Dusty Payne (HAW), 24, is set to kick off 2013 at the ASP 5-Star Volcom Pipe Pro.
LOS ANGELES, California/USA (Monday, January 28, 2013) -Dusty Payne (HAW), 24, has gone through a series of ups-and-downs over the last two years. After fighting off a devastating injury in 2011, Payne is poised and ready to make a healthy return to competition in 2013 and with a few years of experience under his belt among the ASP Top 34, Payne is hungrier than ever to take on the world’s best surfers. ESPN caught up with the Maui native to hear his thoughts on 2012 and his thoughts on 2013 entering the first qualifying event of the season, the Volcom Pipe Pro. This… is their story…
Xgames: Judging by the photos and swells it seems like you guys were scoring in Maui these past couple of months. Dusty Payne: There were lot of good west/northwest swells and it’s been a good month in Maui. The swells have been kicking in to gear after the holidays, and it’s been pretty fun.
JoliBased on the Surfline forecast the contest will see a 15-foot northwest swell at the start of the Pipe Pro waiting period, which means Payne and company probably won’t have many Backdoor options until things calm down a little.
How was Pe’ahi in the last couple of months? I went out to Jaws on [December] 30th, I caught one wave and I broke my eardrum so I’ve kind of been out of the water for the last three weeks just kind of cruising. That’s heavy. How do you think that will affect you going into the Volcom Pipe Pro? It shouldn’t. It’s been a nice break. It’s good to take some time off surfing. I jumped back into [contest surfing] pretty much after last year’s injury and I haven’t stopped since. So it’s good to have a little break and reset. Now I’m pretty hungry to start surfing and get back into it.
How long were out with that ankle injury last year? It happened [in 2011] and I didn’t take [the ankle injury] too seriously and I didn’t think it was that bad of an injury. Over time it got worse and worse. It sidelined me for about six months, but you know it was good just to rehab and get stronger. It’s feeling good now. What was the official diagnosis of the ankle injury and how long was your rehab? It was a partially torn deltoid and sprained ligament. I was in a walking boot for two months, and then the rehab was probably two and a half to three months.