Italo Ferreira Is the Best Surfer in the World (At This Moment), Barton Lynch Is Back on the Mic Commentating Uluwatu! Plus Billabong in Mexico Is The Clip of the Week
COASTALWATCH | THIS WEEK IN SURFING
Ten Things From Surfing & The Internet On The Week That Was June 8, 2018
1. Lakey Peterson and Italo Ferreira Won Keramas, Became World No. 1s
I know this seems like old news, what with it being five days ago and all, but believe it or not this is something that happened this week. The Corona Bali Protected was sick, such a ripper of an inclusion to the CT schedule. The only downfall was that it happened to coincide with perhaps the best Cloudbreak swell in about 40 years (or 5), a swell that hit Fiji the same time the FIji Pro is usually scheduled. But it always seems to happen that way, doesn't it? Am I right in remembering that the year immediately following the then ASP's decision to drop Mundaka from the CT, it was all-time? And the year they downgraded Jeffreys Bay to a QS it was so sick that Heath Joske was doing full speed high-lines like Terry Fitz on the iconic break.
Anyway, the results of Keramas make for an interesting shuffle of the rankings. We have two surfers who've never won a World Title leading their respective races. Italo Ferreira being the first male surfer to win two events this year is a huge statement, especially as he's the only surfer to make two finals, in fact, only Julian Wilson joins him as a surfer who's gotten past the quarter finals more than once this year.
Lakey similarily claims a second win, joining Steph on two wins each for 2018. That means that every event thus far has been won by one or the other. Do you hear what I hear? "Tiiiiiiiiitle Raaaaaaace!"
2. And We Have To Look At Italo's Air Again
Italo stomped this perfect 10, landing so clean that he was pretty well bottom turning before his board had even returned to the water. Smooth! Will this be the best air landed in competition this year, you think? If it's not, boy are we in for a treat.
3. John John Is Injured, Out of Uluwatu
So this will all but rule out a third World Title in a row for our lord and saviour John John Florence, following his poor start to the year.
John John wrote on his Instagram: "Unfortunately I hurt my knee during a freesurf here in Bali, and I have to pull out of the next event to get back and heal up as quickly as possible. I was trying bottom turns in the yard last night to see if there is any way for me to possibly surf this event, but nothing about it felt right."
You know what I reckon John John, I reckon you should just take the rest of the year off and make that knee super-perfect. The only thing between you and LeBron James style greatness is the care you take of your body as an athlete.
This year has been so much fun regardless of my results. Through some of the tough losses Ive learned more than I have in the past couple years. That’s why I love competing — the chance to learn is always there, win or lose. I love the drive to win you get from a loss. I feel like I’m more driven to win than ever from this year. Unfortunately I hurt my knee during a freesurf here in Bali, and I have to pull out of the next event to get back and heal up as quickly as possible. I was trying bottom turns in the yard last night to see if there is any way for me to possibly surf this event, but nothing about it felt right. Haha! I think it’s best I heal 100% before I get back in the water. When I was a little kid I watched my favorite surfers winning events and trying big airs and big maneuvers and dreamed of doing those things. I will never lose that. I’m excited for everything to come. I hope to come out of this injury smarter and more excited than I have ever been.
4. Speaking of Uluwatu
It starts today. At least, we thought it was going to start today. I planned to put highlights here of one of the world's best lefthanders, but day 1 of this Margaret River replacement event has felt like when your older brother is giving you a lift in his car, where every time you get to the car door he drives forward a foot. Every update stating a recheck in an hours time. Eternally chasing the call. Hey, hang on a second, literally while writing this, they've called it on. Heats in the water at 3.30pm. Which by the time you read this will have long since past, you'll be watching, maybe with a beer of peppermint tea in hand and snacks on your coffee table! Friday arvo with live surfing on, you beauty!
Update: I just turned it on and Barton Lynch is commentating. DROP EVERYTHING, BARTON LYNCH IS COMMENTATING THE WSL AGAIN! MAKING TERRY RICHO REFERENCES!!! Life is the best right now!
5. Billabong’s Mexico Clip Is Tops
It’s called, Life’s Better In Boardshorts, Chapter 4: Peyote Visions and it’s a ripper of surf clip. Featuring Creed McTaggart, Italo Ferreira (going mental without a contest jersey, what a time), Shaun Manners, Kai Hing, Freddy Morais, Jack Freestone, Griffin Colapinto and a banger of a Pond song. If I was to do a power ranking based on this past week, Italo Ferreira is without a doubt the best surfer in the world right now. But I won't be doing that, who has the time? Not me. I'm getting some snacks together and watching the WSL comp on at Uluwatu.
6. Ain't That Swell's Latest Episode Dives In On Fiji
And the Founders' Cup. Joined by Danny Johnson and Rob Bain, surfing's best podcast is not to be missed. Never. Ever. Ever. Unless you're busy or something. Then fair enough.
7. Keep An Eye On Isabella Nichols
Current no. 16 on the QS, Isabella Nichols from the Gold Coast via Iluka is one to watch, so let's watch: a fun edit freesurfing around the East Coast of Aus with plenty of dreamy beach break tubes throughout.
8. A New Sterling Spencer Clip?
I will never not post a new Sterling Spencer clip if I have the opportunity. Funny, creative, and a damn good surfer, and always an entertaining watch, no matter how small the surf. There's a sweet Stones cover on this one too.
9. Kalani Robb Surfs Trestles With Kelly
Oh look, it's the man with the greatest Taylor Steele section of all time (Kalani Robb in The Show (probably not true, but it certainly was for 10-year-old me)) surfing Lower Trestles with the injured Kelly Slater. Get better soon, Kelly.
10. Your Guide To Uluwatu
While we're lounging at home tonight and over the weekend, we might as well get a good understanding of what we're looking at. And who better to give it to us than Garut Widiarta, a legend of the Bukit Peninsula.
P.S. It's World Oceans Day today.
If you're in Melbourne this weekend, go down to Fed Square and take a gander at this wonderful activation Corona Aus have put together, a wave of waste to raise awareness for marine plastic pollution. "1500 kilograms of plastic waste enters Australian oceans every single hour, and this is what it looks like."
You can find more info on how you can help protect paradise at 100islandprotected.com
And that was this week in surfing. Have a good/long weekend everyone. Go Ben Cunnington.
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Jonathan Gubbins Scores
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