Powers to defend his title starting today

HALE‘IWA — The 26th annual Vans Triple Crown of Surfing is poised to kick-off first thing this morning at Hale‘iwa’s Ali‘i Beach Park, with an incoming west-northwest swell building for the start of the Reef Hawaiian Pro. Kaua‘i’s Roy Powers will defend his event title against last year’s Triple Crown winner Bede Durbidge.

The $170,000 Reef Hawaiian Pro is a men’s and women’s 6-star rated ASP World Qualifying Series event and will feature over 200 of the world’s top-ranked surfers.

Official Series surf forecaster Wetsand.com predict early forerunners of the swell to materialize today, building to a peak, tomorrow. Waves are anticipated to reach the high surf advisory level of 15 feet (wave face heights in excess of 20 feet). Winds may be the only obstacle for Thursday/Friday, with trade winds giving way to variables.

Hot on the heels of this initial swell, early data shows the potential for the first category extra large swell of the North Shore season: waves in the 18- to 20-foot range (wave face heights in excess of 30 feet). This swell, though still in the crystal ball stage, is slated for Sunday arrival, persisting into Monday. Again, winds could pose pote

ntial challenges.

The Reef Hawaiian Pro at Hale‘iwa has been a feature of the Vans Triple Crown of Surfing in recent years, boasting some of the largest waves contested during the Series.

Above 10 feet, it transforms into one of the most challenging waves on the North Shore with its neck-breaking rip-current, inside dredging “toilet bowl” section, and pitching take-off. It’s the kind of wave that suits power-house surfers like Hawai‘i trio Pancho Sullivan, Sunny Garcia, Powers and Durbidge.

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