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A New King Is Crowned At Surfer Poll

Posted on Mon, 2014/12/08 - 5:04pm by Anonymous

On a warm Saturday evening, the upper echelon of the surf industry found themselves huddled together on the sweeping grounds of Turtle Bay resort for the 45th Surfer Poll awards, held right here on Oahu's North Shore. With mai-tais, local beers, and plenty of shakas on tap, the surf industry big-wigs—which included athletes, CEOs, marketing heads, and their better halves just to name a few—talk storied under a pastel sunset before the awards show officially started. Think of the vibe as an Oscars pre-party meets North Shore barbecue and you've got the gist. If you're unfamiliar with the awards show, every year, Surfer Magazine polls their readers for a top 10 and 10 5 list of the most adored surfers in the world. For the better part of the past two decades, Kelly Slater's found himself in the number-one position. But this year, with the likes of an entirely new crop of young and fiercely beloved surfers forging their presence, Slater's victory was hardly assured. As the night wore on, and awards for Best Wipeout, Best Barrel, and Best Film were delved out, the tension in the room began reaching a crescendo. Could Kelly retain his title once again or was a young gun going to take the crown? As the night came to a close, the verdict dropped: Slater finished second, and the North Shore's own John John Florence finished first. On the women's side, the current world champ, Steph Gilmore, stepped into first as well. “It feels great to win. I’m super stoked to finally get over Kelly. He’s obviously the best surfer in the world and I’ve always looked up to him,” said Florence. “I can’t say enough good things about Kelly. In all honesty, I was really shocked to hear that I’d won. He keeps beating me by a hair, so I feel like hopefully I’m bucking the trend with this win.” “Every single year we come to the Surfer Poll and we watch these videos of the maneuvers that guys like John John Florence, Kelly Slater, and Albee Layer have done,” Gilmore said, “and we’re inspired and we think: ‘I wonder if it’s even possible to go further? So for me, I still feel like I’ve got so much stuff to work on.”

Full Results: SURFER Poll

Men’s Top 10
1. John John Florence
2. Kelly Slater
3. Gabriel Medina
4. Mick Fanning
5. Jordy Smith
6. Dane Reynolds
7. Joel Parkinson
8. Julian Wilson
9. Kolohe Andino
10. Taj Burrow

SURFER Poll Women’s Top 5
1. Stephanie Gilmore
2. Sally Fitzgibbons
3. Carissa Moore
4. Coco Ho
5. Alana Blanchard

A.I. Breakthrough Performer
Noa Deane

Best Barrel
Koa Smith, Skeleton Bay

Worst Wipeout
Myron Porter, The Right

Heavy Water
Grant “Twiggy” Baker

Best Documentary
Thundercloud, directed by Talon Clemow

Best Short
Cheese II, directed by Noa Deane and Shane Fletcher

Best Performance
Albee Layer in Attractive Distractions Movie of the Year Strange Rumblings in Shangri La, directed by Joe G