On a sun-washed afternoon on O’ahu’s North Shore, a black truck slowly pulls itself down Kamehameha Highway. Seated inside the truck is the newly minted surfing world champ, North Shore local John John Florence. On both sides of the road, throngs of fans cheer and chant his mane. John John! John John! They scream. It’s a moment reminiscent of a Norman Rockwell painting; it’s heartwarming. This is their champ. John John Florence. And he is home.
In the surf world, John John Florence is viewed as a boy-king, a phenom practically born into surfing’s limelight. His accolades run deep: youngest surfer to ever compete in the Triple Crown; youngest surfer to ever compete at the Pipe Masters; youngest surfer to ever get the cover of Surfer Magazine. It was never a matter of if John would win a world title, but when…and then how many. But this year, amid a Portuguese beachbreak, the World Surf League (surfing’s governing body) found that the North Shore kid had clinched it at all. Hawaii erupted. The title had come home to the islands that birthed the sport.
"I never could have imagine this," said a stoked and surprised John. This is everyone that I've grown up with. I couldn't have dreamed of something like this."
Despite clinching the world title, John John still has plenty of competition left as the upcoming Vans Triple Crown of Surfing is right around the corner. That's right, you can still see the world's best surfer strut his stuff on the North Shore in one of surfing's most revered events. Competition gets underway for the Triple Crown with the first leg of the three-event series at Haleiwa on November 12. Then, we move into the prestigious Sunset leg of the Triple Crown on November 24. And finally, the 2016 season concludes with the world-famous Pipeline Masters on December 8th.
Click here to view our special World Surf League rate and watch the world's best surfers compete in the world's most harrowing waves.
Congrats again, John! We have a feeling this will be the first of many more.