France leaves a few by the wayside.
It seems Ethan Ewing does have a little bit more to give, even at this late stage in his rookie year. Sitting at 35 on the Jeep Leaderboard, he’s had a dismal year thus far, with very few flashes of brilliance. Six x 25th places and 2 x 13th place finishes is not a great year for anyone, and it was heartening to see him win his heat against Caio Ibelli and Julian Wilson in round one. His stand-out ride, that banked him a heat score of 8.4 was a loose and lithe effort in the pounding La Grav surf that wasn’t actually reminiscent of a young Andy Irons, but was reminiscent of any highly talented young surfer who has found his sea legs and wants to redeem himself by showing the world his class. His performance did have one ripple effect, as third place went to a title contender.
Lying tied 35th with Ewing is the ever-popular Josh Kerr, and he came out swinging in his first round heat against Wilko and Wiggolly. Adorned in a wonderful yellow wetsuit he was straight into it in those thundering right-handers and was soon flying through the air for one of the biggest, yellowest alley-oop attempts ever, and it looked like he was going to stick it before he baulked at the landing. That move might have changed his life, and he’s going to replay it over and over again. Could he have made it? Who knows? The commentators were just so stoked to see such a massive attempt, but he didn't make it, and the tie was broken, with Ewing going up the Jeep Leaderboard and Kerrzy going down, and out…
“It’s great to have my family here,’ said a visibly bummed Kerrzy, who is going to have some time to think over the next few days.
One surfer who stuck possibly the move of the day was young Italo Ferreira. He was high-lining a big froth monster when he found a lip and launched and rotated for a huge backhand punt with no grab that, combined with a big outside hack, saw him awarded 9.5 points. It wasn't enough, but it was an incredible move that showed the world what he is all about. He acknowledged the move by taking a polite bow on the beach, even though John John took him out with one crazy forehand slob air, throwing total caution to the wind.
Talking about bowing, in round two, world title contender Julian Wilson bowed out of the race, Julian came up short, despite having everything in the book, and fell off on a few of the good waves for his worst result the whole season.
Filipe Toledo was another who bowed out, and he was unhappy about it. He suffered an injury, possibly as a result of a big jet ski jolt, and was eliminated by a rampant Miguel Pupo, and although he wasn't really in the title run, holding a few poor results events, it was a blow to the young surfer with two CT wins behind him already this season.
Quiksilver Pro France Round 1 Results:
Heat 1: Stuart Kennedy 12.00, Adriano de Souza 10.77, Conner Coffin 6.33
Heat 2: Nat Young 11.00, Bede Durbidge 9.17, Owen Wright 7.20
Heat 3: Matt Wilkinson 13.77, Wiggolly Dantas 12.50, Josh Kerr 10.76
Heat 4: Ethan Ewing 15.57, Caio Ibelli 15.33, Julian Wilson 9.13
Heat 5: John John Florence 15.67, Italo Ferreira 15.60, Keanu Asing 5.10
Heat 6: Jordy Smith 16.10, Marc Lacomare 12.70, Kanoa Igarashi 10.47
Heat 7: Joan Duru 18.00, Filipe Toledo 11.43, Miguel Pupo 9.14
Heat 8: Gabriel Medina 15.86, Jeremy Flores 15.27, Leonardo Fioravanti 13.26
Heat 9: Joel Parkinson 13.20, Jack Freestone 11.96, Michel Bourez 11.40
Heat 10: Sebastian Zietz 12.74, Jadson Andre 10.74, Connor O'Leary 10.57
Heat 11: Ian Gouveia 15.57, Mick Fanning 15.27, Frederico Morais 12.16
Heat 12: Adrian Buchan 15.60, Kolohe Andino 10.63, Ezekiel Lau 10.60
Quiksilver Pro France Round 2 Results:
Heat 1: Marc Lacomare 13.27 def. Julian Wilson 12.23
Heat 2: Owen Wright 13.60 def. Keanu Asing 11.17
Heat 3: Adriano de Souza 15.97 def. Josh Kerr 13.00
Heat 4: Miguel Pupo 12.27 def. Filipe Toledo 8.50
Heat 5: Leonardo Fioravanti 14.60 def. Connor O'Leary 11.87
Heat 6: Frederico Morais 15.26 def. Jack Freestone 11.37
Heat 7: Kolohe Andino 13.50 def. Jadson Andre 12.60
Heat 8: Mick Fanning (13.20 def. Ezekiel Lau 12.84
Remaining Quiksilver Pro France Round 2 Match-Ups:
Heat 9: Michel Bourez vs. Kanoa Igarashi
Heat 10: Jeremy Flores vs. Italo Ferreira
Heat 11: Conner Coffin vs.Caio Ibelli
Heat 12: Bede Durbidge vs. Wiggolly Dantas