Jimmicane’s Passion Picks: France

First of all I want to let you people know that you should be using fantasyactionsportsleague.com instead of Fantasy Surfer. Why waste your time with FS when it’s a piece of garbage and you don’t even know what you’re playing for? This is what it says on Fantasy Surfer’s website:

Grand Prize – TBA
Grand Prize is determined by the top 7 scores of the 2011 season on the men’s side of Fantasy Surfer, this excludes all women's events. Skybox prizes depend entirely on which brands are participating and what prize that brand chooses to offer.

I know a guy who won it one year and, although the promised prize was an all-expenses-paid trip to Indo, he ended up netting a wetsuit. Now is that bullshit or what?

Those of you who take these fantasy shenanigans seriously (and I know many of you do) are blowing it if you aren’t on fantasyactionsportsleague.com. Each event you can pay $10 and if you win, you pocket a clean $1000. If you even make the top 10 you make money. That sounds a lot better than wasting your time all year to get a goddamn full-suit. Me personally, I don’t take this seriously at all and I play in the free league because I know it’d be a miracle if I placed. I just pick the people I feel like picking and give you sometimes-ridiculous reasons for why I do, but also sometimes secret insider info that you all love. Here we go for France! —Jimmicane

Passion Picks for the 2011 Quiksilver Pro France:

Expect plenty more bottles of this to be popped by this man.

Kelly Slater

You already know I’m riding with the bald king for the rest of 2011. Kelly will not be denied his 11th crown. Although he no longer strikes fear in his competitors' hearts, which is the first sign of a downfall, he still is unstoppable for at least this year. Owen, Jordy, Julian, Adriano – these guys are not fucking around anymore. That crew wants to beat Slater badly and aren’t scared to give it a go. They just aren’t quite polished (or in some cases good) enough to do it consistently. One annoying commentator mentioned during Lowers that Kelly must have “climbed the Fountain of Youth.” I’m guessing he meant to say drank from the Fountain of Youth but then again, why not climb the thing instead? It seems to have worked.

Julian may look like he’s in the valley of despair right here, but he certainly isn’t when it comes to the WT.

Julian Wilson

How can you not be impressed with J. Wilson? It’s his first year on tour and so far he’s fared better than anyone who’s come before him with the same amount of hype. Maybe Jordy, Dane, and Dusty set the scales of expectation so low that they left Jules without any pressure from the public to succeed right away. Already the stage doesn’t look too big for him. He’ll even go run up after a heat and talk shit straight to the judges for falling into the old mode of scoring length of ride and other such should-be-extinct criteria.

Josh Kerr

This is just a pure case of playing the hot hand. Every other year he’s been on tour you could lock Kerr in for a near-last-place result. He was a consistent underachiever who looked like he was straining to push the innovation envelope for the sake of self-pride and backing up claims. Finally, though, he’s settled into his assigned seat in the top 10. I don’t see him reverting back in the beachbreaks of France.

Gabriel Medina

It was three years ago to the month that the world first laid eyes on 15-year-old Gabriel Medina. He executed a beat-down of epic proportions at the Quiksilver King of the Groms championships in Hossegor. Just embarrassing fools all the way to the final, where he dropped the 20-point bomb. Perfect heat. The Hobgoods' blog (very popular at the time) was the place most of us noticed what he’d done. Superman airs back then were still lame, but not as stupid as they are now, so I can’t blame a 15-year-old for utilizing them. I hope he doesn’t go that route in this event, but I do expect him to make some noise and wreck some WT dinosaurs' dreams.

Dan Ross

This is where Passion Picks reverts back to its old self: picking people who aren’t necessarily going to do well but instead people I feel deserve some love. Dan Ross gives it hell. I would like to extend an invitation for Dan Ross to join #teamgivinithell. He certainly fits our profile of giving it all you got, all the time. At least from what I can see. Who else on tour is actively thinking about their future in life? Seemingly only Dan Ross. This man is already into coaching girls like Sally Fitzgibbons, as well as continuing to keep pace at the bottom half of the WT cutting board. Haters can hate, but the bottom line is $7k for last place in a WT event. Why not ride that out 'til the sun don’t shine? I’m feeling a karmic result for the Danimal here in France. Round 3 here Dan comes!

Dusty Payne

Give me something here, Dusty! I’ve vouched for you all year and it hasn’t really panned out. Starring in Lost Atlas was cool, but winning an event would be cooler, and would make your pockets way fatter. Give it hell!

Miguel Pupo

I was skeptical about this kid’s surfing as a whole package until recently. I know he has the airs and can post a score on any piece of water that moves, but I wasn’t really aware of his ability to rack real rail turns until I saw him in the Azores Prime event. This blame can be mostly put on sponsors. Watching contests is not enough. We as fans need to see freesurf footage to properly form our opinions. Please Hurley, put Miguel on a non-contest trip. Put me on that trip to photograph.

I’m gonna do a slideshow — it’s called “Dane With Beer in Hand”. It’s a two-hour showing. Each photo flashes for three seconds.

Dane Reynolds

Dane’s back for real this time. No injuries. He says he’s a go and check it out, he’s only $4 million off your fantasy budget. Will Dane make some heats? Who knows, but I can tell you from the sequences I saw of his recent trip to Japan, which in the digital days is like watching every wave on slo-mo video, Dane is surfing better than ever. Just wait till you see our next issue. He goes HAM.

Tune in to the Quik Pro France live here: http://quiksilverlive.com/profrance2011/liveHD.en.html