CJ Hobgood: life in aerial mode

CJ Hobgood was the man of the match in the second day of competition at the Billabong Rio Pro, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The North American surfer scored the highest heat-total of the entire event, 16.50 out of 20, in the clean two-to-four foot (1 metre) lefthanders of the Arpoador surf spot.

"That’s what makes those heats fun to surf and it’s exciting to watch," Hobgood said. "I have so much respect for Julian (Wilson) because these kids can come back so easily no matter what scores they need. I had a good start and had to be comfortable with my performance win or lose. It was exciting and I’m stoked to make it, I have so much fun surfing against these guys."

Joel Parkinson, another big hitter, was right when he adopted the strategy of waiting for the outside set waves and matched the day’s highest single-wave score of a 9 out of 10 for powerful backhand surfing to eventually eliminate fellow countryman Kai Otton.

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Pixrider: get addicted to it

Clement Levet, a 28 year-old Anglet surfer, has created Pixrider.com, a social network specially driven to surfers and their wave experiences. The French web designer thought of an internet platform that allows you to share, discover
and exchange sports experiences with riders from all around the planet.

In Pixrider.com, you can publish videos, surf sessions, trips you've made and all surfing-related footage. The site aims to attract surfers, industry professionals, beginners or experienced enthusiasts. But it’s also for photographers, journalists, brand managers, stores, shops and surf event organizers.

"The site was born of a discussion between friends, following an epic session at a Basque Country beach. After that exciting three hour session, the idea of creating a social network designed exclusively for surfers extreme sports enthusiasts came naturally", says Levet.

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Ricardo Santos: angry with his tail

The curse over the 2011 Billabong Rio Pro is over. After several consecutive lay-days, surfers have kicked off Round 1m, at the lefthand pointbreak of Arpoador, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Despite the bumpy wave conditions and inconstant weather conditions, the heat is on and there were a few surprises. Except one. Yes, that one called Kelly Slater. The Floridian got off to a strong start and scored the day’s highest single-wave score of a 9.00 (out of 10).

"That 9 felt good," Slater said. "I went down to grab my jersey and there was some confusion. By the time I got out, the heat had already started and Julian got that first one. It wasn’t a good start. I knew there were going to be some good ones and I just had to be patient. That one good wave actually let me bottom turn and hit the lip, most of the waves were soft and had a lot of horizontals."

Slater also admitted that several goofy-footers will be tough to beat at the lefthander of Arpoador and noted that the natural-footers will need to be especially selective in their wave choice at the Billabong Rio Pro.

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