The hype-machine was turned on full blast for the second day of competition at the Reef Hawaiian Pro and the highly anticipated Clash of the Legends "Momentum Generation."
ASP Womens World Champ Carissa Moore hit the water as a wildcard with a local news station in tow. Since there aren't enough sponsorship dollars to run a female Triple Crown, this is Moore's victory lap in Hawaii. Despite all the media hype leading up to her heat, she was eliminated in the round of 96 by 2007 Reef Hawaiian Pro Champ Roy Powers and Maui's Ian Gentil.
Dane Reynolds, Jamie O'Brien, Taylor Knox. Those were the big names that fell in the second round yesterday: victims of hype.
But out of nowhere, a "stacked" first heat in the third round reminded the collective surfing audience why we buy into the hype of the Vans Triple Crown of Surfing. Florida's Evan Geiselman put on an air show on the lefts, landing four out of six aerial attempts in the heat. The goofy-footed-teenager nailed air reverse 360s confidently like they were simple front-side cutbacks. It was baffling how dialed Geiselman has those air reverses.
"Conditions are perfect, little lefts," said Geisleman who won the heat with a two-wave total of 17 out of a possible 20 points. "There's a couple of rights, but the lefts have the craziest air-wind on it and it's pretty much tailor-made for what I like to surf."
Advancing out of the heat with Geiselman was Hawaii's Ezekiel Lau. The Native Hawaiian, regular foot did "big boy" turns on the Haleiwa rights, burying the rail and blowing the tail. Lau destroyed a head-high right with a front side hack and a gnarly layback on the close out section. Uncle Sunny Garcia would have been proud.
"I knew the bigger waves of the set were coming in where I was sitting," explained Lau who advanced into the next round with a 15.13 two-wave total. "Going into that heat I knew Evan was going to just bust his air game because that's his thing and I knew I had to compensate for that. I knew (Josh) Kerr was an air guy, too so I tried to separate myself with more power and more turns."
Lau displayed classic, Hawaiian power surfing with a new school flare and narrowly beat World Tour surfer, Kerr.
Kerr earned the highest scoring ride of the event with a crazy-high, backside reverse 360 on the lefts, which the judges rewarded with a 9.7 out of a possible 10 points. The Australian regular foot had a chance to steal second from Lau, but Kerr fell on a floater in the last seconds of the heat. Former ASP World Junior Champ Kai Barger was in that heat and finished in fourth.
Kolohe Andino was rocking seven stitches and a dishwashing glove thanks to a fin slice, and advanced into the next round. John John Florence continues his gnarly season, and is into the fourth round.
The Momentum Generation paddled out to the windy, 3-to 6-foot wave face heights at Haleiwa yesterday for the 2011 Clash of the Legends. Event organizers hyped it up between the second and third rounds.
Ross Williams narrowly won the throwback heat against Shane Dorian. Rob Machado rode a funky, blunt-nosed Merrick and got all steezy on the lefts. After the heat, Kalani Robb remembered out loud why he doesn't surf contests anymore as he went to the shower. Perhaps it's all the hype that had the goofy-foot disenchanted with competition?
Go ahead and buy into the hype, today is the final day of the 2011 Reef Hawaiian Pro and it's so on.
