Hawaiian sensation John John Florence on his way to defeating Brazilian Raoni Monteiro in Round 2. Photo: ASP / Will H-S
A fair touch smaller than Monday but just as perfect, yesterday saw nearly all of Round 2 completed at 6-to-8 foot Teahupoo.
First to hit the water, Josh Kerr got off to a great start against Mitch Coleborn, posting what would turn out to be the highest heat total of the day.
“The days leading up to the swell were so mentally draining because you’re trying to prepare yourself,” said Kerrzy. “I was just happy to be lying in bed last night in one piece. Yesterday was a great and historical day for this contest.”
In spite of the perfect conditions, long lulls throughout the day would prove a real challenge to competitors and the source of a couple big upsets. The first of which saw Jordy Smith lose to Brett Simpson, who until then hadn’t won a heat all year.
“It’s been a tough year,” said Brett Simpson. “I’ve surfed against a lot of good guys and I’m just stoked to get this win. This is a testing wave. On the one hand you think let me go home, this wave’s going to kill me, but on the other hand you get the waves of your life.”
Later in the day, Tiago Pires’s win over Julian Wilson came as another surprise. Julian Wilson, who in the dying seconds of his heat was left needing a measly 1-point score but was unable to convert.
Yesterday proved a success for the tour’s other European campaigner Aritz Aranburu, who dispatched Hawaii’s Freddy P with one of the day’s best backhand tube riding performances.
“I was waiting for the big waves,” said Aritz. “Luckily I got a great wave at the start and that gave me a lot of confidence. I’m stoked to be part of that heat and I really enjoyed it. This is a contest I really like and it suits me really well.”
The final heat of the day saw Sebastian Zietz and Alejo Muniz searching for barrels in increasingly difficult sets. When a gem finally rolled in it was Zietz who was sitting in position, air-dropping into a crazy 9.97, the highest single-wave score of the day.
“I didn’t sleep well last night because I was jittery after yesterday,” said Sebastian Zietz. “It’s not as big today but it’s still really fun and I’m stoked to make it through in such tough conditions.”
Through to Round 3, Zeitz will once again face off against fellow Hawaiian John John Florence.
For the forecast, Surfline are calling for:
“A rebuilding trend of surf through Wednesday as new swell fills in all day and peaks late. Some morning sickness/warble is possible Wednesday, with conditions improving through the afternoon as the swell builds, tide drops and SE/ESE trades also build. Thursday will see decreasing, but still strong, surf with favorable ESE trades. Friday will see a further decrease in surf. The next swell of real significance is lining up for Sunday afternoon and Monday, although local wind may be unfavorable.”
Billabong Pro Tahiti Round 2 Results:
Heat 1: Joel Parkinson (AUS) 17.17 def. Taumata Puhetini (PFY) 12.50
Heat 2: Nathan Hedge (AUS) 12.00 def. Adriano De Souza (BRA) 11.77
Heat 3: Josh Kerr (AUS) 17.90 def. Mitch Coleborn (AUS) 11.24
Heat 4: Brett Simpson (USA) 11.50 def. Jordy Smith (ZAF) 5.33
Heat 5: John John Florence (HAW) 11.00 def. Raoni Monteiro (BRA) 2.43
Heat 6: Bede Durbidge (AUS) 6.33 def. Glenn Hall (IRL) 2.93
Heat 7: Tiago Pires (PRT) 7.77 def. Julian Wilson (AUS) 7.60
Heat 8: Aritz Aranburu (ESP) 17.46 def. Fredrick Patacchia Jr. (HAW) 17.04
Heat 9: C.J. Hobgood (USA) direct advance to Round 3, Travis Logie (ZAF) withdrawn following injury
Heat 10: Mitch Crews (AUS) 10.17 def. Miguel Pupo (BRA) 8.60
Heat 11: Sebastian Zietz (HAW) 15.80 def. Alejo Muniz (BRA) 2.00
Billabong Pro Tahiti Round 2 Upcoming Match-Ups:
Heat 12: Matt Wilkinson (AUS) vs. Adam Melling (AUS)
Billabong Pro Tahiti Round 3 Match-Ups:
Heat 1: Taj Burrow (AUS) vs. Tiago Pires (PRT)
Heat 2: Josh Kerr (AUS) vs. Adrian Buchan (AUS)
Heat 3: Michel Bourez (PYF) vs. Aritz Aranburu (ESP)
Heat 4: Kolohe Andino (USA) vs. Mitch Crews (AUS)
Heat 5: Bede Durbidge (AUS) vs. C.J. Hobgood (USA)
Heat 6: Gabriel Medina (BRA) vs. Nathan Hedge (AUS)
Heat 7: Joel Parkinson (AUS) vs. Brett Simpson (USA)
Heat 8: John John Florence (HAW) vs. Sebastian Zietz (HAW)
Heat 9: Nat Young (USA) vs. Kai Otton (AUS)
Heat 10: Kelly Slater (USA) vs. Jadson Andre (BRA)
Heat 11: Owen Wright (AUS) vs. TBD
Heat 12: Mick Fanning (AUS) vs. Dion Atkinson (AUS)