The Inertia

The latest video from Nic Von Rupp flashes back to the day after the Nazare Big Wave Challenge. The competition had been a bit of a mixed bag, especially for Von Rupp. In mostly clean conditions and 35-foot faces, he and teammate Clement Roseyro came in second place, behind Lucas “Chumbo” Chianca and Pedro Scooby. The event all came down to the second heat, where the two teams traded places back and forth, until Chumbo and Scooby were eventually able to lock in the win.

“It was a tough contest yesterday. Probably the worst swell of the season, but we still made it happen,” said Von Rupp in the pre-dawn darkness. “Really sucks, though, when you put so much time and effort into a place and you’re not really able to get the performance and result you wanted to.”

He seems to have taken the loss to heart, but this video is all about Von Rupp shaking it off and looking ahead. In this case, that meant looking straight down one of Portugal’s massive tubes. “Turning the page, going back to something that sits very dear in my heart, which is barrel riding,” said Von Rupp. To achieve that, he headed off to an unnamed spot from his youth.

The trip seemed to put Nazare in the rearview, as well as hit the big-wave aficionado with a bit of nostalgia. “This is my childhood wave. I grew up surfing this wave. It’s been 15-plus years I’ve been coming here,” he said in the parking lot, later that day. “I still remember the first time I rocked up, going down to Praia Grande, my beach, just coming from Hawaii when I was like 16 or 17 years old. I just started driving and I rock up to this perfect left with no one around.”


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