Congratulations goes out to Volcom’s Joan Duru for qualifying for the prestigious 2017 World Surf League Tour! The 27 year old Frenchman’s main goal this past year was to qualify for the World Tour, and he’s done it! Ranking in at the #4 spot, just behind Frederico Morais, Ethan Ewing, and Connor O’Leary, Joan has earned his way to the big stage to compete with the world’s best. Expect to see Joan dominating at big barreling spots like Fiji, Teahupoo, and Pipeline, while unleashing his explosive backhand at spots such as Snapper Rocks, Bells Beach, and Lower Trestles! Catch up with Joan and his road to qualification with this exclusive interview below.

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JOAN DURU 2017 QUALIFICATION INTERVIEW


 

DO YOU HAVE ANY PASSIONS OR HOBBIES BESIDES SURFING?

I like to go mountain biking with my friends or my dad. Tasty beef ribs, some wine with my buddies or spending time with my girlfriend.

ON THE WQS (WORLD QUALIFYING SERIES) TOUR THIS YEAR, YOU SEEMED CALM AND RELAXED WITH GOOD RESULTS FOLLOWING. DID YOU CHANGE SOMETHING IN THE WAY YOU TRAIN?

I didn’t make any changes for a long time, and it seems that it just started working. I’m 100% dedicated to my work with Mayhem, a board sponsor I’ve been working with for one year now. I always had magic boards, which allowed me to mainly focus on the rest.

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photo: Andrew Christie

IS THAT WHAT WE USED TO CALL “MATURITY“ OR “GAINING EXPERIENCE“?

It’s true that priority establishment totally changed my life on the WQS. Priorities make it easier because you can wait for the best wave without being afraid of someone who will get through to the inside at the last minute. The only thing to focus on is trying not to fall down!

TELL US ABOUT YOUR STRONG MOMENTS DURING THE 2016 SEASON.

Starting with the second place at the Ballito Pro helped me a lot, as there were only a few prime events that year. And now, I’m glad, and more than happy that I made a semi final at Haleiwa despite the pressure of the qualification, but the good waves made it amazing!

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Joan blasting through a Haleiwa section on his way to a strong semi final finish. (photo: Jason Shibata)

WORKING MORE ON YOUR PHYSICAL AND SURF TRAINING THIS YEAR DEFINITELY SEEMED TO HELP YOU. DO YOU THINK IT’S IMPERATIVE FOR SURFERS TO TRAIN PHYSICALLY AS WELL?

I love sports, and I feel really bad if I’m not doing anything, thus training is not a chore, but a real pleasure! Moreover, Maud Le Car (girlfriend and Volcom surf team rider) and a group of young frenchy surfers such as Cloarec, Charly Quivront, and Bastien are lucky to have Charly Ducamp as a personal trainer, who is actually a great coach for me too. On the surf side, I’ve been working with Manu Portet for several years now. He was there to support me at all contests where I made my good results, so the training shows!

HOW WILL YOU FEEL WHEN YOU WILL OFFICIALLY BE ON THE ELITE CHAMPIONSHIP TOUR? SATISFIED OR PRESSURED?

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“I feel really excited, but I’m aware of the very high level, so I will have to train harder physically, and technically, so that I can hope to face and beat the world’s best surfers.”

 

WHAT ARE YOUR AMBITIONS ON THE TOUR?

To be qualified again for the CT in 2018 would be amazing.

WHAT’S YOUR OBJECTIVE GOING INTO THE 2017 SEASON?

To make quarters in the first contests. That would be an epic way to kick off the year.

WHAT ARE YOUR PLANS TO GET READY FOR THIS NEW LIFE AHEAD?

I’ll spend winter in France to train hard, spend time with my girlfriend, my family, and my mates. I have to get ready for the upcoming year, because it’s going to be a long, tough year, with many contests. I’m lucky to have Maud by my side in Australia, and I really hope my family will be able to come over one or two contests to fully enjoy it.

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photo: Andrew Christie

THE OLYMPIC GAMES. HOW DO YOU FEEL ABOUT IT? YOU’RE STILL YOUNG AND WILL OBVIOUSLY BE A CONTENDER TO BE A MEMBER OF THE FRENCH TEAM. DO YOU HAVE AN INTEREST IN THAT?

Yes, it’s my dream, and I’ll work as hard as I can to make it happen!

HOW ARE YOU GOING TO CELEBRATE THIS ACCOMPLISHMENT?

I think we’ll have to rent a room to gather all my friends and family to celebrate.

ANY LAST WORDS?

I want to thank all the people that supported me: my girlfriend, my family, my friends, and all my sponsors: Volcom, Vans, Mayhem, Creatures of Leisures, and Hercules, who never stopped believing in me for all these years. Let’s celebrate now!!!