ONLINE CHAT WITH WOMEN'S CHAMPION CARISSA MOORE
Thursday, August 26, 2004 | Written by Janice Aragon
ONLINE CHAT WITH THE NATIONAL OPEN, EXPLORER AND INTERSCHOLASTIC CHAMPION!
by NSSA Executive Director Janice Aragon
August 25, 2004
Eleven-year-old surfing prodigy Carissa Moore has been tearing up competitions left and right since she first took to the waves at age five. She started competing in NSSA a couple years ago and got invited to her first Nationals in 2003 taking third in the Mini Grom final. Being able to successfully claim one National title is no easy accomplishment and three titles is near impossible, but this pint-sized dynamo made it look fun at this year’s championships. Carissa kicked off 2004 Nationals week destroying the Middle School Girls final in the National Interscholastic Championships at Salt Creek. A few days later she took her show to Lowers turning up the heat on her older rivals becoming the youngest surfer ever to win both the prestigious Open Women’s/Governor’s Cup trophy and the Explorer Women’s title. At the National Awards Banquet, the crowd watched in awe as she politely claimed her three crowns while graciously dedicating her Governor’s Cup trophy to shark attack victim Bethany Hamilton. Now a national celebrity, this chipper young lady made it clear to the world that she is no ordinary surfer girl.
CHECK OUT THE NSSA NATIONAL "TRIPLE CROWN" CHAMPION!
FULL NAME: Carissa Kainani Moore
AGE: I'll be 12 on Friday!
HOMETOWN: Honolulu, Hi
SCHOOL: Punahou School.
YEARS SURFING: About 7
SPONSORS: Roxy, Nezzy Surfboards, Jamba Juice, Sticky Bumps, Turbo Surf
FAVORITE BOARD: A 5'2" Red faced tiki board thruster named "Nalu Kai" (I name all my boards now)
HOW DID YOU GET INTO SURFING? My dad taught me how.
WAS IT EASY TO LEARN FOR YOU? I'm not sure. I don't really remember, but it was probably a little difficult at first and then it got easier and easier, I think. It was a long time ago.
HOW MUCH TIME DO YOU SPEND SURFING? Average about 2 hours a day.
HOW OLD WERE YOU WHEN YOU STARTED COMPETING? I was around 5 years old. My dad entered me into the Haleiwa Menehuene contest.
WHAT IS YOUR LOCAL SURF SPOT? Kaisers.
OK, NOW THAT YOU’RE THE NATIONAL CHAMP, IS IT EASIER OR HARDER FOR YOU TO GET WAVES IN THE LINEUP? The same. No one's really been cutting me any slack.
WHAT BOARD WERE YOU RIDING AT THE NATIONALS? I rode something similar to what I'm riding now, but it didn't have a tiki on it, but it had a smiley face.
DESCRIBE A TYPICAL DAY IN THE LIFE OF CARISSA MOORE. If I'm with my dad we usually surf in the morning, then off to school, do homework, surf again maybe, then dinner and to bed. If I'm with my mom I just go to school.
WELL CARISSA, YOU’RE THE RIPE OLD AGE OF ELEVEN YEARS OLD AND YOU ALREADY HAVE THREE NATIONAL TITLES UNDER YOUR BELT. YOU MUST FEEL PRETTY GOOD ABOUT THAT! I feel very honored.
HOW DID IT FEEL BEATING SOME OF THE GIRLS THAT ARE MORE THAN FIVE YEARS OLDER THAN YOU? I'm not sure how I felt about beating the older girls. Of course, it was great to beat Karina Petroni because she stole a lot of my waves this summer when she came to visit.
HOW DID YOU CELEBRATE YOUR THREE NATIONAL TITLES? I just went home and enjoyed the rest of my summer. And guess what, I still don't have my trophies, I think Rachael, the team manager from Roxy lost them.
HEY YOU BETTER CALL RACHAEL AND GET THOSE BACK BECAUSE WE’RE GOING TO WANT TO GET SOME PHOTOS OF YOU WITH YOUR GOLD! EVERYONE THOUGHT YOU WOULD BE COMPETING IN THE US OPEN THIS SUMMER BUT YOU DIDN’T ENTER. WHY WAS THAT? Well, after NSSA Nationals my dad said I did good enough for the summer so I just concentrated on my free surfing. Maybe next year. Hey maybe we can have the US Open at Trestles, that would be cool!
GOOD THOUGHT BUT I’M PRETTY SURE THE US OPEN HAS IT’S PERMANENT HOME IN SURF CITY, HB! SO I SEE THAT YOU TRAVEL WITH YOUR DAD CHRIS TO ALL THE CONTESTS. IS HE YOUR COACH? Yes. And he is one of the best coaches ever!
DO YOU TRAIN FOR THE CONTESTS? IF SO WHERE DO YOU TRAIN AND WHAT DO YOU DO? Well, I don't really train by running or swimming or anything. I just surf and prepare by my dad coaching me during my sessions.
DO YOU REMEMBER YOUR FIRST NSSA CONTEST? It was at PK's on Kauai two years ago. I don't remember it too much. Sorry, I need to work on my memory skills.
SINCE YOU LIVE IN HAWAII, YOU MUST ALREADY BE USE TO SURFING BIG WAVES. WHAT AND WHERE ARE THE BIGGEST WAVES YOU HAVE SURFED? I surfed some big Haleiwa before the Roxy Pro last year. My dad made me. He wanted me to survive if the waves were big during my heat.
DO BIG POWERFULWAVES SCARE YOU? Yes, of course! Don't they scare you?
WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE SURF SPOT? Kaisers.
WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE MANUEVER? Barrels and 360s.
WHAT WAS GOING THROUGH YOUR MIND IN THE OPEN WOMENS FINAL AT THE NATIONALS? Have fun, try my best, and no pressure. Well maybe a little pressure, I was a little nervous.
WHAT ARE YOUR FAVORITE THINGS TO DO OTHER THAN SURFING? I like hanging out with friends and family and I like school. Call me crazy!
DO YOU READ? HAVE YOU READ ANY GOOD BOOKS LATELY? Yes, I read, but I haven't read any good books lately - it's still summer, until tomorrow that is, I go back to school tomorrow! Maybe, I'll read something next week. I'll get back to you on this one.
HOW ABOUT TV? WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE TV SHOW? TV's cool, but I try not to be too much of a couch potato. My favorite show is Full House.
DO YOU HAVE ANY BROTHERS OR SISTERS AND DO THEY SURF? I have one little sister, Cayla, and she's a little ripper.
WHO WAS YOUR FIRST SPONSOR AND HOW DID YOU GET THEM? My first sponsor was Roxy. I got them because my daddy knew somebody who knew somebody.
WHO IS YOUR FAVORITE NSSA SURFER? I don't have a favorite. I like everyone. Bethany and Ezekiel are fun to surf with, and John John, too, even though he doesn’t seem too thrilled when I'm around.
WHO IS YOUR FAVORITE PRO SURFER? My favorite pro surfers are Mick Fanning, Kelly Slater, Melanie Bartels, and Sofia Mulonivich. These are my favorite surfers because there is something unique about each one of them.
WHO HAS BEEN THE BIGGEST INFLUENCE IN YOUR SURFING? My dad.
WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE THING ABOUT COMPETING IN THE NSSA? I like to surf against my friends.
WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE THING ABOUT COMING TO THE NATIONALS? Surfing Trestles and seeing all of my friends from all over.
THANK YOUS: I'd like to thank my family and friends, especially my little sister who keeps me on my toes! And my sponsors, they're cool. And God, he's been pretty good to me!