Slater Wins The Hurley Pro
Prior to the final day of the Hurley Pro, Dane Reynolds and Jordy Smith put together some of the most impressive rides in the history of competitive surfing. But during Dane’s semifinal, his girlfriend Courtney said what we were all thinking: “Oh no, he’s gonna have one of those heats again.” And sure enough he went on to post a trademark pair of two’s as his high scores after falling on every wave he rode. Jordy suffered a similar fate in his quarterfinal heat. But Jordy isn’t completely to blame though, because he broke two of his favorite boards on Friday, and the one he was riding during his heat against Bede Durbidge didn’t look nearly as sharp.
Similarly, Mick had ridden every wave flawlessly the entire event, but in two heats today he made more mistakes than he’ll care to remember. Meanwhile, Bede hadn’t made a mistake the entire event. The Hobgoods and Coach Gallager have a saying: “What would Bede do?” And on the final day he could do no wrong. Just like that he rolled over his competition—claiming the scalps of both Dane and Jordy—and found himself in the final up against the surfer who, no matter how many years he’s been in the game or how high the performance level rises, has no equal.
Watching Kelly gain momentum through the Hurley Pro was to see him at his best. He was the only surfer to freesurf before and after every day of competition and this allowed him to keep pace perfectly with the continually increasing swell—a swell that peaked in the final with a massive set that had him scoring a near perfect score on a tube-ride at Lowers of all places.
With Kelly’s victory today he jumps into a healthy lead in the ASP rankings. Looking ahead to the Europe leg, I wouldn’t be surprised to see him extend that lead because, right now, Hurricane Igor is marching toward the North Atlantic and ison its way to turning extra tropical. If the Dream Tour continues its run of luck from Lowers they will be looking at big and perfect barrels for France.
Can anyone match Kelly in big hollow beachbreak? Andy can, but he’s not in the world-title race. Dane can, but he probably won’t be able to do it heat after heat. Jordy? He can get extremely shacked on his frontside at New Pier, but in a shifty lineup with an equal number of lefts on offer, I’m not sold. It looks like Kelly is well on his way to Number 10.
HURLEY PRO TRESTLES FINAL RESULTS:
1 – Kelly Slater (USA) 18.13
2 – Bede Durbidge (AUS) 14.13
HURLEY PRO TRESTLES SEMIFINAL RESULTS:
SF 1:Kelly Slater (USA) 15.87 def. Mick Fanning (AUS) 10.43
SF 2:Bede Durbidge (AUS) 11.67 def. Dane Reynolds (USA) 9.63
ASP WORLD TITLE RACE TOP 5 (After Hurley Pro at Trestles):
1. Kelly Slater (USA) 40,000 pts
2. Jordy Smith (ZAF) 35,500 pts
3. Taj Burrow (AUS) 30,500 pts
4. Dane Reynolds (USA) 30,250 pts
5. Mick Fanning (AUS) 29,500 pts