Haleiwa, O`ahu, HAWAI`I - (Monday, November 20, 2000) -- It was a truly Hawaiian Pro at Haleiwa's Ali`i Beach Park with Sunny Garcia and Bonga Perkins taking
first place in the G-Shock Hawaiian Pro and Bear Hawaiian Pro Longboard
Invitational respectively. Proving that it's tough to beat a Hawaiian in their
home waters, Garcia led an all-Hawaiian final line-up and the longboard went
one-two with Perkins closely followed by Lance Ho`okano.
Both Garcia and Perkins were untouchable as they carved their way through the rounds. Garcia even posted the highest heat score of the entire competition in the final, with 23.25 points out of a possible 30. While the international contenders did their best to find a winning combination of equipment, wave selection and maneuvers, their best was not enough when pitted against the support of a home crowd, local knowledge and fired-up talent.
Haleiwa served up the best conditions of the week right on time today, 4-8 foot waves and stiff off-shore winds opening up a full range of scores for competitors. Waves hung in for the duration of the day, allowing Garcia (Kaua`i) to fully deliver in the final, his best three waves coming in at 8.75, 8.0. 6.5. Runner-up Kaipo Jaquias (Waipahu) came close early on with his first wave a near-perfect 9.0, but his scores fell away after that. Third place was Brian Pacheco (Honolulu), and Kalani Robb (Kapolei) was fourth.
"I was just happy to get to surf in an all-Hawaiian final," Garcia, 30, said. "Those are the guys I hang out with all the time, so it was insane. There was no hassling and everybody was just catching waves. Fortunately for me, I had three good ones while everyone else just had one or two.
"It was real important for me to win here in Hawai`i, in front of my family and a home crowd.
"I'm not planning on retiring any time soon. And now, hopefully with me being president of the WPS (World Professional Surfers) I'll be able to bring up the prize money and make the sport a lot more lucrative. Hopefully by the time I leave pro surfing it will be looked at as a professional sport.
"So for all you people that think we're just bums and we're lazy, eat your hearts out, because we're making a good living doing what we love to do!"
In just its third year, the Bear Longboard Invitational set a new pace, with a series of rounds held in super challenging conditions. The field included seven world longboarding champions, top rated professionals from around the world and a group of hand-picked wildcards playing spoilers to the pack.
"Last year I was second and this year I got first. I'll take it," said Perkins. "I got that last wave off of Lance and it paid off big. I hate nail-biters, but that was the prime example. I would have to say my last wave was the best that was the one that put me ahead.
"I always feel comfortable at this break. Everybody at this level was surfing strong. There were no favorites coming into this event. There were a few shock competitors who went down early."
Behind Perkins and Ho`okano today, two US Mainland surfers pulled up the remaining placings with Cody Simpkins (Newport, CA.) in third and Josh Baxter (San Clemente, CA.) in fourth.
While this event does not count towards a world title, it is viewed by the competitors as the proving ground for future world champs, given that they must perform in much bigger waves and more testing conditions than on offer elsewhere.
The Vans G-Shock Triple Crown of Surfing now moves along the North Shore of O`ahu to Sunset Beach, which will host the men's Rip Curl Cup and Quiksilver Roxy Pro, November 24 to December 7. The third and final stop of the Series is the 30th anniversary Mountain Dew Gerry Lopez Pipeline Masters, at Pipeline, December 8-21.
The Vans G-Shock Triple Crown of Surfing is made possible through the proud support of Vans, Mountain Dew, G-Shock, PlayStation, Ford Ranger, Right Guard Xtreme Sport, Rolling Stone, ESPN, Rip Curl, Quiksilver Roxy, Billabong, Surfrider Foundation, the Hawaii Visitors Bureau, and the ASP.
Check out all the latest on http://www.swell.com offering live stream feeds of the day's events, along with all the scores, results and images of the events.
For further information:
Back to The Beach
Last Modified: Tuesday - 20001121.10:48 EST
Copyright © 1995-2000 Triple Crown Of Surfing
Produced OnLine by HoloHolo Internet Publishing, all rights reserved