think I’ve done that yet. I look forward to each event and putting on good performances and getting the chance to surf against the best guys.”
11-time world champ and four-time event winner, Kelly Slater, did what he does in Tahiti and advanced into round three. He showed up 12 hours before his heat and posted a 7.83 early after the buzzer. Jadson Andre and Brett Simpson were unable to rack up a solid score and the King reigned supreme. “I slept a lot on the plane and then got all psyched and was up waxing my boards until late,” said Kelly. “I went out and surfed for about an hour and a half before my heat to get familiar with what the sets were doing and the lineup. That one wave lurched and landed on my back. It slammed my face into the water and I thought I lost a tooth. I’m surprised I didn’t hit the bottom.”
Jeep leader Adriano De Souza returned to form in J-Bay but couldn’t get it done in round one of Chopes. He’ll join Michel Bourez in round two elimination. Trials wildcard Bruno Santos lifted Adriano’s lead in the final minutes of the heat and leapfrogs to round three. Bruno is magic out at Chopes, just FYI. He took the cake back in 2008.
Injury replacement and former World Tour competitor Aritz Aranburu handed out free lessons in backside tunnel knifing to Filipe Toledo and rookie Keanu Asing. He slipped into a golden goose, clocked a solid 8.17 in tricky conditions, and will try to keep form in round three. “I thought it would be the best thing to wait for the good ones,” said Aritz. “The waves aren’t hollow enough so I was waiting for the ones that were bending and getting deep into the barrel. I’m really happy to be part of this event. I’m sorry that someone had to get injured for me to be here but now I have a chance and I want to make the most of it.”
Owen Wright, Dusty Payne and Joel Parkinson controlled their heats and advance into round three today, too. Only eight heats were completed in the first day of competition. Hopefully conditions will align for the next few days, but… that may be wishful thinking.
Billabong Pro Tahiti Round 1 Results:
Heat 1: Kelly Slater (USA) 15.10, Jadson Andre (BRA) 8.23, Brett Simpson (USA) 4.70
Heat 2: Owen Wright (AUS) 11.67, Adrian Buchan (AUS) 11.50, C.J. Hobgood (USA) 9.67
Heat 3: Aritz Aranburu (ESP) 13.10, Keanu Asing (HAW) 7.16, Filipe Toledo (BRA) 5.37
Heat 4: Julian Wilson (AUS) 10.66, Sebastian Zietz (HAW) 9.00, Garrett Parkes (AUS) 1.30
Heat 5: Mick Fanning (AUS) 12.17, Adam Melling (AUS) 6.26, Taumata Puhetini (PYF) 1.33
Heat 6: Bruno Santos (BRA) 8.67, Adriano de Souza (BRA) 5.30, Michel Bourez (PYF) 2.44
Heat 7: Dusty Payne (HAW) 10.00, Nat Young (USA) 5.14, Kai Otton (AUS) 1.30
Heat 8: Joel Parkinson (AUS) 10.83, Taj Burrow (AUS) 4.77, Glenn Hall (IRL) 2.96
Upcoming Billabong Pro Tahiti Round 1 Match-Ups:
Heat 9: Josh Kerr (AUS), Matt Wilkinson (AUS), Kolohe Andino (USA)
Heat 10: Italo Ferreira (BRA), Gabriel Medina (BRA), Ricardo Christie (NZL)
Heat 11: Bede Durbidge (AUS), John John Florence (HAW), Fredrick Patacchia (HAW)
Heat 12: Jeremy Flores (FRA), Wiggolly Dantas (BRA), Miguel Pupo (BRA)
How Much Would You Pay For A Session Like This?
A cost-per-vision breakdown of Kian Martin and Tai Buddha's latest strike mission.
Ongoing Dialogue: Jack Freestone And Album’s Matt Parker On How They Get Sparks To Fly
"Nowadays, a standard thruster feels pretty alt to me." -Jack
Davo’s Death Strikes At Surfing’s Core
The underground icon battled demons til the end. His untimely demise is yet another cautionary…
Introducing A Brand New Travel Series (With A Familiar Name)
Watch the first New York episode of Stab & Red Bull's No Contest Off Tour.
Leandro Dora: Pro Surfer, Businessman, Punk Rock Festival Organizer, Spiritual Mentor, And World Title Winning Surf Coach
Meet one of the most beloved and effective individuals in the athlete's zone.
Long Read: An Angel At My Table
From Stab Issue 15, October 2006: Chris Davidson has one more shot at the big…
Watch: Kalani David’s Last Dance
A final surf part from the Hawaiian surf/skate prodigy.
Taylor Steele Won’t Let Surf Filmmaking Die Without a Fight
Movies shown, filmmaking advice, punk rock at the 2022 Solento Surf Festival.
Wait, Are We Going To See Moana Jones In The Olympics At Teahupo’o?
Team USA (women) and Japan (men) should be able to choose anyone they want to…
Donald Brink and Matt Biolos Win Mick Fanning’s Electric Acid Surfboard Test
And we had a party in Oceanside to celebrate.
Kanoa Igarashi and Kirra Pinkerton Answer Call Of Duty, Win Medals Of Honor In 2022 ISA World Games
Teams Japan, USA, and France move into Victor’s Village.
The Best Euro Surf Trips That Mightn’t Be On Your Radar
Want to know which less-trodden nation offers the most potential?
Former CT Surfer Chris Davidson Passes Away At Age 45
A radical life tragically ends outside a bar in New South Wales.
The Team Ukraine Interview
“There are mines near the shore, and already a lot of people have died…so it’s…