As of early Tuesday morning John John Florence, 2x World Champion, has officially withdrawn from the Uluwatu CT event, expected to kick off on June 8. Florence injured his knee while freesurfing last week, after being eliminated from the Corona Bali Protected in Round 3.
"This year has been so much fun regardless of my results," said Florence. "Through some of the tough losses I've learned more than I have in the past couple years. That's why I love competing - the chance to learn is always there, win or lose. I love the drive to win you get from a loss. I feel like I'm more driven to win than ever from this year."
Despite his recent results, Florence has always been driven to be unstoppable. His recent injury has not deterred that. The Hawaiian is more motivated than ever - if anything more motivated - after struggling through the first few events of the season.
"Unfortunately I hurt my knee during a freesurf here in Bali, and I have to pull out of the next event to get back and heal up as quickly as possible," Florence continued. "I was trying bottom turns in the yard last night to see if there is any way for me to possibly surf this event, but nothing about it felt right. Haha! I think it's best I heal 100% before I get back in the water. When I was a little kid I watched my favorite surfers winning events and trying big airs and big maneuvers and dreamed of doing those things. I will never lose that. I'm excited for everything to come. I hope to come out of this injury smarter and more excited than I have ever been."
Currently ranked No. 21 on the Jeep Leaderboard, there's little doubt that Florence had higher hopes for the start of this season. While it's still early in the game, the Title race is starting to take shape, with Italo Ferreira leading the charge. And although it's well known that Florence has been unable to put up a solid result this year, many believed it was only a matter of time before he would bounce back. With his latest injury, bouncing back is going to be harder than anticipated. But if there's anyone that can rise to a challenge...it's the 2x World Champ.
Watch the Uluwatu CT live on Facebook and WSL.com June 8-10.