New words and new faces and even a new energy embroider day one of the Quikilsver Pro…
The central myth of professional surfing is that people who don’t surf care. That if it was somehow jammed into a dada-esqure package of flashing lights and three-dimensional logos and multiple camera angles, hemstitched with lace, and festooned with chiffon, pro surfing would become as big as America’s NFL.
Let me tell you about day one at the… suddenly… biggest sport on earth! Come revel in the colour and noise and rhythm!
A handful of two-to-three footers promenaded down an acceptable sandbank and while round one is generally a garbage can of B and C-listers being trampled by the A-game, today it wrought its fullest energy as spectacle.
Joel Parkinson beat the comedian and part-time surfer Brett Simpson and the Brazilian Mugel Pupo, and he beat them so well, he was inclined to remind Rosy Hodge in his post-heat interview of his “questionable” second placing to Gabriel in 2014.
The gazelle-like Rosy had the temerity to ask Joel if he’s like to do better than the seconds he’s gotten in the past two Snapper events.
“I grew up surfing here and know what I want to see,” he growled.
Now into his third-year on tour, Sebastian Zeitz came and raised hell. A club sandwich thrown where most would delicately slice the rim scored a five though the debutant Ricardo Christie was easily despatched. Michel Bourez swayed to the languid rhythm of the waves though not with the same jazz as Zeitz.
Kelly lost to Fred Pattachia despite a carving 360 that the commentator Martin Potter rated as the “most difficult manoeuvre in the planet.” Potter added, “Not many humans on the planet can do that!” Who knew!
A John John Florence jam teased the term “layback dagger!” out of the ever-sublime Joey Turpel.
But the two moments of the day came when Ross Williams (whom BeachGrit regards as the best in the game, just click here for proof) described a turn of Mick Fanning’s as “straight gangsta!” and a Matt Banting turn as a “buttercup manoeuvre.”
The wildcard Dane Reynolds surfed in a heat with the Brazilians Gabriel Medina and Wiggoly Dantas but appeared vaguely disinterested and perhaps two kilograms over his best fighting weight. The tour has never fitted Reynolds well, despite his remarkable fourth place finish a few years ago, and he must stipulate in future contract negotiations that he doesn’t feel much like dancing in events anymore.
Jordy, Dusty, Bede (a surfer whom I’d take to bed) and Julian all surfed as if they’d spent the morning drinking fizz-water. Such energy! Each took the wave and deformed it as brutally as he could.
As I write, the women are tracing their own intimate journeys upon the little waves.
More tomorrow, I think! Dine before the pay-wall goes up!