Thursday marked the third consecutive “lazy day” at the Volcom Fiji Pro. Since Sunday the competition has been suspended with two heats left to surf in the second round. All surf fans are left with is a growing sense of restlessness and this short clip of day-two highlights. What’s remarkable about this highlight reel is the perspective: The viewer has at least some sense of how fast, steep, and violent the waves at Cloudbreak are. These guys are taming wilds.
And so far Red Bull ambassador’s have had a strong showing. Jordy Smith, Adriano De Souza, and two-time world champ Mick Fanning won their first-round heats and advanced to round three. Julian Wilson struggled in the first round but returned next day and posted a two-wave total score of 18.57, the highest second round heat score so far.
“I had a tough time out there in my heat yesterday so I really wanted to get this heat going today," Wilson (pictured below) said after his heat. "It felt good to get that first wave at the start and I was glad that I could back it up with another one."
The competition will likely resume on Friday when a massive swell is predicted to hit Fiji. The question surf wonks are wrestling with now is where to hold the contest: at Cloudbreak, where the waves are expected perfect but in the 20-foot range, or a few miles away at the break Restaurants, where the waves will be six to eight feet and ulta perfect and far more conducive to holding a World Tour competition.
An on-going poll at Surfline.com (the popular surf forecasting website) reflects that roughly 75 percent of surf fans would rather see the contest continue at Cloudbreak in 20-foot surf.
"I don't think there's an issue with any of the surfers not wanting to paddle out at big Cloudbreak," explained surfers' representative Kieren Perrow. "It's just that when you're talking about a contest, it's an entirely different story."
Perrow refers to Code Red day at Teahupo'o and how much time passed between the huge waves. "If Cloudbreak really is going to be as big as everyone is saying, we'd have to run, like, hour-long heats just to get enough waves ridden," he said.
Despite public ASP officials have intimated that the contest will be held at Restaurants. "The call has been made," ASP World Tour manager Renato Hickel said. "Restaurants is going to be firing, and I think the guys want to surf there."
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