The Los Cabos Open of Surf Men's Pro Junior got underway after a few days of anticipation had the up-and-coming talents itching to put on a jersey -- it was well worth the wait. Many of the juniors put on a showcase of powerful surfing, keeping the goofyfooted dominance intact, and have their all-important Quarterfinal draws set.
No. 1 seed Che Allan demolished what Zippers had to offer him with a near-perfect heat total of 19.03 -- earning a 9.70 along the way. The Barbadian's backhand looks unstoppable when he needs it most -- coming off a tough result at the first event earlier this year.
"There's a lot of rights back home and Soup Bowl is a great one which is where I got my backhand from," Allan said. "Last year was a big year for me with my first win at home and then a fifth in Worlds, but, coming into this year as No. 1 seed, I've just had a few injuries and close calls so it feels great to get that heat under my belt."
Cole Houshmand best 2016 result on the Junior Tour came here in Los Cabos last year and he's well on his way to doing the same with an 8.33 to start his campaign. The San Clemente, California native found the gem he was waiting for and attacked each section with a variety of maneuvers to earn himself a spot back into the Quarterfinals.
"This is one of my favorite events and it was my best result last year which helps me bring in a lot of confidence," Houshmand said. "My homebreak, Lowers, definitely relates to this wave on certain tides and conditions, and I surfed it every day I could before coming here. I normally only go left, but I knew I was coming to Cabo so I just worked on my backhand as best I could."
Tyler Gunter joins the other two in needing a result following the first event of 2017 not providing him a keeper. But, Gunter has kept busy during the Pro Junior's break with inspiring work away from competition -- sort of.
"The waves are still super fun, the swells sticking around even though it was one of the slower heats," Gunter said. "I wanted to sit the deepest and get the first wave, but then had to wait fifteen minutes for another -- luckily it was a really good one."
"I've been working with the Young and the Brave Foundation for the last five years and every year we put together a charity surf event at 54th Street to help out kids with cancer and their families. The contest we held a month ago was just a barrel fest down there all day long and it's always a great event."
A 7:00 a.m. MDT call will determine a possible 7:30 a.m. start for either the Pro Junior Quartefinals or women's QS6,000 Round Six.