Jack Freestone (AUS)
Don’t think a new dad can win the Ultimate Tuberiding Contest? Don’t tell Jack Freestone. Jack has excelled at every level of his career: from winning the World Pro Juniors, to qualifying for the WCT, to now becoming a proud father to baby boy Banks. But fatherhood isn’t slowing Jack down. Now that Banks is old enough to travel, Jack is taking the family along on his second qualification campaign, and making a pit stop at Padang Padang for the Rip Curl Cup. Because who better to teach the grom how to pigdog the barrel than dear ol’ Dad?
Jay Davies (AUS)
Freesurfers may be a dying breed, but a performer like Jay Davies will never go extinct. It doesn’t hurt that the 31-year-old regularfooter from Yallingup, Western Australia is built like a redwood tree. Bred in the rugged waves of West Oz, Jay is at home charging crazy coldwater slabs in shark-infested waters. His blazing freesurf path can be witnessed wherever the waves are going off, from P-Pass to Apocalypse to his beloved North Point, where you’ll also catch him rotating 10 feet above the lip when the wind turns side onshore. But Jay isn’t a contest virgin. In fact, he’s surfed in several WCT events as a wildcard, including at Margaret River in 2015 when he took down two world champions – Mick Fanning and Gabriel Medina ¬– on his way to a quarterfinals finish. Jay can destroy heats the same way he destroys lips, and the crazier the waves at Padang, the better the odds Jay will be coming out on top.