It was a classic dual. Johnny W. vs. Bullo, vs. Scott Flores aka “Scrappy”. Representing a wide range of ages, the most local took the early lead. Bullo got several great rides early on, and it looked like a forgone conclusion that the guy who sees it the most would take it again. Then, in the last few minutes, the points aligned, and Johnny Weber caught a flurry of good rides. I switched positions right at this point, from barely in the dang shade of the rock, to the opposite position up the beach. I guess that shows what a change in perspective can do. My memory is lousy these days, and I’ve know this since I was 10, look mom, no “D’s”. But I recall one of his last waves was a tough wrap into a bottom box no bigger than than my knees. He nailed it, driving a long way, folded like only he can. I think that did it, but we will all learn for sure tonight at the party in 3 hours. After much eating and drinking beforehand with the crew.
Nothing, and I mean nothing, brings all the best riders together like the Cabo Classico. North America and Mexico are brothers in kind for a weekend that lasts a year until the next weekend in 2018. Thank you Diego, Jorge, and Alfredo Sr. and Jr. Chimy, Nick, Kane, and anyone else who helped in this contest. Your shade was the best place to be, thank you so, so much, I will never forget my small umbrella again.
I was actually kind of glad that it was not pumping like two years ago. I spent three terrifying days on the beach worrying that someone was going to get seriously hurt. This year was mellow by contrast, but equally challenging, in the sense that good rides were few and far between. At least that’s how it looked to me. Actually once the competition began, the shear creativity of the riders revealed dozens of gems.
Yesterday we hustled down early to Lovers to run the Pros. The plan being to come back to the hotel for the Amateurs. The plan was good, the wind held off, even blowing gently from the South, the 100’s of leaping stingrays were feeding on phytoplankton all over the place(I learned today from Jaime) and the sider was working noticeably better than the day before. The hunt for action kept the riders constantly moving between wraps at the secondary and siders starting next to the rocks.
Congratulations to all the riders. That second round of the Pros was brutal. Some really good riders were beat, and bummed, but some new faces emerged. How many times did I see a complete reversal of standings in the last few moments of a heat? Lady luck makes our sport a gamblers dream. The intense calculations, on the faces of the riders at the 5 minute and 3 minute countdowns is plain to see. Where do I stand, what are my odds, what do I need. You can’t always get what you want, but if you ask sometimes, you’ll get what you need. Pardon the inaccuracy of the lyrics.
Other cool stuff. Jack Howie prones out on a sider and stays with it to pop up to his feet and get the next best legal thing to sex. The judges all look at each other and simultaneously ask, was that legal indeed? YES! Of course, if you think about it. He never left his board, it was a legit way to keep going, and before the end of the contest I saw 4 or 5 other riders repeat the same strategy. Let’s just say, it was a tough sider to catch.
Jack also earned the highest score I gave that day. (5 being an average ride in that division,which for a pro is hardly average) He launched out the back in a rail grab and to his surprise pulled a full end over end rotation to land it dead flat on the water. It was the end over end which takes it way past the Westyloop which we have all seen a few times. That was worth an 8 on my card.
So here I am, waiting for the news. Looking forward to tonight. I have included a fair number of group shots. The sun having the magical power to get people to squeeze into a very small space. Shade and Cabo and some friendly competition. That’s about as good as it gets.
Photos by Laguna SoCal and Tex