It’s a very important victory!
There are so many events around the world that aspiring WQS surfers need to compete in if they hope to qualify for the big league. These are the events where surfers can rack up the points, and move towards their goal of cracking the Championship Tour.
However, there are other events that may be even more important for different reasons. Take for example, the Pipe Invitational. Win this event and you get a shot at the Billabong Pipe Masters, but more than this; win at Pipe in real conditions and you get a big cup of respect from many influential people. Hawaiian legends, competitors, judges, journalists and the general world of surfing are all going to tip their cap your way. A victory at Pipe is the real deal. In 2015 young Jack Robinson won the event by only surfing one wave – this one …
It was a big eye-opener, and the world saw that the young kid was determined to do it in the big stuff.
Now, just over a year later, an older, fuller and more mature Mr. Robinson has just taken his maiden QS win at the Sunset Open. If you’re able to hold your own at Pipe as well as Sunset, you are set to be a formidable threat on the world tour. Just ask Shaun Tomson.
In a recent interview on surfline.com Shaun made some comments that are relevant to all hungry QS surfers. In order to succeed as a pro surfer, Shaun believes that salvation lies in Hawaii, and only three breaks. “Surf stoked, every day, at one of these three breaks: Pipeline, Sunset and Haleiwa,” reckons Shaun. “Nowhere else matters. Cop the hammerings, survive the smashings, paddle back out, and get blown out of deep barrels — and you will become a man who has the confidence to take on any wave and any surfer, anywhere.”
For a maiden QS win, one could not ask for anything better than a win at Sunset. It proves so much, and it will be a massive confidence booster for Jack. Second placed Hawaiian upstart Finn McGill echoed Shaun Tomson’s perspective in a post - event interview.
“I knew that me and Jack actually kind of had an advantage, because he comes out every winter, all winter,” said McGill. “Jack’s really good out here and we know the reef really well, so I kind of knew we had an advantage to finding the waves and knowing what they were going to do.”
Jack Robinson is that surfer who knows what he has to do, and hanging out in Hawaii all winter is his game, much like Kong used to do in his heyday. And he won the Triple Crown in 1987 and 1989 as a result. The Hawaiian thing – spending time and energy at those three breaks – is something that is so very simple yet so often bypassed for an easy season back home. These days every WQS surfer is talented enough to win in three-foot beach-break conditions, to bust big airs and to do the tricks that are needed for such wins, but so very few of these surfers have got what it takes to do it in Hawaii, or in other waves of consequence.
There might be a bunch of chargers in the QS pack, but out of those chargers, how many are well versed in the myriad of conditions that waves like Pipe and Sunset can produce? Jack’s one of them, and he’s set to reap the rewards.