Okay, second at Surfer Poll.
Well, I got fourth last year, so it was a step in the right direction. I hadn’t given it any thought until a few days before. I thought I might be lucky to scrape into the top five, so getting a second was a surprise. I was the first non-American, the first non-Kelly. He seems to win it most years. The guy is so huge over here in the States it’s no surprise he keeps winning it. But I was almost happier about Still Filthy winning Movie of the Year than me finishing second, because I worked really hard on that. I got the last section so I felt like a big part of the movie. That was a win in itself. That was pretty rewarding.
What were your thoughts paddling out against Machado?
I fully thought, the way Trestles breaks, that in a half hour heat it always throws up a bomb wave at some time, and whoever has priority when it comes through usually wins. Well a bomb did come through and Rob got it, but luckily for me he didn’t really connect with it so well. It wasn’t even in his top two. When he stood up on that wave I went, “Okay, I’m in trouble,” but luckily for me he only tagged a five or something out of if. I was behind, but all the way through I was thinking I’d get my shot at pegging him back. Then when that last second wave came through I thought really had a chance. And when I took off on that wave on the hooter I thought, okay, this is it. I was only chasing a 5.77 or something. I got up, heard the hooter with a second to spare, and fully thought I’d got it. But with the delay between the hooter and the lineup, a two second delay or something, I was a second too late I suppose. I fully thought I’d got it in the water, but got to the beach and found out I hadn’t. Lucky I didn’t claim it, hey?
What was your initial reaction?
I was walking up the beach when I heard the last wave didn’t count. I was blowing up, going, “That’s bullshit!” But I just didn’t allow for the two-second delay. They reckon they’re going to look at the situation. It’s happened before with Kelly at Bells before. And if you thought I blew up, you shoulda seen him!
It’s just about the only close call that’s gone against you all year. Were you waiting for it to happen?
I’ve had enough of those things in my career; it’s just like water off a duck’s back. It’s sport. I’ve had so many close calls go my way this year, had a few get out of jail cards this year, it was due. At the Quikky with Davo, stuff like that, you’ve got to give and take, and it was a close call and I’m totally fine with it. I’d just rather channel my energy somewhere better than being bitter about that.
You seemed okay later on…
When I got home I was really angry. When I left the beach it was probably the angriest I’ve ever been after losing a heat. It took me a couple of hours but I rang a mate at home who put a bit of light on the subject, and I hung up laughing. It put it all in a better light. I thought of all the good calls I’ve had.
Go to www.joelparko.com for the full interview…