Interview by Chris Latronic
Maui-born Imaikalani DeVault is a pretty talented surfer. Already big for his age, Imai has made his presence among the junior ranks noticed. Equipped with natural surfing ability, smooth stylish turns and an air reverse he could do in his sleep, Imai is one grom to keep your eyes on.
DOB: November 12,1997
Height/Weight: 5’7, 130 lbs.
Stance: Regular foot
Favorite Maneuver: Barrels
Favorite post session grinds: Spam musubis
Where is your home surf break?
“Ho‘okipa Beach Park on the north shore of Maui. It was the first place I learned to surf. It’s great because there are always waves no matter what season it is, and it’s always consistent. I like surfing Pavilions because the rights are fun for connecting turns and boosting.”
Tell me about your first wave.
“First wave was caught at Launiopoko when I was 4 years old. My dad took me out on his longboard. We caught a small wave and we both stood up. I wanted to go and catch another one right after that.”
What does your quiver look like?
“All Kazumas. Shortboards, usually 5’10 and step ups are 6’2.”
Who are your favorite surfers?
“John John Florence is the man because I love his crazy airs and unbelievable barrel riding. I also really like watching Dane Reynolds surf because he is always looking to do something super progressive.”
Favorite Surf Spot?
“Honolua Bay on the northwest side of Maui. Not only do I know all the uncles and can get plenty waves, but it’s one of the best waves in the world. You can get the barrel of your life many times over… and I love getting barreled!”
Any non-surfing activities?
Do you have any friendly rivalries?
“I have rivalries with all my friends I always surf against, Seth Moniz is definitely one of them. He rips super hard, is very competitive and is always one of the top guys. I like surfing with guys like him, they really force me to up my game.”
Do you cross-train for surfing?
“Not really. Surfing as much as I can is my normal training. I guess I do a bit of swimming and running in my school’s physical education program at Kamehameha Schools Maui campus. But other than that, just surf as much as I can.”
Where has surfing taken you?
“Bali, Japan, Tahiti and Nicaragua. All great experiences and really awesome trips. I love being able to surf new and exotic places. It’s good to get away from home once in a while and see what the rest of the world is doing, I enjoy it a lot.”
Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
“Competing and trying to make it to the pro circuit. I’ll probably be doing WQS events until I reach my ultimate goal of qualifying for the prestigious World Championship Tour.”
What is your biggest accomplishment?
“I haven’t had a huge win yet, but I got equal ninth at the ISA World Juniors in Nicaragua just recently. Also placed 4th in the Open Juniors at State Nationals 2012 Huntington. Oh yeah, and I got 2nd in the USA Championships in 2011.”
Any advice for the Freesurf audience?
“Go big or go home.”
Creatures of Leisure