Ezekiel Lau is a proud native Hawaiian who honed his wave-riding craft in Honolulu, the very cradle of the surfing lifestyle. Tall, dark, ripped and regal, he exudes the spirit of ancient surfing royalty despite being raised in a family of stick-and-ball studs. His father, Leonard Lau, played football at the University of Hawaii before becoming a prominent high school coach. When Zeke decided early on that surfing was his thing, Leonard instilled him with the discipline and structure he’d need to succeed. From the age of 10, Lau was an early standout along with his world-class group of peers like John John Florence, Keanu Asing and Carissa Moore. But his road to the Championship Tour was a long and bumpy one by comparison. In 2011, the same year Florence qualified, Lau finished 115 on the Qualifying Series. He won three Qualifying Series events while dabbling on the schedule. In 2013, his first full year out, he finished No. 36 after taking a huge win at the Vans World Cup at Sunset, but the very next year was a shocker, and he fell outside the Top 100. As he filled into his adult frame, and matched his equipment to his new power, Lau landed more punches. In 2015 he was on the verge of making the cut after a third at the Hawaiian Pro. Heading to Sunset Beach that year, where he was defending champ, he didn’t need much, but a heartbreaking first-round loss dropped him to No. 19 and cost him his shot. The following year at Sunset he sought redemption, and after a strong semifinal finish at Sunset he landed in the No. 11 spot…one spot below the cut. But fortune would favor Zeke at the final Championship Tour event that year at Pipeline. His Quiksilver teammate Kanoa Igarashi earned a double qualification there, which confirmed Zeke as a 2017 Championship Tour member. While his rookie year was bumpy, his semifinal appearance at Bells Beach was fair warning to the rest, and he racked up two more QS wins. Finishing third at the Oi Rio Pro, Zeke finished off 2018 at No. 20 on the Jeep Leaderboard, jumping up nine spots from 2017.