If soon-to-be-retiree Joel Parkinson is given a tight, right-pocket, he’s going to vaporize it. And that’s exactly what he did today, all the way through the final at the Hawaiian Pro with his silky cat style, as Haleiwa fed him punchy wave after punchy wave. Hell, that’s pretty much what he’s done the last twenty years on tour.
“I feel like I want to surf another heat,” Parko said in his post-heat interview, which is a stark contrast to his retirement announcement just a few months ago, when he said, “Putting the jersey on is the one thing I've had enough of." Parko still has plenty more heats to surf in the Vans Triple Crown and, by the looks of it, the fire to win them. If he continues to carry what WSL commentator Chris Coté dubbed as, “refined savagery,” to Sunset and Pipeline, he’ll easily nab a fourth Vans Triple Crown Title, slamming the door shut on his way out. The right way to do it. The best way to do it.
Hawaiian Pro runner-up Mateus Herdy spent the final hunting ramps but instead found the best barrel of the day. In earlier rounds, the 17-year-old Brazilian not only proved that he has a consistent air game on par with the ‘CT fly boys, but that he’s got the claims to follow them too. Nearly every make was finished off with a bow or a hand-shaped heart to the beach. The second place finish shot Herdy up to the No. 12 spot on the ‘QS, well within striking range for qualification.
Speaking of qualification, finalist Ricardo Christie has elated his home island of New Zealand by securing a spot on next year’s ‘CT with his third place finish. Backflipping Hawaiian Seth Moniz has also qualified for next year’s ‘CT with his semifinal finish. Ryan Callinan will also be on tour next year, as well as finalist Deivid Silva.
More shakeups are still to come with the Vans World Cup of Surfing commencing at Sunset Beach on November 25.