Oh, it’s on. After some layday R&R, the Four Seasons Maldives Surfing Champions Trophy kicked off at Sultans today in some racy overhead runners, just the right kind of waves for the first of the three shortboard categories: the Singlefin Division. And as fate would have it, the cosmos provided a twisted type of rerun of the 2012 Pipeline Masters final pitting Parko against Josh Kerr. You know, the one where Parko beat lifelong friend Kerr to win his world title? Yeah. That one.
But the Universe, or perhaps Four Seasons sun, shined down rays of glory upon the reigning Four Seasons Maldives Surfing Champions Trophy champ Josh Kerr, the man beating Parko — and Wilko in the semis before him — to win the Singlefin division.
Sure, one might’ve out their shekels on Parkinson to win this particular division, as he’s long been considered one of THE most stylish surfers of his generation. Plus, Parkinson put on a high performance display from the start in the final, with a big aerial on his opening wave to lock in a 7.33, backed up soon after with an 8.43 to place paw on the trophy by the halfway mark.
But maybe Kerr’s wife (like the others there) were meditating on the outcome (you know, to come back again next year) and Kerr soon flared back with an 8.50 for a series of explosive maneuvers, then a 7.90 for a huge section hit and a string of syrupy turns down the line, to win the day in the dying minutes and move to the top of the leaderboard with the twin-fin and thruster divisions still to run.
“To come to Four Seasons, score pumping waves on the first day and take the win, it doesn’t really get much better!” said a beaming Kerr after the final. “The vibe is great but we’re all old competitive souls so once the contest jersey goes on we want to win. Joel and I grew up in the same Boardriders club; he’s older than me, was always in the spotlight and has definitely got the better head-to-head record, which makes this win even sweeter.”
“I really enjoyed today,” said Parkinson. “The singlefin is a challenge — it shows your flaws, but it is so fun to ride. I’ve told (two-time winner) Taj Burrow for years that I wanted to get into this event, and now I can see why he loves it here so much. This is my type of contest, no pressure, good friends and a lot of fun with my family, living in luxury. I’m really excited for the twin-fin now, I feel like it should be my strongest division, so hopefully I can snare a win there and get a little bit closer to being invited back here!”
Not for lack of effort, Kerr’s semifinals with longtime Championship Tour sparring partner Matt Wilkinson was a bit a barn-burner as well, Wilkinson actually with the standout moment, pulling an incredible reentry that earned him a 6.83, confirming that the goofyfooter still has one of the best backhands in surfing. “That was the most dynamic turn that anyone has ever done on a single-fin!” Kerr said post-heat.
As Wiggolly Dantas had to withdraw from the event last minute because of passport issues, Wilkinson and Fayaz received first round walk-throughs today. Meanwhile, in the second three-man round one heat, Kerr and Parkinson narrowly accounted for Hawaiian waterman and multi-board phenomenon Kai Lenny, on their way to the semifinals.
*Tune in soon for the twinnies!
Singlefin Division Results
1. Josh Kerr (AUS)
2. Joel Parkinson (AUS)
3. Matt Wilkinson (AUS) equal with Mohamed Fayaz (MDV)
5. Kai Lenny (HAW)
2019 FS Maldives Surfing Champions Trophy Leaderboard
Josh Kerr (AUS) 1000pts
Joel Parkinson (AUS) 900pts
Matt Wilkinson (AUS) 800pts
Mohamed Fayaz (MDV) 800pts
Kai Lenny (HAW) 700pts
Full details are available at the link below:
Source URL: Bing News :