ATRadio: Waves of Honor
(ATR) When surfer Kanoa Igarashi hits the waves off Japan’s Pacific Coast at next summer’s Tokyo Olympic Games, the moment will be meaningful on multiple levels.
Igarashi’s father Tsutomu was one of Japan’s surfing pioneers, discovering and riding waves at Shidashida, the future Olympic site for 2021. Kanoa, having grown up surfing the shores of southern California as a dual American and Japanese citizen, will represent Japan as the sport makes its Olympic debut.
“Representing their home country, representing our blood as Japanese is my way of honoring my parents and the things they sacrificed for me,” Igarashi tells ATR’s Brian Pinelli in the latest video edition of ATRadio.
He is excited to showcase the beauty and natural elements of surfing on the Olympic stage.
“It’s a huge honor for me and my sport,” says the 22-year-old surfer. “We’re going to bring to the table this sense of mixing Mother Nature with the art of playing with the ocean in a fierce way alongside my competitors. It’s dancing with the ocean and a challenge against Mother Nature.”
Igarashi believes he will be up to the monumental challenge while venturing into uncharted waters.
“We’re going to feel something that we’ve never felt before – Olympic pressure."
Homepage photo: ISA/Sean Evans