Florence displayed mastery at Pipe but is also good enough at Ali'i and Sunset to claim his 2nd Triple Crown. He just turned 21 in October. I'm going to give it a shot and say (baring injury) JJF will nail 3 more Triple Crowns and 5 Pipe Masters not to leave out 3 World Titles if he stays on tour for more than 10 or more years. Gary Kewley.
Generating momentum over the course of three events, Florence turned the race on its head at Pipeline, besting the world’s top surfers to clench his second esteemed title on the North Shore of Oahu.
“I’m so happy to have won the Triple Crown,” says John John Florence. “The first year, I wasn’t really thinking about it, I was just having fun...."
"..This year I came into the Triple Crown wanting to win it, but I honestly didn’t think I had a chance until we got to the final day at Pipe. This result definitely has me motivated for next year.”
The Story: Combining technical tube riding and his fearless approach to surfing Pipe, Florence displayed his mastery of Pipeline’s many faces, ousting the best surfers on tour throughout the event. Easily dispatching 2013 ASP World Champion Mick Fanning in the semi-finals with a heat total of 18.30, John John secured his second Triple Crown victory in front of thousands of fans while advancing to the final.
Pitted against childhood hero Kelly Slater in the final round, the ocean slowly stopped churning out perfection leaving John John requiring just under an 8-point ride in the closing minutes of competition. With a last ditch effort, Florence scratched into a Backdoor peak momentarily disappearing from view, emerging arms raised to an erupting beach.
While it added to the suspense of an otherwise anti-climactic final, Florence’s score came up less than 4/10 of a point short, ending his streak with a highly respectable second place finish to the 11-time world champ and eventual winner.
“When John John won his first Triple Crown, we knew it was just the beginning of many titles to come,” says Chris Abad, SPY surf marketing manager. “John has the ability to perform well beyond his years in all conditions, making him one of the most influential surfers in the world."
"Another title in addition to a top 10 finish on tour and a second place finish at Pipe marks another great year for John, and we’re looking forward to supporting him as he continues to dominate in all realms of surfing.”
Recovering from a bumpy start at Haleiwa with an equal 5th at the Vans World Cup of Surfing, Florence flawlessly sealed the deal with a top-level performance at the Billabong Pipeline Masters, posting near perfect scores and happily thriving in double-overhead second reef barrels.
John John joins an elite list of Triple Crown winners, including Derek Ho, Michael Ho, Tom Carroll, Gary Elkerton, Sunny Garcia, Andy Irons and Kelly Slater amongst others.