Kelly Slater captures Pipe Masters surf tourney in Hawaii

Dec. 15, 2013 at 9:57 AM

HALAEWA, Hawaii, Dec. 15 (UPI) -- Kelly Slater of the United States put an exclamation point on the pro surfing season this weekend by winning the Billabong Pipe Masters in Hawaii.

The venerable Slater, 41, narrowly defeated 21-ear-old Hawaiian hometown favorite John Florence in the final heat of the tournament, which closed out the Association of Surfing Professionals season.

Slater and Florence navigated towering 10-to-15-foot waves on Oahu's famed North Shore and came away with a 16.37-15.90 victory.

Slater also put to rest speculation that 2013 would be his final season on the pro circuit. "Today is a day I have dreamed about since I was a little kid – big, perfect, West-angled Pipeline and a showdown at the Pipe Masters," he said. "I want more days like this so I'm definitely back next year."

Saturday marked Slater's seventh title at the Billabong Pipe Masters and 56th ASP world tour win.

The Pipe Masters had earlier determined the ASP men's champion for the season. Mick Fanning captured the title in the quarterfinals against fellow Australian Yadin Nicol, but then lost in the semis to Florence.

Like Us on Facebook for more stories from UPI.com  
Latest Headlines
Top Stories
Report: Aldridge steps back to consider plans
First shoe drops in St. Louis Cardinals' hacking scandal
Miami Heat sign first-round F Winslow
Report: Rondo, Belinelli headed to Sacramento Kings
Dallas Mavericks, Jordan near agreement on max contract