For her first year on the woman Dream Tour, rookie Malia Manuel was devastating finishing at the 6 th place of the ASP Women’s World Championship Tour with 3 five places, 2 third place and ruuner up of the Commonwealth Bank Beachley Classic.
Johann Mouchel caught her to know who is the O'NEILL teamate's phenom. Enjoy.
When did you start surfing and why ?
Both my parents surf so I was always at the beach since I was young. I started tandem surfing with my dad when I was two years old. He'd catch a wave, pick me up, and I'd stand on his shoulders.
Describe your home surf spot ?
My home surf spot is a fun, unpredictable beach break.
How did you first get involved with O'Neill ?
I won one of their Junior pro contests about five years ago and have been with them ever since.
A word on Sage ?
Sage has a great sense of style and has one of the strongest backside turns on tour.
Did qualification to the ASP World Tour change your life ? How ?
It hasn't really changed my life. I have been doing contests since I was 8, so making the Tour was my way of finally reaching the highest point of competitive surfing. I do travel a lot more which has effected my life, but traveling is the funnest part!
Is the ASP World Tour like you imagined it ?
Yes, I travel a lot and it has been such a great learning experience. Every contest this year is a challenge, and I've been learning so much from just traveling and competing with the best girls in the world.
Is it hard to be a rookie on the tour ?
It's more of a challenge for a rookie on tour. I haven't been to many of the places where the events are held, so it's a new challenge and learning experience for me. I have to adjust to certain lifestyle changes and also have to get use to the different types of waves.
Who are you traveling with on the Dream Tour ?
This year I am traveling with my mom.
You still competing on wqs event ?
Yes I've done the WQS along with the WCT this year. We don't have many events on the ASP World Tour so I keep busy with the QS as a back up.
Which surfers inspire you the most ?
I am really inspired by Bethany Hamilton and Steph Gilmore. Bethany is the perfect figure of the word inspiration. And I admire Steph's style, power and good vibes.
Is your goal to be world champ in the future ?
Yes for sure, I want to earn a World Title in the years to come.
What do you have to improve in your surfing ?
I think surfing is always evolving and progressing. So I strive to keep up with everyone's progression as well as learning the new technology and training outside of the water.
You made a devastating entry on the Dream Tour, how do you explain so many good results ?
I've been doing contests since I was 8 years old, so every now and then I better pull a good result off!
This year was supposed to be about Carissa Moore and Sally Fitzgibbons race plus Steph come back, but the rookie are killing ?
Yeah, this year has been quite a stir up with the different results from the girls.
I think it's cool to see everyone have their moment. It makes it so much more exciting but also stressful for the girls in contention for the World Title.
I think every contest on the World Tour is intense. My concern is just trying to re-qualify through the World Tour and not have to do every single qualifying event at the end of the year.
The hawaiian armada is blowing up, you, Carissa, Coco, Nage and Alessa, queen Melanie Bartels should be happy ! How do you explain this hawaiian wave ?
I believe growing up surrounded by the Pacific Ocean had a lot to do with our Hawaiian surfer girl movement.
We also have an extremely great support crew from our parents to coaches to trainers so that always helps.
Lee Ann Curren says the girls level is higher and higher but the waves on tour are not that good, are you agree ?
Yes, Lee Ann is exactly right. The waves have been a bit disappointing so you haven't seen what the girls are really capable of.
Almost a season on 4 months, is it a hard rythm ? How do you cope with ?
I haven't had five months off without a contest yet so I'm not sure how that feels.
Any other extrem sports ?
No, nothing extreme.
Hawaii means big wave surfing, are you involved in such surfing like Kealla Kennelly ?
I love going out on the jet ski and towing in but I don't think I'll ever charge as hard as Keala Kennelly at Teahupo'o!
No Hawwaiian event that a pity ?
Let's talk about you, what are you doing when you're not surfing ?
I love running, hiking, and yoga.
You're very beautifull, any special training to stay in shape ?
I have an extreme intent on eating healthy and exercising a crazy amount.
Everybody shows their body, are we going to see you in stab mag ?
I love Stab but I wouldn’t feel comfortable doing a revealing shoot like that
What would be like the perfect trip for you ?
Hopping around the South Pacific islands w/ the dream team
Last one Who is Malia ?
A simple Island girl.