Andy Irons (left), CJ Hobgood

For the first time in three years, Andy Irons has reached the top of an ASP World Tour podium. In an event that saw 12 surfers lose their World Tour status, CJ Hobgood's third second-place finish at Teahupoo, and Kelly Slater's climb to within one heat win of the top of the World Tour standings, it was a fitting end to one of the year's most anticipated contests. (Joli)