|ESPN.com: Surfing||[Print without images]|
Hawaii has been a little lackluster for the past week. The normal blue bombs haven't been exploding off the North Shore reefs like they normally do in December. This gave us an opportunity to talk with current ASP No. 2 surfer, Jordy Smith, of South Africa.
This year, Smith notched his first World Tour victory (the Billabong Pro South Africa) in front of his own countrymen, held the No. 1 slot for a time, and made the final of the Rip Curl Pro Portugal, putting himself within reach of a World Championship in only his third year on tour.
|At 22 years old, Jordy Smith seems to have figured out the ways of the Tour much quicker than most.|
Where does a 22-year-old get that kind of maturity? What's pushing him? And just how intense was the title race with Kelly Slater for Smith. We talked to him to find out. Lord knows, he's had time to chat ...
ESPN.com: Not the best week on the North Shore. What's going on out there?
Smith: Basically, I'm just hanging around right now, just waiting for the swell to pick up a little bit and get those bigger boards out.
ESPN.com: The Triple Crown was been on hold for five straight days. What did you do during the down time?
Smith: There hasn't been too much going on -- I've been doing a little training -- soccer, tennis. I like to keep active. I also like to snorkel the reef out at Pipe to see what's happening and see where all the shallow bits are. It just kind of helps you to know your spot better and understand your line-ups. I have shave-ice every day, so that's really good (laughs.) It's so Hawaiian. There hasn't been waves, so I've just been cruising with family and hanging out.
|Jordy Smith logs a little tube time before the North Shore went flat last week.|
Both you and Bobby Martinez have pointed out that the O'Neill team manager, Garth Tarlow, has been a big help this year.
|Smith's travel agent, manager, and roomate, Garth Tarlow.|
You're very young to be in the position that you're in, consistently making it to final rounds and staying in the top five on tour. Why do you think that you've been able to figure out the intricacies of ASP competition quickly, where it takes other guys years to figure that out?
You're surfing with a level of maturity that's unusual for someone with just two seasons on tour. Where is that coming from?
|Few surfers have such a smooth aerial aresenal.|
A couple years ago, when you were coming onto the tour with Dane Reynolds, there was all this hype around these two rookie standouts. It was recently leaked that Dane was considering not doing the tour after this year. Would that bum you out?
How intense was it when you were actually in a world title race?
|Jordy has a deadly right hook.|
What was your least favorite part of that at the time?