This time last year, Jeremy Flores was an angry surfer, suspended after the third round of the J-Bay Open. But this year at the Billabong Pro Tahiti, the Frenchman stopped Gabriel Medina from being the only surfer in history to win back-to-back events at Teahupo’o.
Flores was determined to have the upper hand early on, his skull fracture sustained last month not hindering him one bit. In the brutal conditions, Flores earned a massive 9.87 after a steep drop into a barrel and impressive exit.
Earlier, another story had everyone's attention. Despite Flores defeating CJ Hobgood in the semis, Hobgood walked away, head held high, with the Andy Irons Award. Given to the most determined and committed surfer in the event, Hobgood will retire on a good note.
Adriano De Souza remains the leader in the Jeep ratings leaderboard, as no world title contender was able to capitalize in Tahiti. The “disappointed” Owen Wright would've replaced him if he'd advanced to the final.