Fantasy Surfer Picks for the 2013 Billabong Pro Tahiti

The Billabong Pro Tahiti kicks off its waiting period August 15 and runs through August 26. The venue is the inimitable lefts of Teahupoo — a wave that when it’s small is still technical enough to command the utmost respect from those brave enough to attempt it. But when it’s big, well, it’s a wave that will draw out every ounce of a surfer’s concentration, ability, and especially courage (click on the link for the Code Red film below for an idea). One misstep and a surfer is caught between a meters-thick wall of water bearing down on him, with only a couple of feet of ocean to cushion the fall onto razor-sharp reef. The name of the game at Teahupoo is pits; dropping in as late, setting a line as quickly, getting barreled as deeply, riding the foam-ball as expertly, and getting spit out as spectacularly as humanly possible.

I think the group I have picked for my Fantasy Surfer team all have what it takes to put on a great show. As you probably already know, Fantasy Surfer gives each player $50,000,000 to create a team of eight surfers. Each surfer has a monetary amount assigned to him based on his current ranking on the ASP World Championship Tour. When compiling my team I looked at past statistics over the 13 years of contests, and tried to figure out who had the best chance of making it to the Quarterfinals or better. My picks are:

John John Florence ($8,500,000): Florence cut his teeth on Pipeline, which, while a different wave, is wholly analogous to Teahupoo. If Pipeline is THE big, hollow left then Chopes is its younger, crazier brother. Though last year was Florence’s first time competing at the break, he took third — barely losing out to Joel Parkinson, who was on fire in his race to his first World Title. Florence has the technical game, the experience in the barrel, and most importantly the ability to tune everything out and just go.

C.J. Hobgood ($8,250,000): If you are going to have a contest at a big, hollow left like this then not having this goofy-foot on your team is a huge mistake. C.J. shows at Chopes almost as much as Kelly Slater. In fact, after Slater, he is the most acclaimed man at the break. C.J. has made it to the Quarters or better seven of the 13 years the contest has run. He won it in ’04; came in second in ’99, ’01, and ’10; placed third in ’08; and took fifth last year.

Jeremy Flores ($7,500,000): Flores has made the Quarters the last two years running, and took third in ’09. While he certainly holds his own in Tahiti, I couldn’t help but be influenced by Flores’ run at Pipe when it was big a few years back. In ’10, Flores won Pipe, and did so by beating C.J., Taj Burrow, Owen Wright, and Kelly Slater in man-on-man heats. If you can face off against those guys in critical lefts, then I’m going to put you on my team.

Gabriel Medina ($7,500,000): This one is a gut feeling more than anything. Currently sitting in 16th place on the tour, Medina is having an off year. But he did place fifth last year at this venue, and I think he’s going to show. The kid has the talent, as he proved across his mid-year entry in ’11 when he won two of the remaining five events, and through the back half of the tour last year where he had five Quarters or better finishes. Medina needs a venue that has the potential to be as dynamic as he is, and if things line up I expect him to shine here.

Damien Hobgood ($4,750,000): When you have a solid left and want a result, bet on a Hobgood. Damo won the event in ’07, took second in ’05, and has placed ninth in three of the last four years at Chopes. I am not sure which brother has logged more time pitted in South Pacific barrels, which is why I have both the Hobgoods on my team.

Sebastian Zietz ($5,750,000): Seabass is getting the same Hawai’ian push that both Florence and Flores got. Seabass knows what it takes to take off late and plant himself deep in heaving lefthanders. Though he doesn’t have a result in Tahiti yet, he made it to and just barely lost in the Quarters of Pipe last year, after besting Travis Logie, John John Florence, Damien Hobgood, and Dane Reynolds.

Freddy Patacchia ($3,750,000): Freddy P is yet another pull from Hawai’i for my Tahitian Dream Team. He took ninth in ’11, fifth in ’10, and second in ’06 at Teahupoo, and he just loves this kind of wave. Given the price, I couldn’t pass him up. Consistently a wild-card into events over the last couple of years due to others’ injuries, Freddy P finally re-qualified this year only to start off missing the first third of the tour due to his own injury. He’s coming back strong after a couple of mediocre results in the last two events, thirteenth and ninth, and he’s going to be looking to prove himself and put up a strong showing here.

Kieren Perrow ($3,750,000): With just a little bit of money left, and my main guys picked, it came down to either Perrow or Matt Wilkinson. KP has placed ninth at Teahupoo twice, last year and in ’09, which trumps Wilko’s fifth in ’11.

There is one major player that I have left off my team this time around. Kelly Slater has been on my team for every event up until this one, and he’s the most decorated surfer at Teahupoo, winning it in ’00, ’03, ’05, and ’11; and placing third in ’04, ’06, and ’10. He may be the best contender, but I got both Hobgoods for almost the same price as one Slater.

As always, find me on Fantasy Surfer and shoot me a line. Though the forecast only calls for six to eight feet across the first few days with a falling swell, I’m keeping my fingers crossed for a repeat of ’11.

 

www.billabongpro.com

www.fantasysurfer.com

www.aspworldtour.com

http://youtu.be/uIBgWI_BTyM (Code Red Film)

Bo Bacot grew up surfing up and down the Grand Strand. For 25 years, he would sneak in a session whenever he could: before and after school, lunch breaks from work, weekends, weekdays, whenever.  Now that he’s moved back to Tennessee to further his education, Bo thinks about the ocean perhaps more than he ever did when it was in his backyard. If asked, Bo will proudly proclaim that he is the best surfer living in Knoxville, TN.

