Slater Trout is typically a top contender in every big race from Hawaii to the east coast, but this year, the dominant teen from Maui has been MIA. Trout won the Distance Race at the Surftech Shootout and Sand Duel earlier this year, but then seemed to sneak back to Maui, and into hiding. We wondered if Trout's been getting some serious quality time with his new Hollywood girlfriend or hitting the books hard, so we caught up with him to find out what he’s been up to and where he’s headed. —Shari Coble

SUP mag: We haven't seen much of you this year. What's been going on?
Trout: Basically, I've just been focusing on school because I graduate and am ASB president this year. So, I'm just excited to finish high school and then start my life and really focus on my career. As soon as school is over, I can start the next chapter and really focus on training, paddling, competing, and traveling. There's going to be lots of time to really focus, so I'm excited because I haven't really had that this year.
The last race I did [before Ho'olaulea] was the Surftech Shootout in Santa Cruz, and that was good. That was like my first race of 2013, or first race of the season and I won that, so that gave me a lot of confidence going into this race and this year.

SUP mag: What will you be up to this summer?
Trout: In the next few months I'll be traveling a lot on the mainland. I'm going to go to Idaho for a little while and I'll be in California for a little bit for a couple races down in Southern California. Then I'll be in Florida doing some races and stuff, but then the Battle of the Paddle is at the end of the summer. And that's my main goal right now, is winning the Battle of the Paddle, so I'll be working my butt off all summer for that.

SUP mag: Tell us about the mainland trips.
Trout: There's actually a little river opportunity coming up in the beginning of July. I'll be going out with the Infinity crew and SUP the mag and we're going to be doing a week-long river trip, surfing standing waves. It'll be cool to get out of my element a little bit- I really enjoy the river stuff.
I'm going to Florida at the end of the summer, in August and September. My brother goes to college down there and we have a bunch of family and property down there and so we're going to stay there for a while and train. I'm gonna try to sweat it off a little bit and get in the heat and train and get ready for the Battle of the Paddle.

SUP mag: Any plans on competing in the World Series this year?
Trout: Yeah, I'm really excited about the World Series this year because I think it's more organized, it's bigger and there are more events. It's good to see it growing and I'm going to do my four stops coming up. Of my four events, two are on the mainland. After that, hopefully I'm going to qualify for the World Championships in Hawaii, at Turtle Bay, and then I’ll do my best to win it.

Photo: Matt Kerstein

Photo: Matt Kerstein

SUP mag: And we have to ask, what’s up with the GF? Alec Baldwin's daughter, Ireland?
Trout: Yeah, everything's awesome and I'm really blessed to have Ireland. She's a really big supporter of me. She came to my first race this year, the Surftech Shootout, and it was so cool to have her there when I won. But yeah, she really understands what paddling means to me and makes sure I'm training and eating right. I can't say enough about her.

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