It’s the news no Julian Wilson fan wanted to hear. Injured in pre-season, six weeks out from the first event of the 2018 WSL Season. But that’s what greeted fans yesterday as they swiped through Instagram and were met with Jules delivering the heartache to his 751K followers.

“I have some not-very-good news to share. I’ve come undone on my mountain bike doing some cross-training at Glenrock national park in Newcastle on Friday evening. I went over the handlebars, landed square on my shoulder and ruptured the AC joint. It’s not going to require surgery (but) it’s extremely uncomfortable hence the bag of peas on my shoulder. There’s no timeframe on the recovery. I’ll take it one step at a time. I’ll be doing everything…injuries suck and forced rest is never fun but I’ll be back stronger and better!”

The injury will scuttle his appearance at Newcastle Surfest too, which would have been an opportunity to woo the crowd at his newly adopted home town. More importantly, the injury throws a cloud over his health for the first event of the WSL season, the Quiksilver Pro at Snapper Rocks.

Anyone who has suffered an AC shoulder injury can attest it can be a long road back to full health. However, with regular WSL medico, Chris Prosser, in his corner you can rest assured Jules will have no detail spared on his rehabilitation.

As the injury sinks in Jules will be questioning why chose mountain bike riding as a form of cross training. Putting his season in jeopardy, especially on the verge of becoming a fully-fledged contender for the world title, is huge for someone who has often failed to convert his superior free-surfing ability in heats.

2018 is already shaping up as a big year for Jules. On a personal level, it marks the arrival of his first child and putting down roots in Newy. Competitively, at 29, he knows it’s time he fulfils his destiny and secures a world title.

John John Florence had a stranglehold on his competitors last season, despite Jordy leading for most of the season, Jules left his world title run too late finishing with a career high third place result. As the competitive careers of Mick Fanning and Joel Parkinson taper off, Kelly recovers from injury and juggles business ventures a new guard is taking shape.

As a cyclone swell lights up the Gold Coast points, back-to-back world champion, John John Florence has shown up to kick start his season, passing up his spot in the Volcom Pipe Pro. No doubt watching the defending world champ cut laps at the sand-bottom miracle will be more than enough motivation for Jules to bounce back.

Tracks wishes Jules a speedy recovery.