This past weekend saw the Rip Curl GromSearch movement roar back to life as the inaugural West Coast Qualifier was in full swing at 9th Street Huntington Beach. The talent was stacked, and names like Kalani David, Colin Moran, Kanoa Igarashi, and Jake Marshall are a few that demonstrated their heavy-hitter reputations are well-founded. Despite some standard morning fog, fun chest-high surf was on rapid fire for the groms to get busy at 9th Street, Huntington Beach.
In the boys 12 and under division, it was clear form start to finish that Jake Marshall meant business. Dropping an 8.0 at the end of the final, Marshall surfed with the perfect combination of flare and polish to solidify the win, as Griffin Colipinto, John Mel and Kei Kobayashi came up just short in the final.
Kanoa Igarashi really likes homecourt. The HB native owned his backyard from start to finish, as he completely dominated the Boys 14/under final with an 8.0 and an 8.5. Kalani David would show his talent and capability by dropping a 9.5 in the dying moments, but would fall shy by just a small margin.
The ladies, ladies, ladies. These girls were ripping. Kulia Dorherty got tagged with an interference early in the final leaving the heat wide open for the other girls. Nikki Viesins took full advantage of the opportunity and connected the dots well in her surfing to take home the victory.
The day came to an end in proper form, as the 16 and under Boys hit the water for a 20-minute battle royal. After falling behind early to Colin Moran, Kanoa took control with back-to-back gems shared with runner up Nic Hdez. The two ended in first and second respectively with Colin a close third and Jonah Carter rounding out the field.
Kanoa is both walking tall and walking away with $200 cash, the custom Kicker Audio iPod doc/headphone combo, and most importantly legitimizing himself as Huntington Beach's Champion of GromSearch 2011.
"The waves were supper fun," said Kanoa after the day was at its end. "I had the best board under my feet, and it feels good to take this one out. I have been doing GromSearch for 5 years now."
Rip Curl wants to give a big thanks to all the supporters H2O Overdrive, the presenting sponsor, Kicker Audio, Dragon Alliance, Power Balance, Future Fins, and Wahoo's. Also make sure you check out all the post event coverage on Surfline.com and Surfingthemagazine.com, our official media partners. We look forward to seeing you for Stop #2 in Hawaii at Kewalos July 9th. Stay tuned to www.ripcurl.com for all the updates.
OFFICIAL RESULTS OF STOP #1, 2011 RIP CURL GROMSEARCH FUELED BY H2O OVERDRIVE, 9Th Street Huntington Beach:
1. Kanoa Igarashi
2. Nic Hdez
3. Colin Moran
4. Jonah Carter
1. Kanoa Igarashi
2. Kalani David
3. Jake Marshall
4. Colt Ward
1. Jake Marshall
2. Griffin Colapinto
3. John Mel
4. Kei Kobayashi
1. Nikki Viesens
2. Frankie Harrer
3. Dax McGill
4. Kulia Doherty
H20 Overdrive Maneuver of the Event: Jake Marshall – $100
Dragon High Heat of the Event: Griffin Colapinto – $50