Stab Magazine | Remembrance Of A Rookie Year's Past With Conner Coffin

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Remembrance Of A Rookie Year’s Past With Conner Coffin

The first year cuts deepest.

cinema // Mar 14, 2017
Words by stab
Reading Time: 2 minutes

“I always had a feeling he would qualify when he was a little older, that it would happen when it was supposed to,” said Conner Coffin’s dad from the backyard of the family house at Pipeline the day his son qualified for the tour. Funny how dads can sense shit like that. 

Spearheaded by party planner Parker Coffin, the festivities were a night to celebrate the years of sacrifice by Conner. Graduating to the big dance by the skin of his teeth in the last QS contest of the year, just based on the invite list it was obvious that a lot of very talented and well-respected people wanted him on tour. Dane was there with his young family. Julian was there. Michel brought the Tahitian love. Dozens poured through the backyard over the course of the night. Beer bong games raged. Parker fell over more than once. Conner, in his cool, understated style, hung back and soaked it all in.

Conner’s surfing was always better suited for the CT than the QS. Given he grew up watching Tom Curren, Bobby Martinez and Dane style through Rincon, has access to family property on the Ranch and the North Shore, and worked as a boat driver at Tavarua, Conner was better versed in quality waves than most tour rookies.

It wasn’t surprising when he rang in the 2016 season with a ninth at Snapper and then backed it up with a fifth at Bells. 

“That heat at Bells with Mick and Jordy, that was probably my favourite heat all year,” reflects Conner.

He freely admits the wheels came off mid-season with a string of bad results. 

“All of a sudden I had five bad results and it happened so fast, I don’t think I ever got over the loses at Margarets and Brazil and just carried that energy around with me,” he says.

After a head-clearing stint at home, with the help of Rincon’s groomers, he promptly got his groove back. He finished strong in Europe, notching a second-place finish in Portugal.

The 2017 season is at hand and Conner’s quietly been putting together the pieces in the offseason. He switched sponsors (another nod to Curren). He trained. He dialled in his C.I. quiver even more than it already was. He’s healthy and hungry. California expects big things from him this year, but he may expect even bigger things from himself.

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