Kaunaloa, “Loa” for short, has a focus and determination very few have at 14 years old. With a ridiculous amount of talent, and a background in golf and soccer, Loa found his competitive edge early on. Starting his surfing career off with a bang, Kaunaloa won the first NSSA event he ever entered. Three years and countless trips to the podium later, this grom continues to head the pack.
“It was a very easy transition into competitive surfing for Loa. At an early age, he knew how to process information and break down a game plan for his heats,” said Billabong Team Manager and Coach, Rainos Hayes.
This past March, Loa put on a clinic at the NSSA Regional Championships against one of the most talented, packed, and premier field of competitors Hawaii had to offer. Hacking and slashing his way to the top of the podium, Loa won the Explorer Boys division.
Whether he’s shredding Banyans with Charlie Akao, or charging Backdoor with the Moniz brothers, you can always find a smile on this feisty competitor’s face. Never afraid to paddle out with the older boys, Loa is a stand out in any size surf. Watch out for the regional champ this summer.
DOB: February 24, 1999
Weight: 105 lbs.
Hometown: Kailua-Kona, Hawaii
School: Makua Lani Christian School
Grade: 8th Grade
Favorite subject? Science is my favorite subject, because you learn stuff that you don’t always hear and know.
When did you start competing? My first contest was when I was six.
Home break: Banyans
Favorite spot: Haleiwa
Go-to board: Town & Country, 5’5’’/ 17 1/4 / 2 ¼ What does the rest of your quiver look like? 5’4’’/ 5’7’’/ 5’10’’
Favorite surfer and why: Keanu Asing, he’s a good friend and he gives back to the environment.
Do you have any friendly rivalries? Charlie Akao. Charlie and I grew up in the same town and we always surf together. We both push each other to our expectations. He’s a good competitor and a great sport.
What motivates you? Zeke Lau motivates me… how he trains, how he acts around others, his hard work that he puts in, and his dedication.
Besides Hawaii, where else have you surfed? California. Surfed all of Huntington Beach and San Clemente and some of New Port.
What is your biggest accomplishment? Winning Regionals was a really great feeling… Going into that year of NSSA, in a new division, I was the little guy. It made me try my hardest and surf to the best of my ability.
What are your future goals? Do well in school. Where do you see yourself in 5 years? I would like to be some where in the surf scene and be a good example to all of the new generation that is coming up.
Last words for the Freesurf audience: Mahalo and stay tuned for more action!!
3rd Place at 2012 NSSA Explorer Menehune National Championships
1st Place Explorer Boys at the 2013 NSSA HI Regional Championships
2nd Place in age group at HSA State Surfing Championships for 2011