Saturday, November 1, 2014
Updated: Monday, November 3, 2014
Kelly Slater (USA) earned the second nine-point ride of the 2014 season when he earned a 9.07 in Round 3 of the Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast.
High scores were hard to come by in Round 5 of the Billabong Rio Pro, but Slater managed a Perfect 10.
Slater set the bar for a slew of nine-point rides, notching a 9.40 in Round 1, Heat 1 of the Billabong Pro Tahiti.
When Slater paddled out for Round 3, he went on a tear, scoring five consecutive nine-point rides in his heat. His first ride came in at a 9.00.
Slater's heat tally was so high that neither of his first two nines would even make it into his two-wave total of high scores. His second came in at a 9.33.
Slater's fourth wave -- 9.20 -- was one of the more impressive throwaways.
He dropped into the next Teahupo'o bomb to score his third Round 3 nine -- a 9.57.
Slater reached near-perfection to cap of his Round 3 heat, pulling off a 9.87 on his fifth wave.
In Round 4, Slater picked up right where he left off. He scored a 9.67 on his opening wave.
Slater took advantage of each scoring opportunity -- and there were plenty. He scored a 9.77 on his fourth Round 4 ride.
Wrapping up his Round 4 performance, Slater pulled into a classic Tahitian barrel to earn a 9.17.
For the third consecutive round, Slater opened with a nine-pointer. His first wave in the Quarterfinals came in at a 9.00.
Slater matched the building conditions with building heat totals. He scored a 9.80 for his second Quarterfinals nine-pointer.
Slater would leave Tahiti with two Perfect 10s. The first was in Quarterfinal 4...
...the second was in Semifinal 2.
While he only had three waves in his Semifinals heat, he made the most of them. On his last wave of the faceoff against John John Florence (HAW), he air-dropped into a tube during and earned a 9.77.
In the Final, Slater faced Gabriel Medina (BRA) in what would become a very close heat. He scored a 9.63 on his second wave, which would end up being the highest single-wave score of the matchup.
Slater's second nine in the Final was a 9.30, just under what he needed to take the Tahiti event title.
The following month, at the Hurley Pro at Trestles, Slater had Joel Parkinson (AUS) on his heels when he scored a 9.37 early in the Quarterfinals.
Slater scored a 9.00 in Round 1 of the Quiksilver Pro France.
He found another nine-pointer in France during Round 5. He scored a 9.07 on his first wave, which had Taj Burrow (AUS) playing catchup.
Slater took the lead from Matt Wilkinson (AUS) in Round 1 of the Moche Rip Curl Pro when he scored a 9.67 late in the heat. He would go on to lose his Round 3 heat against Spaniard Aritz Aranburu. Slater competes next at the final WCT event of the season, the Billabong Pipe Masters December 8-20.