First place winner Mason Ho pretty much summed it up as he called out the names of everyone he wanted to thank in helping him get to the podium of the Hard Rock Caf Junior Pro 2007 at Sunset Beach this past weekend. There was his immediate family that includes his dad, Michael (former champ), his ‘little’ sister Coco (already a girls div. champion) and his uncle Bryan Suratt for coaching him through the weekend’s inaugural
Championship. Along with everyone else in his camp, the kid was surrounded by more ‘local’ knowledge than you could ever dream of.
As they say, the DNA doesn’t fall too far from the tree. Like his father two decades before him (or was it three?) Mason possesses a natural ability that guided him through the 48 surfers that showcased some of the best talent in the Pacific for the next generation.
Sunset Beach must have felt honored to host the event, she offered up a weekend of ‘super-fun’ 6-foot surf, keeping the competitors busy with plenty of waves between the point and middle reef line-ups.
In the Final it was a game of chase for the other three contestants with Mason pulling an 8.0 and never looking back. Kauai’s Kyle Ramey came in second, Maui’s Clay Marzo 3rd and 14-year old John John Florence grabbing 4th. The other big winner? No doubt, the folks at Hard Rock Caf, once again supporting the sport by showing their desire to go the distance with their recent sponsorship of Hawaii junior Kekoa Cazimero and now getting a winner of an opening event to build from. – Bernie Baker