DANIEL / KEREOPA

New Zealand Surfing - - Introducing -

Grow­ing up on the points of our most iconic wave in raglan, Daniel Kereopa early on in his ca­reer be­came a threat to any­one he surfed against even as a 14-year-old. He won the U18 Na­tional Ti­tle in 95 and 96. DK picked up a 2nd place in the U16 and a 3rd in the U18’s of the Quik­sil­ver World Grom­met Ti­tles in Bali in the early 90’s. He com­peted in the Aus­tralasian Pro-Ju­nior se­ries mak­ing sev­eral fi­nals plac­ing se­cond in a cou­ple of events. DK then took on the WQS World Tour Cir­cuit for a cou­ple of years with his high­est end of year rank­ing be­ing 153rd, his best re­sult was a 5th at the O'Neill Surf Chal­lenge 4-Star at An­glet France. Dur­ing the late 90’s DK be­gan to broaden his surf­ing hori­zons and re­ally im­mersed him­self in the Big Wave arena as well as rid­ing Long­boards. In 2002 DK won the Quik­sil­ver Rex Von Huben Big Wave Chal­lenge held in the Deep South, and stick­ing with the big wave topic DK won the 2007 Aus­tralasian Oak­ley Big Wave Awards “Big­gest Pad­dle Wave”. 2007 was also to bring more ac­co­lades for DK when he won his long awaited Na­tional Open Ti­tle and also at the same event won the se­nior and long­board di­vi­sions for the three-peat. DK was all the time ex­pand­ing his reper­toire in ocean go­ing craft and he be­came a master of SUP Surf­ing also win­ning the Na­tional Cham­pi­onships in 2011 and 2013. In 2015 The Ul­ti­mate Water­man event was held in NZ and DK utilised his across the board skills and took out the in­au­gu­ral ti­tle over many dif­fer­ent Wa­ter­sport dis­ci­plines in­clud­ing short­board, long­board, SUP. In be­tween all of this DK was a mas­sive in­flu­ence in pi­o­neer­ing tow surf­ing here in NZ from the year 2000 on and has pi­o­neered and rid­den many of the big­gest waves ever seen and rid­den here in NZ.

ABOVE: DK took big wave surf­ing to a whole new level, calm and poised on a gi­ant. Photo: Cory

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