I surfed my first ever “Cave Wave”, won my first heat, and made it to the finals. I competed with some of the most amazing watermen & longboarders ever, took 6th in Open Longboard and could not wipe the smile off my face all day! Thank you to Kiva Rivers & HASA Maui for another fantastic contest. My dad, who took pictures all day, coached & encouraged me to catch the big set waves and everyone else for your love & support. Truly overwhelmed with joy!
Growing up on Maui, I always heard about “The Cave” and how it was the perfect wave but also how it was gnarly, scary & pretty heavy. For the past three years, I have “competed” in the Legends Of The Bay contest, but I would paddle out and watch everyone catch these perfect waves while I sat there my whole heat. I was always too afraid of “the drop”, so I would never take a wave.
This year that mentality switched for me and my goal was to ride two waves. In my first heat, this perfect set wave came to me & something just clicked inside as I just turned & paddled for the waves without hesitation. It was one of the most perfect waves of my life! I could not stop smiling and could not stop smiling paddling back to the lineup. It was amazing! After my heat, I came in stoked that I had accomplished my goal. It turns out I won my heat which meant I went straight into the finals!
In the finals, I got the opportunity to surf with some of the most amazing watermen in the world and some of the most ripping longboarders ever. The waves were super slow and inconsistent in the final, but I managed to get another perfect set wave! I took sixth in the final out of six but did not care because it felt like first. I had accomplished my goal, surfed The Cave perfect with only six other people out & caught four waves. It was one of the best days of my life, showing me how strong I am and how much stronger my mental game has gotten over the years; focusing on the mind wins first with Suzie Cooney.