John John Wins The 2015 Volcom Pipe Pro

3 Feb 2015 0 Share

John John found the bombs in the final. (Reed)

John John found the bombs in the final. (Reed)

Day 3 of The Volcom Pipe Pro

By Vaughan Blakey

“Good morning Vaughany B and happy finals day to you,” says WSL commentator Joe Turpel, the happiest, friendliest, most decent, genuine, kind hearted man you could ever meet in your life. He’s standing in the front yard of the Volcom House sipping a coffee and just the sight of him makes me feel good. He makes me want to invent a little Joe Turpel doll that I can sit next to my bed so that if I wake up and feel like it’s gonna be a crappy day I can just pull the string on my happy Joe doll and it’ll say something like “Man, you’re looking good today” or “Here’s trouble… only kidding, it’s so nice to see you” or “Good morning Vaughany B and happy finals day to you!”

A side view of the levitating speed of JJF. (Bielmann)

A side view of the levitating speed of JJF. (Bielmann)

Finals day may as well be Christmas day to Joe but he’d not be the only one feeling the festive cheer by the time the Volcom Pipe Pro wrapped up just before lunch. The day would feature plenty of presents for both surfers and spectators alike with hastily wrapped parcels of wonky deep Backdoor pits, a wonderful appearance by Slater Clause gifting the event it’s only 10 point ride in the quarters, and a stirring rendition of Bing Crosby’s “I’m dreaming of a snowy white haired Volcom Pipe Pro Christmas win” by John John Florence in the final. The spirit of Mele Kalikimaka was most certainly in the air.

Good ol' Slater Clause delivers the only 10 of the event a month after Christmas. (Bielmann)

Good ol' Slater Clause delivers the only 10 of the event a month after Christmas. (Bielmann)

The day started with quarter finals action and as expected it was John John and Kelly who looked most dangerous. John John’s speed on the wave face at the moment is simply on a different level to every other guy in the contest, and probably the world. There were times when he slid across wind affected Backdoor like a bar of soap shot from a bazooka on a frozen lake. Where most guys, Slater included, draw speed from drive, John John’s ability to almost hover makes the impossibly deep possible, the ridiculously late an hour early and the end bowl ramp a NASA space shuttle launching pad. His air to flats in the final is a good sign of things to come on this year’s WCT. You watching this Medina?

Brother was unlucky not to make the final and is looking deadly in 2015. (Reed)

Brother was unlucky not to make the final and is looking deadly in 2015. (Reed)

Slater finished fourth in the final but looked as fresh as a field full of daisies buzzing with bees and milk giving cows and rainbows and summer rain throughout the entire comp. You can pretty much end any speculation about whether or not he’ll do the tour this year. Slater surfed the entire event in the heats that followed John John’s and played “anything you can do I can do better” in each. The 11 time World Champ looks inspired by the coming of age of yet another generation and having not won an event at all last season, has all the motivation he needs to slap Snapper square in the face with a pillow case full of Purps cans.

A first and a second in the last two events held at Pipeline. Go Mase Ho! (Reed)

A first and a second in the last two events held at Pipeline. Go Mase Ho! (Reed)

It’s also worth noting the performances of Kolohe Andino and Mason Ho. Kolohe is tapping some magic form on the back of a relaxed confidence that he simply did not have in his first two years on tour. Expect him to win a major this year and give a victory speech in a voice deeper than the Lombok Strait. Mason Ho meanwhile should be on tour right now. The guy is a joy to watch, has mad chops in size, a rail game, mean air stylings and isn’t scared to throw down a soul arch or switch foot from time to time. He reminds us all that surfing is fun and the big league heats could use a little of that. It’s at least a year off but I’ve already got my “GO HO!” t-shirt printed up for Snapper 2016.

Winners are grinners chicken dinners. (Morrisey)

Winners are grinners chicken dinners. (Morrisey)

So that’s it, the first WSL (Andre) 3000 is out of the way for the year. What questions did the Volcom Pipe Pro raise as we head into the first CT event at Snapper? I came up with the following: Can John John challenge for the Title? Why can’t Mason Ho be given a wildcard into every event? Will Gabby Medina still be wearing springsuits? How much will my room service bill be back at the Turtle Bay Resort? How many Mai Tais is too many? Whatever happened to The Henderson Kids? I loved that show. Why am I sitting here typing when Volcom just cracked a keg in the backyard?

Tags: hawaii , pipe , pipeline , vaughany , yay (create Alert from these tags)

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