And despite catastrophic facial wounds, says he wants to be back for Teahupoo…
Last Friday, June 19, world number 10 Jeremy Flores face-planted into the reef in Sumbawa, Indonesia.
In four-to-five-foot low-tide waves at Lakey Peak, Jeremy tasted a little rock after… what… a tube gone awry? A mangled takeoff?
“A fucken air,” he says. “All frothing to learn all these new tricks and ended up landing head-first onto dry reef.”
When an emergency helicopter came to take him to the BIMC hospital in Bali, Jeremy posted a photo (the one on the left above) on his Instagram account (@floresjeremy) with the message: “Worst 24h ever. Hit my head on the reef in the middle of no where in Indo, lost My memories for more than an hour…deep cuts all over My head & face… 24h later the Helicopter finally came get me to take me to an international hospital where i just got 2h of surgery on My face…the good news is there is no fracture…I would post a picture of My actual face but it would choc everyone so i won’t lol #nevergiveup”
So what happened after he hit the reef?
“I lost my memory for an hour and twenty minutes,” he says. “Didn’t where I was or who I was. Wiggolly Dantas and Jake Paterson were there to hold me and take me back to land where I waited 20 hours for a chopper to come pick me up. So I had to stay up all night ’cause I wasn’t sure if I could sleep. I was super scared to lose my memory again. Wiggolly was there all night making sure I was alright. Then the next day, the chopper finally came and took me to the hospital where I finally had surgery on my face.”
Them sure is deep cuts.
“Thirty stitches on and around my face,” says Jeremy. “No major brain damage.”
Right now, Jeremy is back in France and doing tests there “’cause there are small fractures in two different places on my face, under my eye and on my cheek.”
I ask, have you lost your looks?
“I was putting pressure on the surgeon the whole time, telling him the whole time he better make me look good.”
Were you worried you might end up looking like Catherine Deneuve, the once-beautiful French actress now reduced to caricature? (Click here!)
“More like Frankenstein,” he says. “I’m still doing tests and MRI’s and shit. It’s pretty fucked but the cuts are healing super quick. Nothing if official yet but I’m hoping to be back for Teahupoo. But maybe sooner! Or later. Too early to say.”
In the meantime, here’s a little teaser from when Jeremy’s face was whole and he was ripping New Zealand.