The 17 and 18-year-old competitors are the considered veterans on the Junior Tour these days, already competing for a few years and expectations are high. An event such as the Ron Jon Quiksilver Junior Pro provides a true proving ground to the grit these juniors can show, but when it turns on as it has the past two days -- things can get fun.
Eithan Osborne struck again at Cocoa Beach, Florida after a great performance in the Qualifying Series (QS) event yesterday, but this time as a junior where his focus is geared. The Ventura, California, native blasted a critical air-reverse in the shorebreak that he was able to come out of before running onto the sand and earning a near-perfect 9.57 (out of a possible 10). Osborne added an 8.50 to that and threatened the overall event's top heat total, an 18.17 (out of a possible 20), with his own 18.10, to kick off his final Junior Tour year.
"That heat was insane with Sebastian [Williams] and Stevie [Pittman], and to be in a Round Three heat was crazy -- that's a Final at any of these events" Osborne said. "My focus is in the juniors this year, I want to make it to Worlds so bad and take that event out, but I'd also like to be in the QS 6,000s at the end of the year as well."
But, the 17-year-old's seemingly endless injury plague is under control at the moment and enters this season in full force.
"It's good since it's my last year in school and I'll be able to fully focus on my surfing afterward," Osborne added. "One of my main goals is to stay healthy this year. I'm always getting hurt and it's cost me events, so I'm really looking forward to being at one hundred percent."
Tomorrow's 7:30 a.m. EDT call will determine an 8:00 a.m. EDT start for either the men's QS Round Three or men's junior Quarterfinals.