Matt Wilkinson takes us inside the Rip Curl North Shore house, where both Gabriel Medina and Mick Fanning will be crashing during the Billabong Pipe Masters.
The ASP was good enough to chase down Wilko and get him to make this awesome and slightly awkward video, as well as a Q and A with two of the World Title contenders, and what it’s like to be such, uh, strange bedfellows.
See what the roomies had to say about each other (Q & A by ASP):
ASP: What’s his most annoying habit, as a housemate?
Gabriel Medina: I think I annoy him more than he annoys me because I always end up making more noise than him.
Mick Fanning: Haha! Probably him flying his drone all over the place all day. Thing never stops buzzing us.
ASP: What’s the best part of shacking up with him during the Triple Crown?
GM: To be on the side of a 3-time World Champion – I always learn by watching him. Mick is the perfect example of an athlete.
MF: Just watching him surf out front. We are always on hand to watch him go crazy.
ASP: What’s been the most surprising thing you’ve learned about him?
GM: I always learn by example – he has such a will to train and that has helped me a lot.
MF: I think the thing that blows my mind most is just how big of a star he is in Brazil. We see some of that hysteria at different events for him but back home he’s a massive celebrity.
ASP: What do you two have in common, and what are some of the biggest differences between you?
GM: We like to compete and we both love surfing, but the biggest difference is that he has already won a World Title and I haven’t yet.
MF: We both love surfing, obviously, and I think we both have really strong connections to our families. I really love how family orientated Gabriel is. The biggest differences between us are probably cultural more than anything.
ASP: What’s your daily routine when you stay at the Rip Curl house?
GM: I wake up early, I eat my breakfast and I will surf in front of the house. Usually I’m in my room or living room with my father and my filmmaker Henrique for lunch. Then surf again in the afternoon, dinner and go to sleep before 10 p.m. In the morning I eat a little bit, usually with a hot chocolate. Sometimes before surfing I do a 10-minute warm-up, then surf, take a shower and stay in my room on my phone. At night we have dinner and then go to sleep.
MF: My whole routine depends on the waves. If it’s pumping, I’ll smash a quick coffee and get out there. After a wave I’ll rip into some breakfast – usually some fresh fruit and a smoothie – and then I’ll chill out. If there’s no surf at all, which is rare on the North Shore, I’ll have a coffee and some breakfast and then go for a swim. Training is pretty light during the event window. If I know the event is going to run in the following days I might do some yoga to stay loose.
ASP: Has spending time with him impacted your surfing – strategically, or otherwise? If so, how?
GM: Yes, he has influenced me in the way he prepares for the Championship – his training routine, – he is a perfect example of an athlete, and he is also very mature and experienced, which makes him the favorite for the Title, along with Kelly [Slater].
MF: He’s deadly. He’s good in all conditions and I love his airs. Strategically I’ve learned not to let him scrap around on the inside under priority because the guy can turn a piece of crap wave into a monster score.
ASP: [For Mick] What do you anticipate for him, professionally, and personally?
MF: Like just about everyone, I see nothing but great things for Gabriel Medina in the future. He’s ultra-talented and he’s also as motivated as anyone I’ve ever come across on tour. If he continues to improve, there will be World Titles and probably a big statue on top of one of the mountains of Rio up there next to Christ the Redeemer.