First of all, lets just give thanks to Volcom for bringing back this tour stop. 2008 is the last time we had the pleasure of watching the world's best go head-to-head on these perfect lefts via live webcast.
Of all the events on tour, this might be the hardest to pick a team. When it comes to most places, there are guys that just stand above everyone on a talent level and it takes miracles for the less skilled to upset destiny. At Cloudbreak, or big Cloudbreak which it seems like will be happening this Sunday, who knows what can happen?
Obviously you can’t have all your favorites on a team because the budget on FASL doesn’t allow it, so you have to dig in and find the cost efficient people who will make it far. Here’s my roster…
History proves this is the right pick to win. Last year after he missed J-Bay, Kelly came back to win Teahupoo and smoothly sailed to #11. With the fact that John Florence has the biggest chance of anyone to threaten his title of “best surfer in history”, and given that John just won his first WT event, Kelly is going to be an animal in this event. I’m terrified not to have him on my team.
Could be considered a questionable pick knowing the option for John John, Owen, Parko, Jordy and Mick is likely lost by selecting Taj, but I’m going with the gut on this. TB is fresh off a 10-day boat trip to the Mentawais where he was filming for a groundbreaking Billabong movie. He cares about video sections more than just about everyone and I know he spent that time blasting the shit out of perfect waves. He steps in here and asserts himself back in the conversation for worlds best bridesmaid… again.
Of all the guys in the 20m price range, you get the most comfortable feeling from Ace. He never seems to screw up on a perfect left. It’s 8’s and 9’s all day, everyday for this guy. Automatic.
Damien and CJ Hobgood
After Globe dropped this event, the Hobgoods have not been the same. It has nothing to do with their surfing ability, it’s more that losing a left reef pass on tour was a momentum killer. Damien’s won here twice. CJ was a mainstay in the final rounds every single contest, one time losing in the final to Kelly at Restaurants. Where Teahupoo is a perfect wave that puts people on a slightly more even playing field, Cloudbreak is shifty and ever-changing. It requires constant on-wave adjustments to make barrel sections and link turns. Hard to find a duo who does that better than these twin brothers.
Clearly I’m running out of budget so I have to go blue collar to fill out my roster. Travis Logie is a bulldog. He lives for these events. It may not be the prettiest, but lord knows he’s going to park himself in the tube and make it out of anything possible. Plus he’s cold blooded. Remember last year when Trav was beat by Jordy Smith when he broke his ribs at Teahupoo? Well the contest officials had a blunder and put the heat on hold, which violated the rules. Trav demanded a re-surf of the heat and dragged his close friend through a literally painful loss. The guy’s a killer.
Yadin rides for Globe, which means he’s been to Fiji a number of times previously and surfed this event before. Sure he never did much in the way of winning heats before, but he’s an excellent backside tube rider, and is now married with a newborn. That may not mean much to most, but if you knew the young Yadin, you realize he’ll be focused on the contest this time instead of smashing dozens of Skull Draggers (a hectic beverage served on the island) and getting into altercations with Laird Hamilton.
Kind of in the mold of Travis Logie and Ace Buchan. Kieran charges and he doesn’t fuck up. Not normally spectacular, but very solid and for a small price.
Pick your team now at http://www.fantasyactionsportsleague.com