Everyone has this dream. From Rick Kane, Arizona’s wavepool champion and surfer-so-haole-he-don’t-know-he-haole, to grommets worldwide. Arrive in Hawaii as an unknown. Get the wave of your life. And blow the f*ck up.
That’s what happened to Aussie charger Keahi De Aboitiz…sort of. Over the weekend Aboitiz pulled into an unruly backdoor tube and got spit out into anonymous glory. Who was this unsung hero? This sticklerless shredder? The idea of a nameless vigilante tackling monstrous beasts on a tumultuous day at Backdoor was romantic. Only Aboitiz isn’t an underdog charger looking to prove himself. The dude is 3x kitesurfing World Champion and a fearless SUP surfer as well. Which kind of makes this whole thing even cooler. More and more, guys like Kai Lenny and Aboitiz are mastering multiple surf craft disciplines. True watermen.
After being touted as an “unidentified” nominee for the prestigious “Wave of the Winter” award, Aboitiz used his Instagram account and Surfline’s handy camera-rewind function to unmask the mystery and accept his rightful fame.
“Well that was a good way to start 2016!” Aboitiz wrote. “Still can’t believe I lucked into this bomb today at backdoor and so stoked to just sneak out the end of this one. Definitely the biggest roundest barrel I’ve ever paddled into. If anyone knows someone who shot photos or a video of this wave I’d be psyched to see it!”
Luckily for Aboitiz, the wave was captured and eventually, through social media’s magical interconnectivity (read: stalking), the footage and the surfer were found. Now he’s a contender for the WOTW. And he did it in an atypical fashion – braving the unruly days when the regular pecking order calls in sick and finding a hidden gem.
“Other then Kaimana Henry, none of the boys were really out, it was mostly bodyboarders and a bunch of hopeful groms because the Backdoor Shootout opening ceremony was just about to start,” North Shore photog Laserwolf told Surfline. “Just another one of those wonky, dangerous days like we’ve been having the past few weeks where 1/15 waves are good. That was a random sick one. Perfect for the random hero!”