The holding window for the 2019 Vans Triple Crown of Surfing, one of the industry's longest-running heritage surf series, opened on November 13 with a traditional Hawaiian protocol ceremony at Haleiwa Ali'i Beach Park, the site of the Hawaiian Pro and first event of the Vans Triple Crown of Surfing.
Haleiwa Ali'i Beach Park is revered as the gateway to the North Shore and also the starting point for many professional surfers' careers. Local athletes such as Ezekiel Lau, Carissa Moore, Makuakai Rothman and John John Florence began competing at this wave during the annual keiki surf contest, the North Shore Menehune Surfing Championships, and consider it a gathering point for family, friends and year-round celebrations.
The opening protocol featured traditional oli (chants) from Hawaiian community members Manu Boyd and Na 'Ohana Kai, along with offerings of maile lei and mana'o (thoughts, ideas) to the ocean in a show of gratitude. WSL GM North America and Hawaii/Tahiti Nui Jodi Wilmott also provided a warm welcome, along with thanks to the cultural practioners who made the opening protocol a beautiful representation of Hawaiian culture. Athletes gathered at Haleiwa Ali'i Beach Park along with Vans Triple Crown staff, WSL, media and community members to take part in the ceremony, which connected the traveling contingent to the local land and residents.
A Men's QS 10,000 event, the Hawaiian Pro was called OFF on November 13 due to small 1-2ft. surf at Haleiwa. With a solid new NW swell forecast to build Thursday, contest organizers will reconvene in the morning to make another call in anticipation of Day 1 of competition.
"Day 1 of the waiting period of the Hawaiian Pro and we have small conditions, only 1ft. surf on hand," said Marty Thomas, WSL Hawaii/Tahiti Nui Competition Director. "We are looking at that new swell Surfline forecasted to kick into tomorrow, build in the afternoon into Friday, Saturday and Sunday."