John John Florence and Carissa Moore have taken out the first-ever Digital Triple Crown of Surfing.
For the first time in its history, the prestigious three-event series crowned its champions in a digital free surf competition.
Between December 21, 2020, and January 15, 2021, male and female surfers submitted their filmed waves ridden at the three iconic Hawaiian venues that comprise the Triple Crown of Surfing.
Competitors submitted video clips shot at Haleiwa Ali'i Beach Park, Sunset Beach, and Pipeline/Backdoor, all spots located on Oahu's Seven Mile Miracle.
Unlike traditional surf contest formats, this year, the event tested surfers' abilities, creativity, skill, and determination without the constraint of timed heats.
The first-ever Digital Triple Crown of Surfing was open to wave riders that were physically on the North Shore of Oahu and surfing during the Hawaiian Pro, World Cup of Surfing, and Pipeline Masters waiting period.
Each athlete submitted two of their best waves ridden at each surf spot, i.e., a total of six waves. All of them were date and time stamped to avoid fraudulent submissions.
A panel of three internationally accredited surf judges analyzed and reviewed each wave and assigned a total score per ride based on a maximum award of 10 points.
All judges' scores were added together to obtain a final ride score out of 30 points.
"The emphasis was on innovation and progressive surfing. We wanted to see surfers attacking different parts of the wave and with different types of surfboards," explained Pritamo Ahrendt, the Digital Triple Crown of Surfing head judge.
Fun and Exhausting
In the end, Digital Triple Crown of Surfing announced male and female champions for each location and two overall event series winners.
The overall champions were announced based on the combined six-ride total from all three surf breaks.
In the end, both titles stayed in Hawaii, with John John Florence and Carissa Moore crowned Digital Triple Crown of Surfing champions.
"It was definitely different from a normal event. My first approach was pretty mellow, and then I switched to competitive mode," said John John Florence.
"It's funny because you're not in a heat where there's only a couple of guys out. You're surfing with the whole crowd and trying to time the windows."
"Every time you're not surfing, you think someone is getting the best waves ever out there. And so you're always thinking about it 24/7."
"It was exhausting. I surfed so much - hours and hours. It was by far the most tiring event I've ever surfed. But it was really fun. There was a weird mixture of free surfing with competing."
The Digital Triple Crown of Surfing was also a historic moment for women's surfing, as they competed in all three spots with identical prize purse for both male and female competitors.
"The event was a great motivation for all of us females to get out at Pipe, a very intimidating lineup," expressed Carissa Moore.
"It pushed me to get out there on days I would normally paddle out at Haleiwa or stay in town. Seeing other girls making an effort also pushed me."
"Being a female Hawaiian surfer, it's always a dream of mine to compete in the Triple Crown of Surfing and hopefully have the opportunity to win it one day."
The Triple Crown of Surfing kicked off in 1983.
2020/2021 Digital Triple Crown of Surfing | Results
John John Florence (HAW) 164.5
Carissa Moore (HAW) 134.5
Haleiwa Ali'i Beach Park
John John Florence (HAW) 56.6
Carissa Moore (HAW) 54.1
John John Florence (HAW) 55.7
Bronte Macaulay (AUS) 49.1
John John Florence (HAW) 52.2
Moana Jones-Wong (HAW) 43.6
Fan Vote Award
Jack Robinson (AUS)
Tatiana Weston-Webb (BRA)