The Curious Case Of The Missing Pipe Permit.
By Dan Dobbin.
What a roller coaster ride of emotions this morning. Windy and rainy in my postcode so I slept in. Awakening to the notification that the WSL Pipeline contest was in full swing. Surf competition at Pipeline is preferable to any other surf contest watching.
Tuning in to find Two Johns is gone but Ke11y ploughs on, dispatching Miggy Poops on the first exchange of their Semi-final by suckering the Brazilian into a non-priority interference. Comp dramas in comp tactics.
With that heat most likely already decided, I figured now was a good time to pop on over to the morning Insta-scroll and catch up on the happenings in the boogieverse. The very first cab of the rank dropping into my feed is the mighty fine @hawaiibodyboarding run by the Meerkat Sammy Morrentino’s pops Sam Brown.
It features footage from the 2020 Mike Stewart Pipeline pro with a voice over from God himself in June of 2021 proclaiming to have a conditional permit for the presumably upcoming event.
Mike declares “The pipeline event will happen this year at pipeline, and if I have my way, it’s going to be a world championship event”.
“Fuck yes” I mutter to myself “Fuck yes!”
However, a quick click on the associated caption on the post brings grief and sadness as it is revealed that rather than a confirmation of the event happening, the clip is in fact a passive aggressive letting down of the bodyboarding community reading
“ Hawaiibodyboarding is mucho disappointed. No Pipeline Invitational in 2022. After this june 2021 announcement by Mike Stewart our hopes were sky high, but stuff happens. So sorry for bodyboarders and bodyboarding”.
Phones were buzzed, emails sent, DM’s flying.
Rumours of issues with Da Hui and Eddie Rothman, directions to a post and pending Youtube announcement from Portuguese website RReversemag declaring in Portuguese “ Pipeline mythical stage comes back thanks to the APB support”.
Bodies on the ground in the Pineapple Isles declaring that they have heard the contest is still on. Those close to the nuts and bolts still confident of something still happening. The announcement last week of a slated Women’s event at Pipe something to hold on to right?
Tempering the waters of hope is the confirmation of attendance of Pierre Louis Costes and strongly suggested attendance of Science team riders Mike, Tanner McD and Sammy Morrentino at the Bocas Invitational in Panama around the end of February, the time that the Pipeline contest is also slated for.
The highs and lows of despair and elation!
Back over at the WSL contest, a man all but 50 years old slays all before him at pumping Pipeline. Slater delivers a truly remarkable sporting performance to win the contest 30 years after his first victory in 1992.
This year’s Billabong Pro has been compelling viewing from start to finish, capped with Slater’s otherworldly abilities on full display in waves of consequence. Despite the 50 knot South East winds buffeting the ocean, I’m compelled to at least try to go surfing.
This is the gift that elite level competition gives a sport. The raising of the performance level, compelling entertainment and engagement, the inspiration of personal betterness and aspirational achievements.
Let’s hope for all of the boogieverse’s sake we at least get the opportunity to enjoy our own Pipeline event this year.
More as the story develops…….