Freddy Patacchia: great surfer, great man | Photo: Rowland/WSL

Freddy Patacchia has announced his retirement from the World Surf League (WSL) Championship Tour, after winning Round 1 of the 2015 Hurley Pro, at Lower Trestles.

The Hawaiian won his clash against Gabriel Medina and Bede Durbidge, but he decided to withdraw from the contest. With five minutes on the clock remaining, Patacchia caught a wave, greeted Medina and paddled towards the beach, in celebration mode.

"I knew the day would come when I would have to walk away from professional surfing. And I never thought it would end like this. This is just the perfect scenario for me," explained Freddy Patacchia.

"It is probably the last time that I'll compete on the big stage on the Championship Tour, but I look forward to still competing in some Qualify Series events. I just need to take a step back and cool down,"

"I knew this day was going to come when I would have to walk away from surfing. I really wanted to take it to those guys and show everybody that I've still got it. I wanted to walk away hot, and I wanted to walk away on my own terms."

"And this isn't it for me - yeah, this is probably the last time I'll wear the number 50 on my back, but I am looking forward to still competing in top QS events and doing that. I just needed to take a step back and slow down - it's a long time on the road and a long time being away, and I have other things I want to do in life.”

"It's tough to walk away from everyone that has become my family, but I've lived my dream. For me, this is it, but I want to thank everyone who's played a part in helping me do what I love. I don't want to say I'm giving up on my dream because I've lived my dream."

Freddy Patacchia was born on the 15th December 1981, on Oahu's, North Shore, in Hawaii. He entered the ASP World Tour elite in 2005 and immediately won the Rookie of Year award.

Freddy's highest Dream Tour rating was 12th in 2006 and 2008. Patacchia's favorite surf breaks are Pipeline, Haleiwa, and Rocky Point.