Follow Kanoa Igarashi and Steph Gilmore's intense 2019 World Tour finishes
All In, the series that steps inside the minds and lives of some of the best surfers in the world, returns to follow Kanoa Igarashi and Steph Gilmore through the European and Hawaiian World Tour legs.
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Episode 3 - Second Chances
There's no turnaround time between WSL World Tour contests more infamous and challenging than the one between the Quiksilver Pro France and the Rip Curl Pro Portugal. If you're on a roll, you've got to keep the momentum going into a new country, new event and new wave. If you had a bad result, like Kanoa Igarashi and Steph Gilmore did in France in 2019, you've only got a couple days to regroup and come up with a win.
In Episode 3 of All In: Life on the WSL Championship Tour, the tension runs thick in this crucial limbo for Igarashi and Gilmore, during the 2019 European leg. However, both surfers being the elite pros that they are, are ready to rise to the challenge.
For Igarashi, that means finding the focus to take on 11-time world champion and the undisputed GOAT of surfing, Kelly Slater, in their Round of 16 heat. Luckyily for Igarashi, the past is on his side – in their previous two match-ups he'd gotten the best of Slater.
For Gilmore, it's an equally as difficult match-up, as she must face off with Caroline Marks, the then 17-year-old Florida phenom. Prior to this last clash in Portugal, Marks had beaten Gilmore twice, while Gilmore had only beaten Marks once.
Every minute of Episode 3 is another dose of tension, as the 2019 WSL World Tour nears its finish. There's no better way to witness – and experience – the high stakes world of two of the planet's best surfers.
See how it all unfolds for Igarashi and Gilmore in All In: Life on the WSL Championship Tour, now streaming on Red Bull TV.
Episode 2 – La Bataille
Igarashi needed a good result to secure his goal of completing the 2019 World Surf League World Tour season within the top five. Steph needed a good result to still have a chance at winning an eighth world title, which would be a record for women's professional surfing.
In Episode 2 of All In: Life on the WSL Championship Tour, we step into the lives of Igarashi and Gilmore as the Quiksilver and Roxy Pros kickoff in chunky, difficult beachbreak conditions at La Graviere.
Both Igarashi and Gilmore have been relegated to the elimination rounds, and as they both scrap to find decent scoring waves in the difficult conditions, their coach, former World Tour competitor Jake 'The Snake' Patterson, finds himself in a nail-biter of a situation as the clock ticks down. By the buzzer, both Igarashi and Gilmore fall short of advancing. There will be no world title for Gilmore in 2019 and finishing the season in the men's top five is getting less and less likely for Igarashi.
So, how do elite athletes like Igarashi and Gilmore rebound in such gut-wrenching situations, especially when the next event — the Rip Curl Pro Portugal — is just days away?
This is the brilliance of All In — the series that brings you inside the personal lives of the world's best surfers. Regrouping for the next event after a big loss is much more than resetting mentally. It takes more training. More free surfing. Studying the replays of your heats. Finding mental space by spending time with friends and family. It's complex, but essential for athletes as elite as Igarashi and Gilmore. And it's all here in Episode 2. Enjoy the show!
Episode 1 – The French Connection
The French connection
For Kanoa Igarashi, the 2019 WSL World Tour season was a year to prove to the world, himself and his parents that he could not only hold his own among the very best surfers in the world, but also be the rightful flag-bearer of his home country, Japan, which will have the sporting world's eyes on it this summer.
For Steph Gilmore, 2019 was a year to remind the world that she was still one of the best surfers to have ever donned a jersey and intended to remain that way long into the future.
By now, we all know well the outcome of Igarashi and Gilmore's 2019 WSL World Tour seasons: a sixth in the world finish for Kanoa; fourth place for Steph. But what we all missed were the many and deeply personal behind-the-scenes moments that filled the spaces between the spotlight of championship tour heats. The laughs. The traveling. The lay day boredom. The anxiety of competition and the anger of defeat. Essentially, all the reasons for these ultra competitive athletes successes and shortcomings.
In many ways, 2019 was a strange year for Gilmore. She was coming off a 2018 season that had seen her reclaim the world title after an uncharacteristic four-year hiatus from the top (her last title came in 2013). She was relaxed, but too relaxed. Luckily, she'd brought on ace coach and former world tour competitor Jake 'The Snake' Patterson, who, by the Corona Bali Protected, the third stop on the 2019 WSL Women's Tour, had gotten Gilmore back into fighting shape.
But, the momentum didn't hold and by the time the European leg came around in autumn, Gilmore had fallen out of world title contention. Never one to relinquish her fierce competitive drive, though, she nonetheless took the remainder of the season to take stock of her place as one of surfing's greats, the huge strides that women's surfing has taken in recent years and her plans for the future.
As it happened, Igarashi's defining 2019 moment also came at the 2019 Corona Bali Protected – good news for Jake Patterson, who also happens to be Igarashi's coach. With the weight of Japanese surfing's hopes and dreams on his shoulders, Igarashi came through in Bali to take his first-ever World Tour win. Closing out the 2019 season in the Top 10 was a big goal, but the ultimate goal for Igarashi was being able to show his parents, who sacrificed so much to get him to this moment, that all their hard work was worth it.
Perhaps the most surprising aspect of this season's All In however is the close friendship that's developed between Gilmore and Igarashi over the last couple seasons. You'll discover all that here, through five captivating episodes. If you're a fan of pro surfing, there's no better series out there to get inside the minds and personal lives of some of our sport's greats. The journey begins today on Red Bull TV.