IGARASHI Kanoa

1 Oct 1997
23
Male
SANTA MONICA, CA
 
United States of America
HUNTINGTON BEACH, CA
 
United States of America

Events and Medals

Discipline Event Rank Medal
SRF Surfing Men 2 Silver Medal

Schedule

Change
Start Time Location Event Status
Tsurigasaki Surfing Beach
Finished
Tsurigasaki Surfing Beach
JPN
IGARASHI KIGARASHI Kanoa
14.00
INA
WAIDA RWAIDA Rio
12.00
Finished
Tsurigasaki Surfing Beach
JPN
IGARASHI KIGARASHI Kanoa
12.60
USA
ANDINO KANDINO Kolohe
11.00
Finished
Tsurigasaki Surfing Beach
JPN
IGARASHI KIGARASHI Kanoa
17.00
BRA
MEDINA GMEDINA Gabriel
16.76
Finished
Tsurigasaki Surfing Beach
JPN
IGARASHI KIGARASHI Kanoa
6.60
BRA
FERREIRA IFERREIRA Italo
15.14
Finished

Biographical Information

Highlights

:
World Surfing Games
RankEventYearLocationResult
2Shortboard2021El Sunzal, ESA13.74
2Shortboard2018Tahara, JPN13.67
13Shortboard2019Miyazaki, JPN12.90

WSL Championship Tour (Ranking)
RankEventYearLocationResult
6Shortboard201940185
10Shortboard201830520
17Shortboard201727200
20Shortboard201624250

WSL Championship Tour overview - Three best ranks per season and event since 2017
YearShortboard
20211 x 3rd, 2 x 5th, 2 x 9th
20191 x 1st, 1 x 3rd, 2 x 5th
20181 x 3rd, 1 x 4th, 1 x 5th
20172 x 3rd, 1 x 5th, 1 x 9th
20161 x 2nd, 4 x 13th

WSL Championship Tour - Ten best performances in last Olympic cycle
RankYearEventLocation
12019ShortboardKeramas, INA
22016ShortboardBanzai Pipeline, HI, USA
32021ShortboardLemoore, CA, USA
32019ShortboardPeniche, POR
32018ShortboardJeffreys Bay, RSA
32017ShortboardBanzai Pipeline, HI, USA
32017ShortboardPeniche, POR
42018ShortboardLemoore, CA, USA
52021ShortboardNarrabeen, NSW, AUS
52021ShortboardBanzai Pipeline, HI, USA
52019ShortboardJeffreys Bay, RSA
52019ShortboardRio de Janeiro, BRA
52018ShortboardPeniche, POR
52017ShortboardSan Clemente, CA, USA
:
Golf. (olympicchannel.com, 31 Mar 2020)
:
Athlete
:
English, Japanese, Portuguese, Spanish
:
Tom Whitaker [personal], AUS; Wade Sharp [national], RSA
:
His younger brother Keanu is also a professional surfer. The two brothers surfed in the same contest for the first time in 2017 in the Shoe City Pro, the first qualifying series event of the 2017 Championship Tour. (worldsurfleague.com, 22 Feb 2020; colors-magazine.com, 04 Jun 2019; latimes.com, 19 Jan 2017)
:
He underwent surgery on a broken left leg at age 14 in Australia. (YouTube channel, 08 Nov 2020; huffingtonpost.jp, 09 May 2020)
:
He first tried surfing at age three in Hawaii, United States of America, and learned to surf growing up in Huntington Beach, California. By age nine he had joined the US youth team. (surfnews.jp, 22 Nov 2019; sports.yahoo.co.jp, 09 Dec 2019; redbull.com, 2019; YouTube channel, 08 Nov 2020)
:
His father Tsutomu Igarashi was a passionate surfer, and moved to the United States of America in 1995 with the goal of raising their children in a surfing environment. "Growing up with my father, I had always thought surfing looked interesting. It was cool, so I wanted a surfboard, too. For me I feel freedom and feel myself when I'm in the ocean and surfing. That's when I am the purest version of myself." (worldsurfleague.com, 13 Apr 2019; surfnews.jp, 22 Nov 2019; sports.yahoo.co.jp, 09 Dec 2019; projectdesign.jp, May 2019; redbull.com, 24 Apr 2020; GQ Japan YouTube channel, 20 Nov 2019)
:
To win gold at the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo. (surfnews.jp, 22 Nov 2019)
:
"I spend four to six hours a day in the water. I feel like I get to go out there and play games with the ocean. I have this spiritual connection, which might sound like ridiculous craziness to an outsider, but I really do." (redbull.com, 24 Apr 2020)
:
Winning the 2019 Bali Protected event in Keramas, Indonesia. (YouTube channel, 08 Nov 2020; GQ Japan YouTube channel, 20 Nov 2019)
:
US surfer Kelly Slater, US American football player Odell Beckham Jr., English footballer David Beckham, British racing driver Lewis Hamilton, US basketballers LeBron James and Michael Jordan. (redbull.com, 24 Apr 2020; YouTube channel, 08 Nov 2020; huffingtonpost.jp, 09 May 2020)
:
US surfer Kelly Slater. (YouTube channel, 08 Nov 2020)
:
"When you're in the ocean, you're surrounded by it, you feel it inside your fingers. The waves are crashing at you and it's like this force of nature. So it might sound pretty weird, but there are days where I get out of the water and just tell the ocean how grateful I am to have it in my life." (redbull.com, 24 Apr 2020)
:
He was named Surfer of the Year at the 2019 Japan Action Sports Awards. (surfnews.jp, 22 Nov 2019)

