Kelly Slater has conquered the Billabong Pipe Masters 2013, in a 10-15 foot big wave surfing day, at Banzai Pipeline. The Floridian defeated local favorite John John Florence.
Despite having lost the 2013 ASP World Tour title to Mick Fanning, Slater put out a stellar performance in the final heats of the Pipe Masters In Memory of Andy Irons. Perfect 10 wave included.
Twenty years of age separate John John and Kelly. The final heat got underway in a relaxed vibe. The Hawaiian was looking for his maiden Pipe Masters title. Kelly had already six trophies in his belt.
After 20 minutes without high-scoring waves, Slater steals a near-perfect 10 wave to take the lead. Then another one. Final stolen away from the Hawaiian.
"It was a strange Final. John John and I both waited for a while and neither of us really got a score until late in the match. I knew it was going to be a sprint and it was probably a little advantageous not to have priority in the Final as I was able to go for a lot of waves instead of wait for those that took a while to eventuate", explains Slater.
"Last year, someone asked me what excited me in the end years of my career and I said I would like to surf a Final at Pipe against John John so that's pretty special today. To win is even better. I want to surf against the best surfers at the best waves - that's why I'm on tour"
"I was obviously emotional today, especially after Mick clinched the title in the Quarters. I don't know what happens for me in 2014 but I think that has pissed me off just enough to come back". Slater is back in 2014.
John John Florence has clinched the 2013 Vans Triple Crown of Surfing, the second of his career, at only 21.
In 2003, Jason Borte, who co-wrote the Floridian's autobiography "Pipe Dreams: A Surfer's Journey", asked Kelly Slater where did he see himself in a decade (2013)? The answer couldn't be more prophetic.
"Well, in ten years I'll be forty, and hopefully I'll be right here surfing in the Pipe Masters final against John John".
There's a Spanish proverb that says "yo no creo en brujas pero que las hay, las hay". (I don't believe in witches, but that they exist, they exist). It couldn't be more appropriate.
Billabong Pipe Masters 2013 | Final
Kelly Slater (USA), 16.37 vs. John John Florence (HAW), 15.90