John John Florence can feel it now. On Sunday afternoon in Peniche, Portugal, the reigning World Champ advanced to Round Four at the MEO Rip Curl Pro by taking a narrow win over wildcard Vasco Ribeiro in the blustery conditions. It was a close heat that had the crowd on its feet, with Ribeiro making John work hard for the win.
And with contenders falling all around him, Florence is now hoping to make history this week by becoming the first surfer since Andy Irons to win his first two World Titles in back-to-back fashion. With Jordy Smith falling in the very next heat, the door is now wide open for Florence. Florence can clinch the title with a win here. And the only guy who can stop him if he finishes in 2nd place is Gabriel Medina, who must win.
If John John can't make it to the Final the World Title race will be decided in Hawaii.