- WSL / Kelly Cestari

When Samuel and Miguel Pupo compete in the Billabong Pro Pipeline, they will be continuing a rich history of brothers competing on the CT. The Brazilian pair will be the seventh set of male siblings to tackle the elite tour, pitting their spliced DNA against each other, and the world's best.

If we go chronologically the first set were the Ho Brothers; Mike and Derek. Mike (the father of another famous sibling act Mason and Coco) won in the Pipe Masters in 1982 with a broken wrist and was a competitive force for more than 25 years. He's still turning heads on the North Shore now aged 62. The younger Derek, who passed away in 2020, was Hawaii's first World Champion in 1993 and twice a Pipe Master.

Next came the Padaratz bros, Flavio and Neco. Flavio was the first Brazilian to make the World Tour, not so much paving, but macheting a path that has now led to Brazil's domination of the sport. In his career, he had three Top 10 finishes and won two Qualifying Series titles before retiring in 2003. His younger brother, Neco joined him on the CT in 1997 and retired in 2011, with a defeat over Andy Irons in the Final of the Quiksilver Pro in France in 2002 a career highlight.

Andy vs. Bruce in France
2004 Quiksilver Pro France saw the Irons brothers face off in the Final, a landmark in the event's history.

The 1990s and 2000s can be considered the most fertile time for brothers. Competing against the Padaratz in that time were the Floridians Cory and Shea Lopez, the Hobgood twins, Damien and CJ, and, of course, Andy and Bruce Irons.

Shea and Cory grew up surfing knee-high waves in the Gulf Coast of Florida. That didn't stop Shea, the eldest, qualifying for the CT in 1995 and making the Top 16 in his rookie year, where he remained a fixture for six of the next seven seasons. Cory was even more successful, joining his brother in 1997 and spending a decade on the CT. He finished a career-best World No. 3 in 2001 and was known for his fearless tube riding at Teahupoo and Pipeline, as well as his innovative aerial attack.

Just a few years behind them were CJ and Damien Hobgood. "There have been many impressive brother duos in surfing's history," said surf journalist Jason Borte. "Never, though, has a set of twins ascended so far in the competitive ranks as Florida's CJ and Damien Hobgood."

Hobgood's Perfect Tahiti Tube
The former World Champ shocked fans and himself by making it out of this throaty barrel.

CJ was rookie of the year in 1999 and became World Champion in 2001. He chalked up six CT event victories before retiring in 2015. Damien claimed four, with most of the duo's victories coming in serious barreling waves at Tahiti, Fiji and Mundaka.

However, it is Andy and Bruce Irons who probably set the gold standard for sibling success -- and rivalry. Their combined talent, love and intense brotherly feuds produced some of the best performances ever seen on the North Shore throughout the 2000s. Their sparring was the platform that launched Andy towards three World Titles and 20 CT victories. Bruce had five seasons on the CT, claiming one win in Bali, as well as iconic victories at the Pipe Masters and Eddie Aikau Memorial Big Wave Invitational.

Corey Lopez (USA) high scored with a 16.6 heat total to win his round of 96 heat today. Cory Lopez launching in Saquarema back in 2011. - WSL / Daniel Smorigo

More recently, the Wright Brothers, Owen and Mikey, have taken up the brothers' mantle. The eldest Owen has been a mainstay on the CT since 2010, claiming four CT wins, the most memorable being at the Quik Pro Gold Coast in 2017, his first event back after 18 months out with a severe brain injury.

The younger, mulleted Mikey has had three injury-ravaged seasons on the CT, but remains one of the most recognizable, and explosive, surfers on the planet. Of course, we also have to mention their other sibling, Tyler, who has eclipsed both her brothers' successes with three World Titles.

No pressure then for Miguel and Samuel Pupo. Miguel, nine years older than the 2022 CT rookie Sammy, has had seven CT seasons under his belt since 2011. One of the big drivers to getting back on the CT after falling off in 2018 was so that he could surf with his younger bro. When Miguel requalified for the CT in 2021, and Samuel finished in the top 10 on the Challenger Series, both their dreams came true: surfing had another pair of brothers on the CT.

The waiting period for the Billabong Pro Pipeline gets underway on January 29. Keep it locked right here at WorldSurfLeague.com for the latest news and info as we countdown the start of the 2022 Championship Tour.

World Surf League
Download it for free on the App store. Download it for free on Google Play.