Bodyboarders challenge the storm at Teahupoo

April 29, 2016 | Bodyboarding
Jeff Hubbard: whitewater ramps | Photo: Josh Tabone/APB

The 2016 SparkGreen Tahiti Challenge has reached the quarterfinals at Teahupoo.

Despite all efforts from the APB staff, the Tour is still delivering a semi-professional spectacle. Fans are not able to watch a fully functional webcast (with decent post-heat interviews, multiple camera angles, replays and continuous live scoring), and surf media doesn't get a regular photo feed and basic event information (results and quotes from heat winners).

In the past, the IBA World Tour was severely criticized for the monetization of the sport, but the final product was far superior. At a professional level, you can't just be passionate about the sport. You have to make it happen, while ticking, at least, the basic boxes.

Teahupoo was a formidable opportunity, and the APB Tour did a fantastic job putting Tahiti on the schedule. But it isn't good to watch. There are way too many flaws, and it is not enough to publish short messages (full of typos) on social media.

It is also not adequate to have a legend like Mike Stewart working directly with the APB staff, doing smartphone interviews, and competing at the same time. It is understandable, but it is not the ideal approach. Bodyboarders should compete. And that's it.

The penultimate day of competition at Teahupoo had great waves, but the online stream was suddenly interrupted due to a "storm and flood in Papeete that destroyed crucial internet infrastructure and made a live webcast impossible."

Is success a matter of luck? If so, the World Surf League has been extremely lucky because surfing events at Teahupoo have been running smoothly for nearly a decade. Anyway, the finals day has been postponed.

In the quarterfinals, Cedric Estall beat Dave Hubbard, and Mike Stewart eliminated Tanner McDaniel. There are still two heats to be surfed (Jared Houston vs. Alan Munoz, and Angelo Faraire vs. Jeff Hubbard), but the champion will be crowned in the last of competition.

2016 SparkGreen Tahiti Challenge | Quarterfinals

Cedric Estall (TAH) 11.23 def. Dave Hubbard (HAW), 10.84
Mike Stewart (HAW) def. Tanner McDaniel (HAW)
Jared Houston (RSA) vs. Alan Munoz (CHI)
Angelo Faraire (TAH) vs. Jeff Hubbard (HAW)

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