January 28th, 2016
Posts Tagged ‘snapper rocks’
When you hear touring surfers say “I’ve been focusing on my equipment a lot lately” they’re not just talking about working with shapers. With today’s seven figure prize purses, surfers spend the off-season in Olympic style training facilities, boosting into foam pits, and testing new competitive sportswear technology like they were Apolo Ohno.
The first stop on the World Championship meant the unveiling of the world’s best surfers’ new signature designs they rely on for the marathon 9-month dream tour. The challenging conditions at the Quiksilver Pro Snapper Rocks required competitors to generate their own speed, rather than the wave propelling them through sections. Judges awarded the highest scores for aerial maneuvers, a trick that would be impossible with the constricting old nylon trunks of yesteryear.
Here’s a few of our favorite world title contenders, and the trunks they depended on for max agility and performance.
Slater’s Cyhper Nomad trunks feature a diamond dobby fabric that reduces contact with skin, therefore minimizing the dreaded “balloning” or trapped water that acts like a parachute. Kelly landed an equal 5th, which we hope retains his interest to pursue #12.
Jordy’s semi-final finish came via powerful railwork and 100m long combos. He had to muscle his big frame extra hard in the soft conditions, but managed to whip his tail around and take out contest favorite Joel Parkinson. His O’Neill Neurosis features 4-way epic stretch technology helped him blow up, and start his 2012 world title campaign.
Daynolds’ tour aspiration are less predictable than Slater’s, but we always know he’ll put on a show. In just two heats, he stomped 3 of the best 5 maneuvers of the contest. His freakishly agile and aptly named Cypher Revolt boardshorts features a poly-spandex fabric blend.
Parko’s Platinum-X Flux trunks by Billabong have ergonomic panels and water-repellant epic stretch fabric. His attention to those features have kept him a title threat into his 12th year on tour.
Taj’s intense dedication to training and equipment paid off with a victory at the 2012 Quiksilver Pro. His ocean friendly trunks made from recycled plastic bottles fall just above the knee. His Komplete shorts use zero gravity quad stretch, so they can have a less baggy fit without restricting motion. CONGRATS TAJ!!!
The Dream Tour starts a new season this week at the Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast, and the ASP Board of Directors once again ratified tour qualifications and personal conduct regulations. Pay close attention because your fantasy surfer team could live or die by the new rules… and in the SWELL fantasy league the losers pay their dues
Before we begin speculating about the craziness about to unfold on the goldy, where’s how the new regulations will affect this year’s World Championship Tour:
- Random Drug and Alcohol Testing -High paying corporate sponsors means high expectations for surfers not to show up high
- No Mid-Year Cut – Could it be true…Bobby Martinez’s vulgar rants actually made a difference?
- 1 yr vs 52 week rolling qualifying point total -This one actually benefits Nate Yeomans (opposed to rule #2)
With most surfers approving the new ASP rules (Wilco must have been “out to brunch”) the stage is set to kick off the season at head-high Snapper Rocks on Saturday morning. Like every year, nobody knows how committed Kelly is to a full year on tour but his first event results always tells us if he’s more interested in chasing swells or titles. Check out the gear Slater uses here.
Other storylines evolving in the twelve day boardriding festival are: the participation of free surfing freak Dane Reynolds who claims he is “Blown talent and would rather sit at home and play with crayons and ride f*cked up boards“, the one year anniversary of women’s high-performance surfing arriving on the world stage, and Wolfmother performing for the crazed Aussies occupying Coolangatta.
For those of you familiar with online fantasy sports, Fantasy Surfers follows the same best team wins format… SWELL’s league doesn’t. While all SWELL fantasy players meticulously factor every element in drafting surfers, top scoring teams merely get bragging rights. It is the losing team who must endure humiliating hazes. Punishments a cruel as 24hrs with a U-Lock for bikes, locked around the neck were dealt last year. See the video recap of the loser.
If you’d like to join SWELL’s fantasy surfer league, sign up here, and we will award savvy surf fans, while you get to watch us punish eachother for losing here in San Clemente. Each event prize ranges from $25 in SWELL product, to bigger gear jackpots.
For tips on building the a solid fantasy squad, read SWELL’s Fantasy Surfer Semi-gnar here. No Cheating.