By Andrea Swayne
Age: 10, Concordia Elementary
Hagan Johnson won the Boys 10U shortboard division at the San Clemente Ocean Festival Groms Rule Surf Contest on Sunday, a victory that marked his third time earning top honors at the annual event.
“On my first wave I did one good turn, raced to the closeout section and kicked out. I felt like I got a good score but I knew I needed a back-up,” he said. “Then I caught a right, right next to the pier, and hit to the lip, pumped to the closeout section and landed an air.”
With two good scores under his belt Hagan decided that he could be patient and wait for a good set to make sure and get yet another good back-up wave.
His strategy worked and he claimed the win at the home break he’s been surfing nearly every day for seven years. And Hagan feels local knowledge played a big part in his continued success there.
“On a south swell it pushes away from the pier and sometimes surfers who aren’t real familiar with the break don’t know that and can be scared to take off toward the pier,” he said. “Going right toward the pier is my favorite.”
Hagan will continue his pursuit of a future pro surfing career—along with pro golfing and skateboarding—and is looking forward to competing in both the WSA and NSSA series in the upcoming season.