General Interest

Preferred stance
Regular (worldsurfleague.com, 13 Apr 2019)

General
REPRESENTING JAPAN
He was born and raised in the United States of America, and represented his country of birth at junior level. In 2018 he switched to represent Japan to honour his parents' heritage. "Growing up in Huntington Beach and surfing through the amateur and professional systems here has made me who I am as a surfer. I have so much support here in the USA and America will always be part of who I am. [But] I've grown up with a lifestyle and in a generation where things can seem a bit borderless. And so representing Japan felt like a solid, comfortable decision. My blood is 100 percent Japanese. That's something that you don't change." His father Tsutomu 'Tom' and mother Misa, originally moved to Huntington Beach, CA, in 1995 because his father was a surfer and wanted to raise a family in a good environment for the sport. (bloomberg.com, 26 Sep 2019; sankei.com, 27 Sep 2019; projectdesign.jp, May 2019; surfnews.jp, 27 Apr 2018; asahi.com, 07 Jul 2019; stabmag.com, 01 Jun 2019; redbull.com, 24 Apr 2020)

FATHER'S BREAK
His father grew up surfing the Tsurigasaki beach break in Ichinomiya, Chiba prefecture, where the surfing competition for the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo is to be held. "He and his friends discovered that wave. They climbed through fences and hiked through the grass to find this wave, and they called it the Dojo, and it was their little secret spot. And it's definitely a very emotional, special connection for him - a wave that he discovered is where his son will compete at the Olympics for the first time. It's such a crazy, full circle. It's definitely a wave that suits my surfing. It's technical and precise. It's just in my blood, being Japanese, to be precise and technically sound. Every little arm movement and movement will make a big difference and there will be little room for error. And the break is really close to the beach, close to the fans. I've always been kind of a show-off. I want people to be close. I want people to feel it. I want to see people's faces and that's when I shine." (redbull.com, 24 Apr 2020)

EXTENDED FAMILY
His extended family live in Japan, and he has gained celebrity status in Japan following regular appearances on Japanese television shows. "When I first started appearing on TV over here in Japan, I was the Japanese kid growing up in America, doing well in contests, and that's when I really started feeling that I had a lot of Japanese supporters and I really started to feel the Japanese inside of me start to become stronger. My grandma [in Japan] told me, 'All I want to do is stay alive until the Olympics, and after that I don't care if I die'. And I was like, 'What? Don't say that.' But she said, 'I've gone through a lot in my life. I've done everything that I wanted to do. But once the Olympics were announced and you told me that you were going to be in it, that's the last thing on my bucket list. Then my life will be complete.' I feel very privileged and honoured to just have them be so proud of me. It makes me want to do my best." (surfnews.jp, 18 Feb 2020; redbull.com, 24 Apr 2020)

IMPORTANCE OF OLYMPICS
He has said that representing Japan at the Olympic Games and winning a gold medal would be more significant than winning multiple world tour titles. "Whether I win or lose, the Olympics are the biggest opportunity I'll ever have in my life. It [winning Olympic gold] will be worth more than winning 15 world titles, and more attainable too, because it's obviously only one contest. Plus, for all we know, it could be the first and last one ever. The thing is, so many people have won world titles. I'm not talking down on them, I've obviously trained my whole career to win a world title, but a gold medal in surfing is different. It's unique. No one has it. So I think for me, I'd rather win a gold medal just because of how everything has aligned. It almost feels like it was made for me." (stabmag.com, 01 Jun 2019)

NAME
His

Legend
:
Silver Medal
:
Gold Medal Event
:
Silver Medal Event
:
Bronze Medal Event
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