Newly formed blood feuds between Griffin Colapinto and João Chianca and Bettylou Sakura Johnson and Carissa Moore!
With the nonstop action over the year, and this being the time of year to rehash ‘em, one would be forgiven for missing out on currently unfolding events which are going to play out on tour next year.
As controversy surrounded the Vans Pipe Masters before, during and after the event, two events unfolded that flew under the radar, newly formed blood feuds between Griffin Colapinto and João Chianca, and Bettylou Sakura Johnson and Carissa Moore.
Let’s examine Griffin and João (and therefore all of Brazil).
You might recall the finals day crescendo, two-to-three-foot mini-Backdoor and grom Pipe.
With one hundred thousand dollars on the line for the winner, the no-priority format was sure to be tested, and tested it was.
João, a newly minted CT competitor for next year is a young male of uncommon beauty, a toy boy, a seducer, god, a winged angel, and he was within reach of attaining a prize purse almost twenty times the average Brazilian salary.
That sorta money drives he and his peers on tour, which translates into hyper-aggressive surfing and tactics. And, with a no priority heat, he was not to be denied.
The only problem was Griffin Colapinto.
Griffin is a hyper-competitive graduate from the school of sibling rivalry and infamous crusher of Brazilian dreams. Griff was not about to take the paddle battling lightly and engaged with João as he stalked the lineup.
At one point, things got extremely tense as paddles were battled and feet kicking in the face commenced, which ultimately allowed Balaram the winning wave.
Now while this may not have developed into death threats to Griff from a whole country, as per the hysteria from Filipe Toledo fans, one wonders if João had a chip on his shoulder for the humiliation dealt to Filipe in El Salvador in conditions he should be winning in his sleep.
And one wonders not if, but when, this will boil over in a future heat next year?
One also hopes that Griff’s mom, affectionately known as “Momma Bear”, does not get once again sucked into the black hole of keyboard wars.
On here and other forums she was berated and ridiculed, even called “batshit crazy”.
I would copy and paste such examples, but I am way too lazy to dig up the archives for that.
She ain’t batshit crazy for defending her son but she is batshit crazy for trying to reason with the BG comment crew.
That is a losing battle right there.
Now for the other newly formed blood feud between two girls a mother could only hope her son might marry some day, Carrissa and Bettylou.
Carissa, fresh off the wave of the contest, was poised to take her rightful prize.
Usually well-mannered and positive, Carissa appeared agitated as her younger rival shadowed her like an internet stalker.
Maybe it was the loss on Finals Day to a stylish but way less committed in heavy surf Stephanie Gilmore. She would have been crowned champion in any other alternate reality that didn’t include ELO, but she seemed intent on not letting history repeat itself.
But as history was indeed repeating itself, and as the waves sputtered to complete crap, the no-priority rule once again reared its grotesque head as she was called for interference on what was the only chance left to defeat Molly Pinkum, who was ahead on the merits of a bust-through-the-mush barrel on a small Pipe wave.
Whether Bettylou shadowed Carrissa and dropped in behind to deny her glory or Carissa dropped in ruthlessly to deny Bettylou her first chance at such glory is an open question, but the tension was obvious as not only did Carissa drop in, but was also noticeably absent after as the three other contenders gathered round for an interview with Mahina Florence.
Watching the girls go at it is not only what we as fans want to see, but outright demand as a condition for equal pay. That and some serious ball clenching charging in conditions of consequence.
Bettylou is on the map making statements and Carissa’s misfortunes are sure to translate into ruthless squashing of competitors dreams.
Watch this space!