The thing with the WQS is, it’s dirty. It’s filthy dirty.

It’s kinda like a cross between Romford greyhound races, where the favourite comes last and the 250-1 outsider romps home, and the Barclay’s Premiership, where anyone can beat anyone on a weekly basis.

It’s cruel, it’s random. It’s hard to call.

Dudes will be on fire, then inexplicably won’t make a heat the rest of the year. There’s hardly any rhyme or reason, which actually kinda makes it way more watchable than the WCT. Sort of.

Here is’s round of the the Euro princesses (with our assessment of their chance of qualifying in the next few years)


Photo: Christie

Strengths: Probably the most natural and pleasing-on-the-eye surfer in Europe, an unofficial title he took over from Jonathan Gonzalez. Joan has got a deadly backhand, charges, is an incredible tuberider and surfs the open face with creative flair.

Weaknesses: Not aggressive enough in heats, lacking that steely resolve. Seems to surf within himself unless/until he makes a few rounds.

We’re kind of bored of harping on about it, but Joan finished an excrutiating equal 15th (on equal points with Blake Thornton, who qualified) in 2009. At the time, it seemed like he’d get back in real soon, but that seems like an awfully long time ago now…

Joan hasn’t yet found the consistency to churn out 7 good results in the same season

. It can also seem like a bit of an effort for him to do the Tour.” reckoned former coach Didier Piter.

Up until recently, Joan was part of travelling trio with Martin and Lacomare (French Connexion), but now does the much of tour with better half Maud le Car. Kind of shy and not a big fan of the scene, that might suit him and help nudge his results up where his freesurfing screams they should be. Or not.


Photo: Testemale

Strengths: Consistency, power, resources. Marco can put a shift in in pretty much any kind of surf, from slop to kegs.

Weaknesses: Can seem a bit mechanical or over-coached compared with Joan. Not neccessarily a bad thing on the WQS, but he could get exposed on the WCT or whatever the fuck it’s called when/if he ever gets there.

It was a bit of a slap in the face getting so close to qualifying last year

, but it showed my surfing is where it needs be. It’s just made me even more fired up for this year,” reflected Marco on his close but no cigar 2013 season – his first full-time on the grind.

Marco has been groomed for qualification for a number of years and has had everything you could possibly want in order to get there in his corner. He knuckled down in a big way for his 2013 run, something that helped channel his focus and end up just two spots away from the WCT. However, he could do with ignoring the conspiracy theorists and learning from close losses…

Now let’s see if we can get through this whole text without mentioning Marco-Parko QPF2013… fuck!

Apparently not.


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