Sean Doherty On: Day 4 Quiksilver Pro Francophilia

12 Oct 2015 0 Share

Sean Doherty

Senior Writer

When the Big Sky Kahuna sat down on the Seventh Day and created pro surfing, he could only have hoped it would come out something like what we saw today in France.

The World Sleep League just woke up. That was a fair day’s surfing, to be sure.

Some of the best waves seen all year were the canvas for some high water mark surfing. You had both the guys and the girls in the water, a big crowd, and then you had the undercurrent of the world title silently propelling everything along.

Let’s start with Gabe Medina. After a truly awful start to the season, where the world champ was so busy being the world champ he didn’t realise the season had started until July, you always had the sense that at some stage at the back end of the season Gabe would wake up one morning, look at the ratings, look up, look back down at the ratings again, then paddle out and start ripping the arms off people. That was today. His corked out backhand rotator in round four was the move of the season, a non-negotiable 10, and it lit a fire under this contest. I think it might have been back at Trestles that Ross Williams described Gabe as a “wasp” during his heat, buzzing the lineup looking for something to sting, and between now and the end of the year, you can bet plenty of people are gonna get stung, including some surfers with world titles on the line. 

SEE ALSO: Day 3, The Iceman of Cul Nus

After the criticism of the judging at Trestles, that old, one-dimensional surfing was being too heavily loved, we saw today the marriage of two schools rewarded out there today. When Julian Wilson landed a big alley-oop and surfed straight into a punishing re-entry in the first heat of the morning, the tone was set. The judges – the scapegoats for two traditionalists making the Trestles final – were clearly torching repetition and looking for something, anything, that resembled progressive surfing.

The return of John John Florence has certainly revived a tired October field. You just sense that with him there, the potential for a one-turn eight or nine – hell, even a 10 – becomes a reality in the judges’ minds, and it stops the other guys surfing safely for sevens and eights. John John landed two of the above turns for big numbers, and goes into the final day drawn against Gabe in the most intriguing of the quarters. But that bank was something. When the early rounds of the event were levelled by a big North Atlantic pulse, most figured the contest bank would currently be residing somewhere down near San Sebastian, but instead if anything its more groomed than it was before. The swell hung in there all day and with both the men and women down to the quarters they only need to squeeze one more day out of it to walk away from a classic event.

SEE ALSO: Day 2, Le Crazy

As far as world titles go, the final day is set up nicely. In the women’s, Carissa has a chance to surge ahead after rival Courtney Conlogue was bundled out by Tyler Wright late in the day. The men’s is far more open. Owen Wright gets Adriano de Souza in the quarter with the biggest title ramifications. In the top half of the draw Julian Wilson gets Italo Ferreira, while ratings leader Mick Fanning gets Bede Durbidge.

Having developed a strong sense of Francophilia after the past three days, it’s time to retire with a glass of vin rouge, and contemplate tomorrow. 

Bede Durbidge rounds out and heads to the quarters, Photo by Sholtz / WSL

Bede Durbidge rounds out and heads to the quarters, Photo by Sholtz / WSL

QUIKSILVER PRO FRANCE QUARTERFINAL MATCH-UPS:

QF 1: Julian Wilson (AUS) vs. Italo Ferreira (BRA)
QF 2: Mick Fanning (AUS) vs. Bede Durbidge (AUS)
QF 3: Adriano De Souza (BRA) vs. Owen Wright (AUS)
QF 4: Gabriel Medina (BRA) vs. John John Florence (HAW)

QUIKSILVER PRO FRANCE ROUND 5 RESULTS:

Heat 1: Italo Ferreira (BRA) 16.23 def. Jadson Andre (BRA) 15.07
Heat 2: Bede Durbidge (AUS) 18.30 def. Kolohe Andino (USA) 10.20
Heat 3: Owen Wright (AUS) 18.50 def. Jeremy Flores (FRA) 16.17
Heat 4: John John Florence (HAW) 16.80 def. Matt Wilkinson (AUS) 14.87

QUIKSILVER PRO FRANCE ROUND 4 RESULTS:

Heat 1: Julian Wilson (AUS) 17.37, Jadson Andre (BRA) 12.93, Kolohe Andino (USA) 10.47
Heat 2: Mick Fanning (AUS) 16.67, Bede Durbidge (AUS) 15.43, Italo Ferreira (BRA) 13.73
Heat 3: Adriano De Souza (BRA) 18.50, Jeremy Flores (FRA) 14.00, John John Florence (HAW) 13.37
Heat 4: Gabriel Medina (BRA) 19.83, Matt Wilkinson (AUS) 16.00, Owen Wright (AUS) 15.56

ROXY PRO FRANCE QUARTERFINAL MATCH-UPS:

QF 1: Johanne Defay (FRA) vs. Tyler Wright (AUS)
QF 2: Coco Ho (HAW) vs. Sage Erickson (USA)
QF 3: Carissa Moore (HAW) vs. Nikki Van Dijk (AUS)
QF 4: Tatiana Weston-Webb (HAW) vs. Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS) 

ROXY PRO FRANCE ROUND 4 RESULTS:

Heat 1: Tyler Wright (AUS) 14.90 def. Courtney Conlogue (USA) 14.60
Heat 2: Sage Erickson (USA) 14.27 def. Stephanie Gilmore (AUS) 13.54
Heat 3: Nikki Van Dijk (AUS) 13.17 def. Dimity Stoyle (AUS) 8.50
Heat 4: Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS) 14.50 def. Alessa Quizon (HAW) 14.27

ROXY PRO FRANCE ROUND 3 RESULTS:

Heat 1: Johanne Defay (FRA) 14.00, Tyler Wright (AUS) 11.94, Sage Erickson (USA) 7.24
Heat 2: Coco Ho (HAW) 14.93, Stephanie Gilmore (AUS) 13.74, Courtney Conlogue (USA) 13.10
Heat 3: Carissa Moore (HAW) 15.23, Nikki Van Dijk (AUS) 11.67, Alessa Quizon (HAW) 9.34
Heat 4: Tatiana Weston-Webb (HAW) 17.94, Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS) 16.00, Dimity Stoyle (AUS) 15.80

Tags: video , doherty , wsl , france , hossegor (create Alert from these tags)

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