Polynesian Pride

Gary Kewley
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Friday - January 13, 2006
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Miliani’s Kekoa Bacalso won the Billabong World Junior Championship at North Narrabeen, Sydney, Australia
Miliani’s Kekoa Bacalso won the Billabong World
Junior Championship at North Narrabeen, Sydney,
Australia

Happy New Year, surfers! We have a fresh start for a brand new year ... feels good ... just like a new swell rolling to shore. As of Wednesday, we will have had our 12th fresh storm for the big-wave season! It’s been exceptional in quantity and quality. We can even expect some new pulses from “down under” hitting town around now and the middle of the month - this is also exceptional! So, be stoked and be ready for more.

The BIG PICTURE sees the North Pacific brew a little less hot but definitely still worth a bite! That jet stream I explained last week has been relatively calm compared to December, but still not bad. A lot of the storms “up there” have sent the surf to California and passed us to the east. Not to complain, ‘cause even our leftovers are bigger than most spots along the West Coast. For more juicy details on the goings on with our “Pacific Beast,” log on to surfnewsnetwork.com - I explain it there. Plus, now the SNN Team has its own surf cams -free for all!


Hey! We have some more new Polynesian pride ... We’ve heard lots lately about Andy and Bruce Irons, Sunny Garcia, Pancho Sullivan, Jamie O’Brien, Fred Pattacchia Jr., Megan Abubo, Carissa Moore, Rochelle Ballard ... plus, so many, many others in past Glory Days.

Miliani’s Kekoa Bacalso won the Billabong World Junior Championship at North Narrabeen, Sydney, Australia, and then celebrated

Miliani’s Kekoa Bacalso won
the Billabong World Junior
Championship at North
Narrabeen, Sydney, Australia,
and then celebrated

Now we can add another to that relatively new list above: Mililani’s Kekoa Bacalso, the new Billabong World Junior Champion! This is huge because it holds first-ever ASP sanctioned world-title status!

The event was staged at North Narrabeen Beach in Sydney, Australia. The final day was last Friday, Jan. 6, in 4-foot waves. The stocky powerhouse eliminated Tahitian Michel Bourez’s chances for the title in the two-man Polynesian final. Kekoa has a low center of gravity and is able to move lightning fast off the bottom and top of waves sending spray flying. He’s also disciplined and knows how and when to focus: “all that work was worth it ... I spent a lot of time concentrating on the conditions and stayed off the party program to focus on my surfing in the event and it paid off.” It certainly did! Kekoa Bacalso is now in very good company. Guess who’s won this event in the past? How about the 1998 junior champ, Andy Irons? Or how about the likes of Taj Burrow, CJ and Damien Hobgood, Joel Parkinson, Mick Fanning, Dean Morrison and, whoops, I’m sorry Bruce ... I didn’t mean to place you last on this list and your brother Andy first. In conclusion, if winning this prestigious contest is any indication of Kekoa’s potential/talent, we’ll be seeing more from this young man from Mililani this year!

Here are a couple quickies: One, the Quiksilver Makahiki Festival out at Makaha last weekend once again proves that it’s God’s Country out there and two, the “Friends of Kewalo” prove that “the people” can make a positive difference! Indeed, the people of Hawaii continue to inspire no matter what side of the Islands they’re on! Mahalo to each of you for your contribution. Let’s keep it up along with the surf for all 2006!

I’m GQ, dropping in 4 U.

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