8 December, 2015 8 December, 2015

Fearless Frank Wins 2015 Monster Pitstop

It was incredibly close between three standout rides in the Pit of the Year finals in the end. But after all the votes* were counted, Frank Solomon has emerged as the 2015 champ for the Monster Pitstop in association with O’Neill, Vestal, Skullcandy and Neff, and shares the grand prize worth over R30 000** with videographer Peter Clyne.

Frank’s winning ride was filmed by Peter Clyne at Mullaghmore in Ireland.

“Frank’s wave for me has all the elements of an ultimate monster pit,” said Paul Canning from O’Neill when dropping his vote for this season’s champ. “Size, cold water, heavy slab, big boils and unpredictable falling lip; Frank takes it all in his stride and surfs it incredibly well!”

The remaining judges’ votes from Monster Energy and Zigzag were split between Twiggy’s massive pit at Puerto Escondido and Adin Jeenes’ long tube in Indo respectively, which meant that it came down to the public to decide who’d be claiming this season’s main prize. And with Frank’s ride securing the bulk of the 921 public votes cast, the win was his.

Frank has made an heroic comeback after a spine-crunching wipeout in Ireland last year.

“When I broke my back in Ireland last year it was a real low point in my life,” admitted the Hout Bay charger. “I thought my career was over, lying there in hospital while I was supposed to be going to America to hopefully sign a deal with Hurley International. So to come full circle and just being able to surf again, never mind in Ireland, I am so very grateful. Humbled would be a better word, because at those low points in life you start doubting things.”

“When I paddled for that wave it was just instinct, I guess. There were two big steps that I had to negotiate in the beginning, which you can see in the video. This meant I couldn’t straighten out, so I just pulled up into it and from there it was one of the craziest rides of my life. I never thought I would make it because I couldn’t see a thing after getting one glimpse of the biggest barrel I’ve ever been in. But I felt my way out and then just sat out there for like an hour, grateful and humbled by the opportunities I have been given.”

Adin Jeenes’ epic Indo tube secured second spot with 32.42% of the final vote.

Twig’s giant barrel at Puerto Escondido earned a vote from the judging panel to finish in third with 21.4% overall.

Go to monsterpits.co.za to check out all of the 2015 Monster Pitstop entries.


• The public vote and judging panel’s vote is split 50-50
• This means each of the three judge’s votes count 16.67% of the overall vote (to make up the judges’ 50% of the vote).
• The public vote for each surfer is then worked out as a percentage of the total number of public votes across all contestants and divided by two to work out how much it contributes to the other 50%.
It sounds complicated, but makes sense when you do the sums. So let’s do the maths for the top three rides that were in the running for Pit of the Year:

Frank Solomon
1x judge’s vote = 16.67%
Total public votes across all the finalists = 921
Frank’s public votes: 395 = 9.45% of 921 / 2 = 21.45%
= 38.12% of votes overall

Adin Jeenes
1x judge’s vote = 16.67%
Total public votes across all the finalists = 921
Adin’s public votes: 290 = 9.45% of 921 / 2 = 15.75%
= 32.42% of votes overall

Twiggy Baker
1x judge’s vote = 16.67%
Total public votes across all the finalists = 921
Twiggy’s public votes: 87 = 9.45% of 921 / 2 = 4.73%
= 21.4% of votes overall


For the Surfer:
R15 000 cash + Vestal Heirloom Watch valued at R5,500

For the Videographer:
R10 000 cash + Skullcandy Air Raid Speaker valued at R1,999


1 Comment

  1. Rian
    17 December, 2015 at 2:17 pm · Reply

    Ja nee, Twig’s ride is insane- a well deserved finalist.
    Adin’s ride is the one we all dream of scoring.
    But frank’s ride is in a whole other class – a clear stand out winner. It’s the ride that none of us would want anything to do with. Two steps down the face, big and shifty, ice cold… well done bru. you deserve it.
    now go out there and charge! we want to see more! yee-haa!

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