Guess who’s back? Owen’s back. Well, Owen AND Bede, and damn did it feel good to see the two Aussies tearing it up for Round One of of the 2017 Quik Pro. Their first heats back in the big league and it didn’t feel like they’ve missed a single beat, with both men combo-ing the f#@k out of the Snapper Rocks racetrack. On the scene was our staff photographer, Ryan “Chachi” Craig, who’s also shooting the Gold Coast for the first time. Here’s what he had to say about Owen’s backside roof ride that he captured above:

This is my first trip to The Gold Coast but it seems to me that Snapper is a tricky wave to shoot. It’s similar to many point breaks, but the sheer volume of people, as well as event construction, has made it a touch more difficult. Most of the morning and early afternoon heats had a bit of a full tide which limit the foreground, or even the places you can walk around, and shoot with all the water rushing over the rocks. As the tide dropped, the wave shape definitely improved and shooting from down the line became an option.

Owen Wright definitely seems to do more backside floaters than most other guys on Tour, but they’re legit. They’re functional, as well, but he does them on serious sections like in this photo. The sand’s good enough that a lot of waves have fast-moving tube sections, and Owen just laid down this massive drift on the top of the lip and free-fell back down in the flats, stomping it with ease. It’s rad to see Owen back and surfing as sharply as he was, he seems like he’s truly 100% back in the competitive zone and surfing like he did before his injury.