Big Gnarly Tube / Photo: Brian Bielman
The last two heats of Round 2 entered the water to be greeted by some of the biggest and most spectacular waves ever seen in ASP history. Australian’s Bede Durbidge and Adam Melling were the first test pilots and played cat and mouse throughout the heat. Durbidge edged out Melling with some committed hacks on the huge waves.
Bede Durbidge/ Photo: Brian Bielman
Next up Brazilian Raoni Monteiro raised the bar with an outstanding tube ride only to be clipped as he attempted to exit. Injuring his knee he was forced to return to the boat. Raoni was rewarded with a 7.67 but it was not enough to advance against Kai Otton. Otton thrilled the crowd in the channel charging into a massive beast in the closing minutes, despite having already won the heat.
At the conclusion of Round 2, competition went on hold then was ultimately called off due to bad winds making for extremely dangerous conditions.
“It was really difficult to surf earlier when they called off the contest,” commented 11-time World Champ Kelly Slater, “It looked really good but it was a different story when you were out there with the huge bumps coming up the waves.”
After the call was made to stop the contest, the wind calmed, the swell increased and the world’s best big wave riders took to the lineup along with a handful of World Tour surfers for a history-making free surf session.
The Volcom Fiji Pro cameras kept rolling and the world watched some of the most amazing rides to ever go down at Cloudbreak.
Dave Wassel / Photo: Brian Bielman
“Today we saw some of the most experienced big wave riders in the world get the waves of their lives.” Slater continued, “This day will go down in history for sure.”
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