To rest your head on a pillow in the storied Volcom House isn’t just a perk of being Hawaiian. It doesn’t even come ‘cause you got a sticker on your board or you got a bomb the other day at 2nd Reef. A spot in the Volcom House -- and like, the room on the top floor where Gerry Lopez used to sleep -- comes because you earned it.
And you gotta earn it.
Simply put, Oahu’s 20-year-old Zeke Lau is earning his keep. He sleeps up in the room with the booshie-view because he’s motivated, a rabid contest animal, a Pipeline contender and trains like a mother friggin’ maniac.
Why just last season, during Zeke’s second real year pursuing the ‘QS, he just baaaaaarely missed out qualifying. And I mean barely. Even after the Haleiwa Prime, knowing that there was no way he could make the 2014 WCT cut, he STILL went out and gave it hell at the Sunset Cup, winning the event and showing a wide array of ‘QS and ‘CT warriors how deadly he can be.
And with just three Hawaiians on Tour next year (John John, Seabass and Freddy P), realistically, Zeke Lau is the Aloha State’s best chance at new blood for the 2015 World Tour. But even Zeke doesn’t dream that small:
“To me, a world championship is everything,” he says. “If you want it that bad, then you’ll do whatever it takes to get it. But you need some kind of will to win. You need the mindset of a competitive athlete. Even my dad taught me: how you prepare is how you perform.”
‘Cause when it comes to preparation, Zeke Lau is no slouch. He’s been on an NFL-type, run some stairs, stop for push-ups, sprint across the island, kill a wild boar from the mountains with bare hands-style program since high school. And he hasn’t stopped.
‘Cause he can’t stop, won’t stop, baby.
As the Volcom Pipe Pro poises for a solid contest, so does Zeke. A good placing in his sponsor’s own event, let alone a win, is just the kind of opening to a qualifying year this young Hawaiian hopeful needs.
But until then -- Zeke waits for the surf to clean up. From a place in a certain house with perhaps the best view on the North Shore.
How will Zeke do? Continue to check Red Bull Surfing for the latest from the Volcom Pipe Pro and find out.