Vela, John John Florence’s latest episodic film on youtube documents his expedition to the Palmyra Atoll in the Line Islands. Rumours of his fascination with sailing have if anything been understated.
“I’m super thankful to have met so many awesome people in the sailing world,” says Florence. “When I go on these big race boats, I’m a beginner, and I’m trying to learn everything and I’m so excited, and I can come back to surfing and look at it with a totally different mindset. With a different framework.”
It is often thought that the best surfers tend to get inspired by sometimes unrelated influences, and it seems that sailing has played a critical role in expanding Florence’s approach to surfing.
“I love surfing and competing, and that’s where I put the majority of my time, but getting injured this year kinda gave me that silver lining to go sailing and do this dream trip I’ve been wanting to do. I just wanted to do an open ocean trip and go somewhere that none of us had been. I was pretty nervous about a trip this big.”
John John’s respect for local knowledge is evident, “What Nainoa (Thompson) and the Hokule’a team has done to explore and sail around the world navigating off their knowledge of the ocean and their knowledge of the stars has shown me how knowledge can be freedom.”
Florence and his crew, consisting of Kona Johnson, Nathan Florence, Jacques Vincent, and Eric Knutson, are committed to finding out for themselves. We’re excited to watch the journey unfold.
Enjoy all four episodes below:
[Watch: Vela | John John Florence]