There are lots of ways to say “crazy” in this world. And there are lots of ways to surf. Joan Duru makes the pursuit look “crazy-good.” Ten years ago, he and a group of friends ventured to the surfing-rich island nation of Indonesia. Maybe you’ve heard of it? The footage they collected was never released. So Joan went back to do the trip right this time and made sure to get the cut out to the world.
And so, we have PEK, from filmmakers Vincente Kardasik and Alexandre Lesbats, featuring the French goofy-foot in the dreamy waves of said island nation, making them look, well, crazy-good.
“PEK is local slang from Les Landes in France, the area where Joan, myself and all the guys on that boat trip come from,” explains Kardasik. “It’s pretty hard to translate in English, the closest may be, ‘crazy.’ PEK refers to someone always pushing it a bit too much, during a surf, a party or in everyday life… In a good way or in a bad way. It’s a bit like Mexicans do with ‘loco.’ You never know if it’s a good or a bad thing to be called ‘loco’ but as long as it comes from your friends, it’s okay.”
We’re releasing PEK exclusively here on The Inertia for the next 48 hours. I caught up with Joan to talk about all that’s right in the world. Crazy or otherwise:
So this film was a long time in the making?
It’s been like 10 years. We tried to go with all our friends and my girlfriend (Maud Le Car), it was a mission to have everybody together. All of my good friends couldn’t come so we got other guys from France. Good surfers, some young guys, and that ended up being a really funny mix. It was so cool, there was no pressure, everyone was surfing, having beers. We went just after Bells, before Bali, just in the 10 days we had. It was good to just go surf.
You’re ranked 26 right now heading into Pipe, outside of requalifying. How are you feeling?
It was a long year, with the QS I made a mistake (of competing too much). Now I get a bigger break from contest surfing. I’m pretty tired after a tight year.
Are you feeling pressure with Pipe coming up?
I’ve spent three years on tour (so I’m used to it now). If Pipe is good, I hope to have good waves and make a good result. I had a bad back all year and I got injured during a QS event when I fell on some rocks and hurt my shoulder and leg just before France so that made that contest tough. I’m just feeling better now as it was a pretty bad injury. But I’m gonna be ready for Hawaii. For sure there’s some pressure, I just want to try to have good waves and know if I don’t re-qualify, I’ll do more edits and try to requalify next year.
Are you kind of over competing?
No, I like to compete. I really like it, just to push myself. I don’t know if I didn’t have contests if I’d be able to push myself the same. I really like it, it’s just been a long year. I definitely want to do fewer contests next year, though.
At the Surf Ranch it was rad to see the French crew rolling together.
It’s really cool. I’ve known Jeremy (Flores) and Michel (Bourez) since we were kids. We didn’t see each other too much for a while but now we’re back on tour together and it’s great to have that support, with friends. They’re easy to travel with and it’s nice so you don’t feel so alone out there (when you’re competing).
I notice from your Instagram page that you like to dabble in a few other pursuits, like foiling and you get on the mountain bike once in a while, too.
I just started foiling one year ago or so. It’s cool when there are no waves. And yeah, this a good place to mountain bike. There are really cool forest trails I get out on a couple times a week when I’m home just to keep in shape. But I like it too.
Are you ever worried you’re gonna wreck yourself though, like Julian Wilson did?
It can happen for sure, to fall or take out a tree. When I go downhill you can get going pretty fast. Sometimes I try to go slower. If it happens it happens, though.
Cest la vie, right?