Tyler Newton And Team Weedmaps Win The 2019 Da Hui Backdoor Shootout
Pardon the cliché, but when the waves are this good everyone’s a winner.
Is it just us, or should the Pipe Masters and Backdoor Shootout switch their event titles?
Every year it’s the same thing – the Masters runs in primarily righthand (and of varying quality) surf during their December waiting period, while the Shootout scores 10-12 foot immaculate lefts over the January window.
And seriously, how good was Pipe for this week’s Da Hui event?
The five days of competition offered countless aquatic canopies, in which a field of sun-wary travelers shielded themselves from Hawaii’s harmful rays.
The final day started out clean and mean, with Pacific groundswell traversing a textureless surface and cascading upon Pipeline’s concrete reef. Big scores coincided with late drops and surprise emersions, as they tend to do at the Pipeline.
But as the sun continued to beat down on competitors, so did the wind decide to switch. Ballroom tubes turned to crashing chandeliers as foreheads and noses became an unsettling shade of red.
Who would ultimately survive?
As far as singular performances go, the most well-shaded surfer of the week was Japan’s Keito Matsuoka, whose thick-lipped runner offered an SPF of 100 and a perfect 12-point score. He also landed the third highest three-wave total of the event, landing Keito a bronze medal at the Shootout.
Being of a pasty Irish descent, no surfer knows the importance of sunscreen re-application better than Jamie O’Brien. But seeing that JOB surfs for hours when the waves are on, he doesn’t always have time to paddle in and block-up. That’s why the Hawaiian’s made a career out of sitting in the shade, leading to several excellent scores in the Shootout and a second place overall finish.
However if we’re talking about the most consistently covered surfer of the event, Hawaii’s Tyler Newton milked each of his waves for their last inches of shade, only to slide out at the final second like Indiana Jones and not Filipe Toledo. Tyler’s highest scores include an 11.5, 10.5, and 9.83, which were enough to earn him the event win and a melanoma-free 2019.
Meanwhile another Japanese national, Shota Nakamura, slipped into fourth place while new-CTer Seth Moniz, Hawaiian undergrounder Kala Grace, and amateur RC-car operator Bruce Irons finished fifth, sixth, and seventh irrespectively.
Taking the group win was Team Weedmaps, who smartly clouded themselves in thick plumes of sativa for both jah and sun protection purposes. Their four-man wrecking crew included Seth and Josh Moniz, Bruce “he vaped so hard it looks like the wave is spitting” Irons, and the 2019 Da Hui Backdoor Shootout individual champion Tyler Newton.
In sum: Pipeline fired, the sun was hot, and Da Hui put on another damn fine surf event.
Maybe we’ll figure out the official format by 2020.
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