Sharing those sweet Sunset swells

Gary Kewley
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Friday - October 05, 2007
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The NSSA event at Sunset had a nice 5-foot swell
The NSSA event at Sunset had a nice 5-foot swell

Aloha surfers,

Since the middle of September we’ve had five separate swells, most in the 4-foot-plus zone. The last one was a real nice 5-foot NW which the National Scholastic Surfing Association (NSSA) event at Sunset leveraged. In fact, the young guns scored also on Saturday (Sept. 15) for the Billabong Junior Pro ... again, at Sunset. I must mention that I support contests and our future pros, however, I also relate to the expressed concern (bummed-out) residents who love Sunset. They’ve had to miss two excellent swells. I feel their pain ... it’s bad timing. Everyone’s hungry for these new swells at the start of the season. They’re precious. Then they’ve had to wait it out (again) on Sunset’s best days - over the weekend - only to see waves go away along with the event. It was great to have the last swell keep its magic through Monday and relieve some pain. But hard-core locals who prefer to keep their breaks open to the public 24/7 are going to have to change their expectations as the coming months bring the BIG competitions. These also bring millions of dollars to the North Shore and billions of impressions worldwide. They’re good for Hawaii and surfing. Our needs - like nature and surfing - are served best with good balance and timing.

The student body had its chance to show good balance and timing last weekend at NSSA’s third event. Sunset was as good as it gets at 3 to 5 feet, and the performances matched. The tour of events is interisland and RVCA is the proud sponsor. These are our most gifted and smart surfers who not only know the value of a good cutback, but also know the value of good grades. Double winners on the weekend event included Granger Larsen from Maui, taking first in both the Open Men and Explorer Juniors, and Alessa Quizon in the Explorer Girls and Women and a third in the Open Women. Not to be outdone, Mini-Grom Kalani David put on a huge display of high-level surfing as the 9-year-old led the charge for a win in the Open Mini-Grom. Other standouts include Open division winners Benji Brand (Boys), Tanner Hendrickson (Juniors) and Monyca Byrne-Wickey (Women). The next event on the RVCA tour is at Banyans on the Big Island Oct. 27 and 28.

The RVCA/NSSA event at Sunset was as good as it gets
The RVCA/NSSA event at Sunset was as good as it gets

Well, Mick Fanning did it again ... he won the QS pro in France and now has two wins this season to add to his amazing consistency (seconds and thirds). Most guys are convinced he’s going to be the next world champ. I thought Slater was going to pass him, but no. This verifies that Slater is human. Both Irons and Slater went out with an equal 17th and gave Fanning a huge advantage going into Spain ... the last stop before the Billabong Pipe Masters. If Mick wins here with Slater and Taj Burrow two heats below ... he will clinch it. If he finishes second in Spain, Slater and Burrow have to post a fifth place or better to keep their title aspirations alive. It’s still open, but the door is closing fast. In fact, it’s very possible they’ll be done by the time you read this, so log onto SURFNEWSNETWORK.COM.Andy Irons’chances of grabbing his fourth world title are slim now. But this will make him a starving madman for his fifth Triple Crown and Pipeline Masters. Frankly, that would be one of the most impressive feats in surfing history. Not even Slater or Sunny Garcia has that record. It would be mind-boggling to witness for Hawaii’s greatest competitive surfer ever.

Have a great week of wave riding. Catch you here next week ... stoked!

GQ, Dropping In 4 U!

Huge mahalos to J/B for never missing a shot ... hit

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