Vans Pier Classic Day 1: Spring Break The Lip!

Ben Bourgeois. Photo: Steindler

2010 Vans Pier Classic day one standout Ben Bourgeois. Photo: Steindler

Benny B Leads The Pack At The Vans Pier Classic

Day 1 of the 2010 Vans Pier Classic wasn’t quite triple-overhead 2009 US Open status, but damn the waves were fun at Huntington Beach Pier today! A fading south swell teaming up with a persistent little northwest swell created three peaks within the contest area; a right off the pier, a left going into the pier, and a right on the southern end of the zone. With only four dudes in the water and glassy, overhead sets pouring through, it felt more like September than March.

With some of the USA’s finest along with a slew of-up-and coming competitors battling it out in the rippable southside HB pier peaks, the early round heats provided a great kickoff to the event. Check the exclusive photos here, full results are at the bottom of the page.

Notes from the beach…

Kolohe Andino, who celebrated his 16th birthday a few days ago, was the most explosive surfer out there today. Where others would do a floater or check turn, Andino was blasting airs with abandon. While Ben Bourgeois got the highest heat score, Kolohe was the funnest guy, err, kid, to watch.

Kolohe "Brother" Andino. Photo Steindler

Kolohe "Brother" Andino. Photo Steindler

You’re supposed to be unbiased when reporting on contest surfing, but it’s tough for me not to pull for the dynamic duo of Ivan and Nathan Florence—I lived with them for a few years back when they were little rugrats. Now they’re just bigger (soon to be bigger than me) rugrats. And while neither of them made it through their heats today, put ‘em out at 4-6 foot Pipeline against some of the guys and it’d be a different story. Where’s John John? In Tasmania for the O’Neill Coldwater Classic.

It wasn’t quite US Open status, but damn the waves were fun at Huntington Beach Pier today! A fading south swell teaming up with a persistent little northwest swell created three peaks within the contest area; a right off the pier, a left going into the pier, and a right on the southern end of the zone. With only four dudes in the water and glassy, overhead sets pouring through, it felt more like September than March.

Bron Heussenstamm. Photo: Steindler

Bron Heussenstamm. Photo: Steindler

Bron Heussenstamm’s return to professional surfing was short lived With a pack of eight dudes—one wearing a “Heussenstamm” jersey—rooting him on from the beach, former TransWorld SURF cover boy made a valiant, but ultimately fruitless, return to pro surfing.

We would be remiss to say he didn’t surf well, dude got third against some of California’s most promising young surfers, Kolohe Andino, Gabe Garcia, and Dane Zaun. Marketing ploy or not, it was a good showing.

The Bron Heussenstamm fan club. Photo: Steindler

The Bron Heussenstamm fan club. Photo: Steindler

Thanks to the combination of southwest and northwest swell, the strange lack of the normal HB devil wind that usually kills the conditions, and a few spring breakers laying out in the warm sunny skies, day 1 of the 2010 Vans Pier Classic can be deemed a success. Check the photos from day one and log on tomorrow to transworldsurf.com to watch the 2010 Vans Pier Classic and Ezekiel Pro Junior live from computer.—Justin Coté

Keanu Asing. Photo: Steindler

Keanu Asing. Photo: Steindler

Michael Hoisington. Photo: Steindler

Michael Hoisington. Photo: Steindler

Unfortunately for Kauai's Nathan Carvalho, he broke his board on this southside HB pier wave and didn't make it through his early morning heat. Photo: Steindler

Unfortunately for Kauai's Nathan Carvalho, he broke his board on this southside HB pier wave and didn't make it through his early morning heat. Photo: Steindler

Dillon Perillo. Photo: Steindler

Dillon Perillo. Photo: Steindler

Spring Break.... yeeew! Photo: Rad Brad

Spring Break.... yeeew! Photo: Rad Brad

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