Grab the stress ball.
Fans of professional surfing at its highest level could not be more excited for the upcoming Corona Open J-Bay which is set to kick off in South Africa in less than 48 hours. After a string of events featuring lackluster swell, the forecast for the Open is very promising, likely a Surfline 80 – 100ft, and wave-starved devotees are growing increasingly rabid. Can Filipe Toledo, for example, drive a dagger into the heart of his competition yet still lose the crown months later at Lower Trestles to an increasingly beefed up Italo Ferreira?
Will homegrown hero Jordy Smith cap a Joel Parkinson-lite career with an out the front win?
All that energy, passion, might just be for nothing, though, as it was revealed today that the World Surf League Senior Vice President of Tours and its Head of Competition is missing. Or not missing but refusing to leave site of the last stop of sunny Rio de Janeiro.
Taking to Instagram, Jessi Miley-Dyer declared, “Still here Rio. I’m never leaving Brazil.”
While enthusiasts thrilled at Miley-Dyer enjoying much-deserved “me time,” worry began to grow that she will not, in fact, make it to J-Bay in time for the Open.
If she left the pool this very minute, it would still take over thirty hours of fly time and that is just to Cape Town. A further seven-odd more hours of driving and/or hopping an ecologically sound helicopter next to surfing great Kelly Slater and family.
Still within the window but disciples are beginning to bite fingernails, nervously check watches every three minutes or so.
Without Miley-Dyer present, the event will not be able to be called “on” or “off” and left in a state of permanent flux.
Can this be scripted?
Is the World Surf League collapsing before our hungry eyes?
More as the story develops.