This is a shot from the opening ceremony of the Oakley Pro Keramas. Sure there was good waves ridden, and I won’t pretend there wasn’t nubile young women sluicing in tiny bikinis by the pool, but this shot just had so many bad heads, so many wrong faces, we just had to run with it. I looked at their heads and then I wrote this.
Jon Jon (backrow, second from left): “I was doing my ten minute routine, stretching, the whole bit, I looked and saw Jon Jon just lounging and lying around by the pool," says Adam Melling. “Four minutes before the heat he gets up all lazy, goes to get his shirt and then does the biggest aerial anyone has ever seen. So, really, what do you do?" We have no idea either Adam.
CJ Hobgood (back row, middle) : I am happy, I am Hobgood. I was unhappy once, for about three seconds. I like this hat. I look good in this heat. Later on he needed an 8 in the last three minutes. He got it, he smiled.
Jack Robinson (second back row, second from left): That’s him giggling like a kid. That’s cause he is a kid, and you’d be laughing too if you surfed as good as him, as often as him. While he had a shocker in heat with Kelly Slater, and had a total two heat score of 9, this kids is beyond the real deal. “It’s pretty good out here eh," he told me, in one of his 18 freesurfs. “I am going to go out the back and get a big one." Which he did, repeatedly. The little prick.
Adam Melling (second back row, third from left: “He seems happy. But then in the surf I saw him get dropped in by an eight year old Brazilian with blonde hair down to his waist. “He looked like one of those remote control surfers. It was too ridiculous for words."
Kieren Perrow (Second backrow fifth from left): Looks happy, he should be. In round 1, he lost his heat but did the biggest aerial of his life and landed it clean as a whistle. “It was different to my usual airs in that I didn’t land on my fins," he said. “I was as surprised as anyone. Then I gave a Toledo a fucking two footer and he won the heat."
Mick Fanning (second backrow, centre): This is a face that says, I know who I am. I know everything about me. I know I have a towel on my head and I don’t care. Won his first round heat, no airs, pure power, pure belief. Bad head though.
Michel Bourez (second back row, third from right): Coming out of the ceremony I asked if he was in fact a middle ages warrior sent from an Asian past to wreak l havoc on the world. He said “No".
Adriano DeSouza (second back row, far right): Perched here, in a schoolboy stance, like a naughty boy caught by the headmaster. Out in the freesurf I was impressed as he talked up a local grommet, heaped praise and made the kid’s year. Five minutes later, he burned me on the best (and only) wave of my freesurf. I was less impressed.
Seabass (front row, far left): I asked Seabass to tell me a joke and he said, “What do you get when you throw an infant down some stairs. I dunno, what do you get when you throw an infant down some stairs," I replied. “A boner." What a sick fuck, what a legend. He had a beer in his hand, he had scored a 19.8 and was still smashed by Jon Jon in the first round. Came back in the second and destroyed the place.
Ace (front row, third from left): He doesn’t look happy, which is unusual. He did one very big turn for one very big score. He’s thinking hard here. He’s thinking I have a very good backhand, but I can’t do airs. This is a problem I can’t resolve.
Jordy Smith (front row, fourth from left): “I have been working on my claims," he told me. “Bru you got to have fresh content, you got a bust out new gear, or shit gets stale. Just save it for the quarters, no one wants to see that stuff in the early rounds." And I reckon you could book him for the quarters now. He destroyed onshore Keramas. He is my new favourite. Next to his girlfriend, who I saw in the pool. He’s looking at her here. It’s been 20 seconds since he’s seen her, and it’s freaking him out.
Matt Wilkinson (front row, second from right): “I am not okay, I am very fucking far from okay,’ he said just after is round one shocker. “Are you kidding me, that was shit. Low tide, only one section to do anything, which was completely dry. It’ (s sharp, its urchined infested. Did I mention I am not happy."