Above: Alex Gray (CA). Dropping into a good one in the first heat of the day. Photo: Brent.

In what has to be the best stretch of waves in Hawaii this winter, day three of the Volcom Pipe Pro saw some of the most trecherous 10-12 foot barrels detonate at the Banzai Pipeline. In a game of cat and mouse, competitors struggled to find their wave quota, doing their utmost to dodge the bombing 2nd and 3rd reef sets and somehow at the same time snag the medium 1st reefers that would let them in.

The day's standout performance (with the highest total of 17.47pts) came from none other than Kaui's Bruce Irons who, chosing to surf a slighty shorter but thicker board, managed to scratch into two bombs in the first 5 minutes of his heat, putting John John Florence, Antony Walsh and Sean Moody all in a combo situation. Defending champ John John did however manage to scrape through the heat in 2nd place with a last-minute backup score.

New York's Balaram Stack in his 10-point cavern. Copyright ASP.

As for 10-point rides, the judging pannel remained as selective as ever despite the danger involved, with only three perfect rides being awarded, one to New York's Balaram Stack and anothers to Hawaii's Dusty Payne and Puerto Rico's Dylan Graves.

Another day of great conditions is forecast for today (Wednesday). With the swell dropping Backdoor should start to turn on. So stay tuned to www.volcompipepro.com for the live webcast.

For highlights from the first two days of competition click Volcom Pipe Pro highlights.