The Inertia Gear Editor

The Inertia

It’s been a long wait for waves on the North Shore of Oahu, with windy and small conditions prevailing throughout the first half of the December 8-20 waiting period for the Vans Pipe Masters. Well, the swell has now arrived with a bang, and although, due to the timing of it, there will be only three days of competition instead of four, it looks like those days of competition will have plenty of action.

Pipe is currently pumping, with a long-period swell delivering outer reef roll-ins and throaty standing-room caverns. Today seems poised to deliver the goods we’ve been waiting for. Stay tuned for more action both here (where we’ll be hosting the livestream) and on Men’s round one will be the first to hit the water, with Jamie O’Brien, Koa Smith, Rio Waida and Robbie McCormick. The event kicks off at 8 a.m. HST (10 a.m. PST), and below are some updates to the competition format from Vans.

Competition Notes (Courtesy of Vans):
This is a leaderboard competition. There are no eliminations and each surfer will compete in 2 separate rounds.
Surfers are hunting three high wave scores throughout the rounds for a combined total that will put them in one of the top four positions on the leaderboard to qualify for the Final.


There are three judges. Each judge will award every wave surfed an individual score out of a maximum 10 points. The three judges’ scores are then added for a total ride value out of a maximum of 30 points. A perfect ride would score 30 points.
The most a surfer can post on the leaderboard, based on their best three rides, would be 60 points (2 perfect rides).
The top four surfers after three rounds – based on their top two rides posted through the rounds – will qualify for the final. A surfer’s best two rides can come from any waves they ride during the three rounds.

The results of the Final will be based on each surfer’s best two rides ridden in the final. The highest score a surfer can score in the final is 60 points (based on a maximum 30 points per ride).


Only the best. We promise.


Join our community of contributors.