The Billabong Team Picks The 3 Best to Ever Surf Teahupo'o
Teahupo'o is a burly beast that comes out of deep ocean straight into shallow reefs to create one of the heaviest slabs in the world. It takes a rare combination of skill, knowledge and bravery to catch a wave at Chopes and all of those things tenfold to be a champion there. We asked our team - experts with years of experience surfing Teahupo'o - who they thought was the best to ever surf there. Check out their answers below -
1. Kelly Slater
2. Andy Irons
3. Damien Hobgood
1. Kelly Slater - "Witnessing him over the last two decades and what he's done has been freakish."
2. Bruce and Andy Irons - "They defined backside tube riding out there and getting in the wave, especially. I can't pick one over the other and they wouldn't have been as good without each other.
3. Corey Lopez - "When it's big out there, people are paddling away from the sets and Corey is trying to find a way to catch them."
1. Kelly Slater
2. John John Florence
3. Gabriel Medina
1. The Hobgoods - "Always seemed to get the best and biggest ones when they went out there and they're both ridiculous in frontside tubes."
2. Kelly Slater - "His dominance in competition and ability to ride the wave was flawless. He must have the most 10's out there all-time."
3. Manoa Drollet - "He really set the pace out there for a while and he had local knowledge like no one else. He surfed Teahupo'o way too often to not be the best and I think he won the trials almost every single year."
4. Andy Irons - "Adding a fourth because I can't leave him off the list. That one wave obviously gets him on the list but among everything else, he proved that he was so ballsy and stylish in the heaviest wave in the world."
1. Andy Irons - "His style and the way he approached the wave was so much more raw than anyone else."
2. Ricardo Dos Santos - "He wasn't afraid to go on any wave that came his way. He was a goofy foot AI out there."
3. Manoa Drollet - "Every time you watch a clip from a Teahupo'o swell, you would see him on the biggest, heaviest waves and he seemed so relaxed."
1. Andy Irons - "He's timeless and the absolute king of the place."
2. Wade Goodall - "I remember Wade cut his head open out there and then still paddled out for his heat."
3. Damien Hobgood - "He's one of, if not the, best surfers out there and probably the best goofy out there."
1. Manoa Drollet - "He got some of the biggest waves ever ridden out there and he does it with style."
2. Andy Irons - "Andy seemed to have a strong connection with Teahupo'o. No doubt one of the best ever out there."
3. Kelly Slater - "No one can argue that he's been one of the best out there."
1. Andy Irons - "He's the man and his approach and technique suits the wave better than anyone."
2. Jeremy Flores - "He's a nutcase and I like watching him surf the place."
3. Owen Wright - "Owen will tackle a west bowl out there like nobody else can."
1. Laurie Towner - "He has such good style and the way he goes for it is insane."
2. The Florence Brothers - "John and Nate will just go on anything. They are so crazy out there."
3. Andy Irons - "His style and how late and underneath he takes off and just drags through them was mental."