Photos and story by Mez.
The hot action at 2018 Florida Pro at Sebastian Inlet actually started the day before today’s event kick-off which featured windchill’s in the mid-20’s as the sun rose over the fabled Sebastian Inlet jetty framed in eery sea smoke.
This day however, even with a previous cold front holding the thermostat down in the mid-50’s – chilly by Central Florida standards – it was still in the very do-able range and, with the water in the mid-60’s, seemed downright tropical in comparison to todays Arctic welcome to all the competitors.
Hawaiian Zoey Mc Dougall does her job while the Florida Pro crew does theirs building out a towering, amazing looking scaffold structure the likes Sebastian Inlet has never seen.
With a pile of cash and points and the line for the 6,000 rated women’s event the ladies showed up in force and mixed it up with the 1 star rated men’s tilt which, honestly, has taken a role reversal back seat to the female side and has generated a ton of excitement and they hit the practice session with a ton of energy that elevated everybody’s surfing.
Stay tuned for more www.easternsurf.com coverage in the coming days and updates and photos on our Instagram at ‘easternsurfmag’ !
Sebastian Inlet spawn and newly minted World Tour rookie, Caroline Marks will no doubt get the hometown treatment and is the odds on favorite to take out the event.
She needs no introduction nor fanfare as Coco Ho comes from Hawaiian surfing royalty and will be a major draw as well as a crowd favorite.
San Clemente California’s Kevin Schulz with top Canadian pro Logan Landry.
Canada’s Logan Landry.
California’s Kevin Schulz.
Good ol’ north swell Sebastian Inlet and it’s against-the-grain-barrel-to-perfect-air-ramp-combo-sections on full display here. A pitted Chauncey Robinson certainly knows how to use both to full advantage and is one of the best youths ripping here now.
Hawaii’s Alessa Quizon.
Contest director Matt Kechele going over some details with co-announcer James McMullen.
Tahiti’s Vahine Fierro.
California’s Kirra Pinkerton.
South Carolina’s Cam Richards getting his licks in yesterday before getting down to bid’ness tomorrow.
Second-generation Inlet local Blake Speir continues to impress and is coming on strong in freesurfing abilities.
( L-R ) Florida Pro co-director “Gordo” Lawson, photog Nathaniel Harrington, event staffer Mark Haryslack and Caroline Marks having a pre-event convo while the weather is still relatively warm.
Australia’s Freya Plumm cherry picks a gem at OK Signs.
Tia Blanco, not a Beach Boys version of the Californian Surfer Girl with this lip-piercing backside vert.
Logan Hayes, local shredder from that “other” inlet, New Smyrna Beach.
Mark Haryslack and friend filling out the draw on the big board.
Australia’s Holly Wawn.
Brazil’s Gabriel Farias.
One of Floridas most promising women surfers Miss Rachel Presti.
One of my Brothers From Another Mother and photo subject / first string adventure partner for close to 40 years Matt Kechele. Safe bet to say that I’ve shot nobody more than Kech.