2011 Reef Hawaiian Pro Results:
2nd Round of 96
Heat 9: Luke Davis (USA) 11.43pts ; Shaun Joubert (ZAF) 8.83pts ; Lincoln Taylor (AUS) 7.17pts ; Yuri Sodre (BRA) 3.67pts
Heat 10: Dion Atkinson (AUS) 13.00pts ; Adam Robertson (AUS) 11.73pts ; Jamie O'Brien (HAW) 8.80pts ; Joan Duru (FRA) 8.07pts
Heat 11: Tanner Hendrickson (HAW) 14.00pts ; Torrey Meister (HAW) 10.20pts ; Dane Reynolds 8.90pts(USA) ; Billy Stairmind (NZL) 5.00pts
Heat 12: Vincent Duvignac (FRA) 10.67pts ; Romain Cloitre (FRA) 9.83pts ; TJ Barron (HAW) 8.20pts ; Dylan Graves (PRI) 6.06pts
Heat 13: Jack Freestone (AUS) 10.90pts ; Aritz Aranburu (EUK) 10.00pts ; Shaun Cansdell (AUS) 8.70pts ; Blake Thornton (AUS) 5.40pts
Heat 14: Roy Powers (HAW) 10.00pts ; Ian Gentil (HAW) 8.50pts ; Cory Lopez (USA) 7.50pts ; Carissa Moore (HAW) 5.60pts
Heat 15: Nathaniel Curran (USA) 12.00pts ; Marc Lacomare (FRA) 10.00pts ; Royden Bryson (ZAF) 7.23pts ; Perth Standlick (AUS) 3.23pts
Heat 16: Wiggolly Dantas (BRA) 15.10pts ; Eric Geiselman (USA) 12.67pts ; Masatoshi Ohno (JPN) 8.73pts ; Casey Brown (HAW) 4.90pts
Clash of the Legends
RossWilliams (HAW) 14.50pts ; Shane Dorian (HAW) 14.44pts ; Rob Machado (USA) 10.26 ; Kalani Robb (HAW) 5.33pts
3rd Round of 64
Heat 1: Evan Geiselman (USA) 17.00pts ; Ezekiel Lau (HAW) 15.13pts ; Josh Kurr (AUS) 12.57 ; Kai Barger (HAW) 10.66pts
Heat 2: Hodei Collazo (EUK) 13.33pts ; Kolohe Andino (USA) 11.27pts ; Kai Otton (AUS) 8.97pts ; Heath Joske (AUS) 8.84pts
Heat 3: Adrien Toyon (REU) 12.17pts ; Kieren Perrow (AUS) 11.86pts ; Travis Logie (ZAF) 11.64pts ; Tomas Hermes (BRA) 8.94pts
Heat 4: Nat Young (USA) 12.66pts ; Maxime Huscenot (FRA) 11.63pts ; Tom Whitaker (AUS) 10.44pts ; Damien Hobgood (USA) 10.30pts
Heat 5: Glenn Hall (IRL) 12.10pts ; Daniel Ross (AUS) 10.13pts ; Stu Kennedy (AUS) 6.33pts ; Raoni Monteiro (BRA) 2.79pts
Heat 6: Sebastien Zietz (HAW) 13.23pts ; Thiago Camaro (BRA) 11.90pts ; Davey Cathels (AUS) 11.27pts ; Taylor Knox (USA) 9.00pts
Heat 7: John John Florence (HAW) 16.60pts ; Kekoa Bacalso (HAW) 13.17pts ; Matt Wilkinson (AUS) 11.40pts ; Nathan Yeomans (USA)
Heat 8: Taj Burrow (AUS) 16.26pts ; Leonardo Neves (BRA) 14.36pts ; Mason Ho(HAW)13.97pts ; Conner Coffin (USA) 12.20pts
Heat 9: Adriano De Souza (BRA) 13.60pts ; Adam Robertson (AUS) 12.67pts ; Luke Davis (USA) 9.87pts ; Sean Moody (HAW) 9.86pts
Heat 10: Dusty Payne (HAW) 14.90pts ; Dion Atkinson (AUS) 14.70pts ; Shaun Joubert (ZAF) 12.70pts ; Richard Christie (NZL) 5.15pts
Heat 11: Tanner Guduskas (USA) 15.27pts ; Adrian Buchen (AUS)13.44pts ; Romain Coitre (FRA) 12.10pts ; Tanner Hendrickson (HAW)
Heat 12: Adam Melling (AUS) 10.69pts ; Brett Simpson (USA) 10.33pts ; Vincent Duvignac (FRA) 9.83pts ; Torrey Meister (HAW) 6.53pts
Heat 13: Michael Bourez (PYF) 13.34pts ; Jesse Mendes (AUS) 11.87pts ; Jack Freestone (AUS) 10.13pts ; Ian Gentil (HAW) 8.83pts