Comments

comments

Birds split doubleheader, return to open homestand

Birds split doubleheader, return to open homestandThe Myrtle Beach Pelicans split a doubleheader Sunday with the [more]

Local track athletes capture first at S.C. Junior Olympics

Local track athletes capture first at S.C. Junior OlympicsThe Myrtle Beach Track & Field Club played host to [more]

Native son Drew Brophy returns for art retrospective

Native son Drew Brophy returns for art retrospectiveThe Myrtle Beach Art museum drew over a thousand folks [more]

Drew turns softball skills into memorable summer

Drew turns softball skills into memorable summerOlivia Drew was crying, and her mother, Brittany Drew, was [more]

Pelicans limited to one hit as offensive woes continue

Pelicans limited to one hit as offensive woes continueAlex Lange fired six excellent innings Thursday, but the Myrtle [more]

All-County Track & Field: Second shots strike silver

All-County Track & Field: Second shots strike silverThe frontrunners in this year's My Horry News All-County Girls [more]

Mutiny gives Strand fans small taste of World Cup

Mutiny gives Strand fans small taste of World CupAmerican soccer fans don't have a rooting interest in this [more]

Pelicans open second half with eye on playoff streak

Pelicans open second half with eye on playoff streakThe Myrtle Beach Pelicans begin the second half of the [more]

Pelicans help propel South to victory in All-Star Game

Pelicans help propel South to victory in All-Star GameA pair of Myrtle Beach Pelicans played key roles in [more]

NMB's Ballard, MB's Coble reconnect at North-South

NMB's Ballard, MB's Coble reconnect at North-SouthA pair of former teammates and rivals joined forces for [more]

Pelicans fail to finish .500 after losing first-half finale

Pelicans fail to finish .500 after losing first-half finaleThe Myrtle Beach Pelicans dropped their final game of the [more]

CCU's Biermann, Lancaster make All-American squad

CCU's Biermann, Lancaster make All-American squadCoastal Carolina shortstop Seth Lancaster and designated hitter Zach Biermann [more]

Ibarrondo comes to rescue to rally first-place Mutiny

Ibarrondo comes to rescue to rally first-place Mutiny The Myrtle Beach Mutiny needed a wake-up call late Saturday [more]

Pelicans split twinbill with Mudcats, play finale today

Pelicans split twinbill with Mudcats, play finale todayAfter the Myrtle Beach Pelicans fell 2-1 to the Carolina [more]

Pelicans lose fifth straight, play doubleheader today

Pelicans lose fifth straight, play doubleheader todayVictor Diaz's seven strong innings for the Carolina Mudcats were [more]

All-County Boys Tennis: Johnson, MB duo top list

All-County Boys Tennis: Johnson, MB duo top listThe future looks bright for the sport of high school [more]

Hess carves his way to Team USA surfing nod

Hess carves his way to Team USA surfing nodCarter Hess carved his way to a spot on the [more]

Pelicans' bullpen spoils Thompson's perfect start

Pelicans' bullpen spoils Thompson's perfect startAfter Keegan Thompson was removed following seven perfect innings for [more]

Piggot feasts, scores four goals to lead Mutiny win

Piggot feasts, scores four goals to lead Mutiny winThe Myrtle Beach Mutiny rolled to a 6-0 victory over [more]

CCU trio makes all-region; Lancaster an All-American

CCU trio makes all-region; Lancaster an All-AmericanCoastal Carolina shortstop Seth Lancaster was named to the Perfect [more]

Braves' icons Avery, Jones to appear at Pelicans game

Braves' icons Avery, Jones to appear at Pelicans gameThe Myrtle Beach Pelicans will welcome former MLB All-Stars and [more]

Coastal guard Labinowicz announces plan to transfer

Coastal guard Labinowicz announces plan to transferCoastal Carolina University men's basketball player Artur Labinowicz plans to [more]

Report: Myrtle Beach Bowl 'near lock' for 2020 kickoff

Report: Myrtle Beach Bowl 'near lock' for 2020 kickoffIn yet another development in the Grand Strand's booming sports [more]

Adaptive surfers depart for US Surfing Championship

Adaptive surfers depart for US Surfing ChampionshipLocal surfers, volunteers, and family members gathered at the Charleston [more]

All-County Boys Golf: MB's Jarman trades bat for club

All-County Boys Golf: MB's Jarman trades bat for clubIf things had worked out differently, Myrtle Beach High senior [more]

Birds split doubleheader, return to open homestand

Birds split doubleheader, return to open homestandThe Myrtle Beach Pelicans split a doubleheader Sunday with the [more]

Local track athletes capture first at S.C. Junior Olympics

Local track athletes capture first at S.C. Junior OlympicsThe Myrtle Beach Track & Field Club played host to [more]

One response to “Fantasy Surfer Picks for the 2013 Billabong Pro Tahiti”

  1. Hap says:

    Never thought I would see another ex-Grand Strander covering the ASP and making Fantasy Surfer picks while buried in the depths of SEC country. Good stuff. Is there a Tennessee Valley Surfing Association that I missed? I might actually make a heat in the Birmingham region.

    My not as in depth picks: http://prosurfingobserver.com/2013/08/15/fantasy-surfer-picks-billabong-pro-tahiti/

    I kinda like having two Hobgoods instead of Slater and one Hobgood, but I have to have the King in there.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

© 2018 Grand Strand Sports Report · RSS
Myrtle Beach Web Design
Kayaking in Myrtle Beach