It seems like every session now we're left wondering how the bar could possibly get pushed any higher, and then something happens and it just keeps going. In this case the swell happened very early in the season, setting a benchmark for everything to come, so that's makes things really interesting this year. I think everybody at Jaws was left wondering what's next. We'll have to see what we get.
On the evolution of the equipment:
The changes in board design happens incrementally. You can't make big drastic changes because if you do and it doesn't work you suffer the consequences. So we've been slowing working with rocker and outlines, but it's a long process. I think the biggest thing lately is that I've started adapting from a three-fin setup to a quad. The thruster's still very good in some conditions, but the quad's the thing that I've really changed up.
On the safety factor:
The inflatable wetsuit that Shane Dorian and Billabong have developed has really made a big difference. Everybody's wearing them now. And we also make sure we are paying water patrol guys, specific people, to watch over us. We don't do it unless we make sure we have an extra set of eyes on us. It's a constant process of refinement, but safety's always our number one concern. Also, I've been developing some new technology with a few people that could really take things to the next level. We should be getting our first prototypes soon so we can begin testing and getting it out there this winter. I don't really want to talk too much about it right now, but it's something I'm really excited about.
On the next generation of big-wave surfers:
I couldn't be more excited. I think there was a bit of a generation gap there. I came up looking up to guys like Peter Mel and some of those Maverick's pioneers. They're all in their 40s now. Then there's guys like Mark Healey, Ian Walsh, my brother and me and a bunch of others, we're all in our 30s. I've always wondered where the generation below ours was. It seems there's kind of a hole there. But the guys on Maui in their late teens and early 20s, guys like Albee Layer, Walsh's brothers, Billy Kemper, they're so good out there. Albee backdoors every other wave, it's incredible. And they're at the top of their game in anything from two feet to 20, which says a lot about their talents.
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