Can the Brazilians be stopped at Lowers?
The 2011 Nike
Lowers Pro will forever be remembered as the moment when Brazilians abruptly changed the landscape of pro surfing. While Brazil has been firing warning shots at the U.S. and Australia
for years, never before had their invading force so firmly dominated an event at Lower Trestles. Last year they claimed 6 of the top 8 spots, as well as 3 of the top 4; so it was only fitting that Miguel Pupo
, one of their own, walked off with the precious golden spike.
One year later, the impact of 2011 is just starting to be realized. Pupo's victory propelled him into the Top 32 just in time for the mid-season cutoff, launching him onto the ASP's World Championship Tour. In that lofty bracket he's joined a powerful group of Brazilian surfers that include Adriano De Souza
, Alejo Muniz
, Jadson Andre
, Heitor Alves
, Raoni Monteiro
and Gabriel Medina
The Brazilians already outnumber the Americans at the elite level.
And at Lowers last year they delivered a scary message: they're just getting started. Not only is the Brazilian talent pool overflowing (There are two dozen Brazilians the ASP's top 100). But their up-and-coming stars are as acrobatic, charismatic, and talented as they come. Bottom line, if you're not already respecting them, you will be.
Above Right: Miguel Pupo
used his victory at the 2011 Nike
Lowers Pro to propel him into the world's elite Top 32. Photo: Hillman
Lower Trestles is the world's brightest stage for high-performance surfing, a launch pad for future American and international stars
Lowers Pro: The Legacy of Lowers from Nike
Surfing on Vimeo.
In the early 1970's only one Trestles local mattered, one who loomed larger than anyone before or since-- President Richard Nixon. With policy summits on China
, and Vietnam
taking place at his Western White House at Cotton's Point, the Marines had the famed San Clemente surf breaks on lockdown, sealing any remaining paths of access.
Fortunately, some of Nixon's closest aides belonged to the San..
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