Mick Fanning found redemption at Jeffreys Bay, and now there are several surfers who are looking to capitalize on his absence for the upcoming Billabong Pro Tahiti. Despite surfing an abbreviated year for several events, Mick has arguably been the giant killer so far in 2016, vaulting to fifth in the rankings after J-Bay and taking out several big names along the way. Now, Matt Wilkinson and John John Florence — rated first and second, respectively — will be on the hunt for big points to cement their title hopes.
Here are the facts:
WHO: The WSL Men's Top 34 + 2 wildcards
WHAT: Stop #7 of the Men's 2016 WSL Championship Tour
WHEN: August 19-30
WHERE: Teahupo'o, Tahiti (largest island in the Windward group of French Polynesia)
DEFENDING CHAMPION: Jeremy Flores (FRA)
TIME ZONE: Teahupo'o, Tahiti is 6 hours behind the US East Coast and 3 hours behind the US West Coast.
This means that 8 am, August 19th in Tahiti is:
8 pm, August 19th in France
7 pm, August 19th in United Kingdom
2 pm, August 19th in New York
11 am, August 19th in Los Angeles
8 am, August 19th in Honolulu
Plan accordingly. If your time zone equivalent is not listed above, we recommend visiting www.TimeAndDate.com to see yours.
WILDCARDS / INJURIES / INJURY REPLACEMENTS: (Updated August 17th, 2016) Bede Durbidge and Owen Wright are both out of the event due to injury. Wright has announced he will miss the entirety of 2016. Mick Fanning has withdrawn from the event and will return for the Hurley Pro at Trestles. The two wildcards were decided at the Air Tahiti Nui Trials event. Bruno Santos (former event winner) and Hira Teriinatoofa are both available for trading.
EVENT WEBSITE: Tune into the WSL's event live at WorldSurfLeague.com
2016 Billabong Pro Tahiti
Heat 1: Jordy Smith, Dusty Payne, Ryan Callinan
Heat 2: Italo Ferreira, Kanoa Igarashi, Keanu Asing
Heat 3: Adriano de Souza, Miguel Pupo, Kai Otton
Heat 4: Gabriel Medina, Conner Coffin, Alex Ribeiro
Heat 5: John John Florence, Davey Cathels, Hira Teriinatoofa
Heat 6: Matt Wilkinson, Stu Kennedy, Bruno Santos
Heat 7: Michel Bourez, Kelly Slater, Matt Banting
Heat 8: Julian Wilson, Nat Young, Jeremy Flores
Heat 9: Sebastian Zietz, Josh Kerr, Jadson Andre
Heat 10: Adrian Buchan, Joel Parkinson, Alejo Muniz
Heat 11: Caio Ibelli, Kolohe Andino, Jack Freestone
Heat 12: Filipe Toledo, Wiggolly Dantas, Adam Melling
Trade your teams NOW for the Billabong Pro. Trading closes the moment the first wave of Heat One, Round One is taken. Visit FantasySurfer.com to choose your team now.