The 2012 Billabong Pro Tahiti came to a conclusion in Teahupo’o on Monday, August 27th. After a week of small surf and multiple lay days, the final round of the event saw 5 to 6 foot swells, setting the stage for a pretty exciting conclusion! In the end, Mick Fanning conquered the competition over fellow Australian surfer Joel Parkinson. Fanning scored his two winning rides in the final 10 minutes, earning him a total of 18.87 points (Parkinson completed the surf heat with 18.37 points).
When asked how he felt about going head-to-head against Joel Parkinson, here’s what Fanning had to say: “The mad thing was Joel and I were the first two guys in the line up in the morning. Joel actually said to me when we were sitting out there, ‘How crazy would it be if we were sitting out here at the end of the day?’ Weird that it worked out that way. Going into the final I felt really good though, I’d just survived two big heats and knew there was big scores out there. I knew if I was patient I’d get a shot at a couple of winning waves.”
When asked about his win, Fanning said, “I’m stoked,” adding, “To come away with the win is great for my confidence and I’m in a good position heading into the next half of the year.” Indeed—yesterday’s win marks the 15th elite victory of Fanning’s career and the second win of this season. He’s already a two-time ASP World Champion, and now he’s the frontrunner for this year’s ASP World Championship Tour. However, as he points out, “There are a lot of guys right up there. It’s still anyone’s game at this point.”
But for now, Fanning is riding high on his victory and he’s full of gratitude for those that helped him get there. “I just wanna say a big thanks to my family and friends and I want to especially thank my Tahitian family, the Riou’s,” he said, “And cheers to everyone that backed me to get the job done.”
If you missed the competition, check out these highlights from the final day: