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boom time:

amazing autumn swell bonanza!



insane new brit slab tamed

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the next generation of pro’s

How to choose the perfect gun ISSUE 112

10 future stars Insane moves from


momentous decade for surfing


10 incredible years Why the Noughties were a

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departments// 1418 Takeoff Incoming

20 Planet Surf 26 Bulletin

28 Foam 102 boards

106 Final Score 110 Essentials

113 Sessions 117 Out There

120 And Finally.

features// FOCUS




Irish charger Hugh Galloway is the subject of this month’s photo profile from Mickey Smith. Hugo, as the lads call him, is quiet sort of fella who loves hollow waves, having a beer and just generally living for the moment. Sounds like a winning formula!

When it comes to driving a jetski, sounds like Egor Harris, Mitch Corbett and Matt Capel should perhaps change their names to Wild Bill Hickok, Billy the Kid and Hopalong Cassidy. But while they may lack a bit of finesse at the controls of a Kawasaki Ultra 250X, you can’t deny that the boys have got what it takes to charge a double-overhead heaving slab.

On the cover: Matt Capel on a bomb at Number 10. Photo: Will Bailey. This page: Scenic enough for ya? Aileen’s. Photo: Mickey Smith.







Ten years ago nobody surfed Bagpipes, Aileen’s, Riley’s, Lauren’s, G-Spot or Number 10. Nobody used Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, WindGuru or Magic Seaweed. Nobody tow surfed over here. Nobody dreamt of going on a surf trip to Norway, Canada or Iceland. And nobody seriously thought that an artificial reef would actually get built in the UK. How times have changed. We asked 10 British and Irish surfers how surfing changed for them in the Noughties.

The Teenies (if that’s really what we’re calling it) is just as rubbish a name for a decade as the Noughties. But that aside, 2010 onwards is going to see some ballistic surfing from a small army of young, crazy, freakishly-talented international rippers. Some you already know, some you don’t. Here’s 10 we reckon will be blowing up in the years to come.

Like a typical 5 November fireworks display, the autumn season got off to a damp spluttering start...and then suddenly exploded into life. October and November saw every one of our coasts pounded by swells, and if you didn’t manage to score some decent sessions, well, you must have either been very, very lucky (dating Megan Fox) or very, very unlucky (combine harvester accident).

carve surfing magazine 9


Photos: Alex Laure



mickey smith

Looking back, going forward I

keep a copy of every issue of the mag we’ve ever published in a set of files on

old) was shown hurtling along a double-overhead wave at a North Cornwall point. Back

the worktop in my bunker here at CARVE HQ. No particular reason, it’s just handy

then I’m sure both groms had starry-eyed hopes of becoming top surfers one day...but

having them all here to refer back to every now and then. It’s lucky the worktop

would they really have believed that 10 years on they’d be competing against reigning

goes halfway around the room – the 78 editions we’ve put together this decade

world champions Bonga Perkins and Kelly Slater at world tour events? (And winning, in

alone fill 14 files and occupy four feet of desk space.

Skindog’s case.)

And what a decade it’s been for this phenomenal sport / lifestyle / religion / addiction

In the years that followed our turn-of-the-century teenagers all took different paths.

we call surfing. Gordon frickin’ Bennett! Where do you start? Mad sessions at new British

Some (like Stokesy and Skindog) became full-time pro’s, some (like Nate and Egor) went

and Irish discoveries like Bagpipes, Aileen’s, Riley’s, Lauren’s, G-Spot and Number 10...

the free-surf photo hound route, some (like Al, Cotty and James Hick) developed huge

mad sessions at foreign breaks like Shipstern’s, Teahupoo, Dungeons, Ours, Satellite

nads and went charging 20-footers, and some (like Alex and Pete Chisholm) swapped the

Right, Belharra and the Superbank...shaping machines, jetskis, heated wetsuits...Google,

beach for the stage. The others? Well, most ended up following that well-trodden surfer

MySpace, Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Surfline, Magic Seaweed...the Dream Tour, the

career path: part-time lifeguard with a slight alcohol dependency!

WLT, the UK Pro Surf Tour...epoxy boards, enviro boards, Chinese boards...Norway,

Okay, so we know where we’re at and we know how we got here. But what of the

Iceland and Canada becoming surfing’s new frontier territory...Flowriders on cruise ships,

future? What lies ahead for surfing in the next 10 years? Well, for starters, I reckon there

wavepools all over the place, an artificial reef in the UK...holy shit, don’t tell me there’s

are still more sick unridden waves waiting to be discovered around the coastlines of

been as much going on in frickin’ tennis or golf as there has been in surfing these last 10

Britain and Ireland. Anyone who thinks otherwise should turn to page 36 right now and

years, ‘cos I’d just fall over laughing.

gawp at the first photos of new British super slab, Number 10. Is that one crazy Mother

To remind myself how things were at the start of the decade I had to go right back

Hubbard of a wave or what? When Will Bailey sent in the photos he scored up there with

through the back issues to CARVE #34 (Dec 1999 / Jan 2000). Our cover star that edition

Mitch, Matt and Egor, I said I couldn’t believe how lucky they’d been to get dead calm

was Spencer Hargraves, nicely slotted in a turquoise barrel at Rocky Point. Inside the

ultra-glassy conditions like that. “Nah, it was nothing to do with the wind,” replied Will, “it

mag were stories about Occy nailing the ‘99 World Title, Russ Winter qualifying for the CT,

just looks glassy like that ‘cos the wave dredges off the reef so hard!”

and a certain 19-year-old called Joel Parkinson winning the World Junior Title and being tipped as a possible future world champ. One of the main articles in that issue was a feature about the top British and Irish surfers aged 20 and under at the time. Flicking through the pages I was impressed by

No question about it, our coast has more, much more, to offer. With photographers striving to get ever crazier shots of heaving waves, and surfers frothing to ride them, you can bet there’ll be yet more jaw-dropping discoveries in the years to come. As for the international scene, well, we know either Mick or Parko will be 2009 World

the blistering moves our top teens were busting back in ‘99. And with hindsight I think

Champ, but who else will be grabbing the headlines and nailing the covershots in the next

we did a pretty decent job of predicting the youngsters who would go on to shine in the

10 years? Check the article on page 68 for a glimpse of the kind of insanity we’re going to

Noughties – among them Stokesy, Egor, Nate Phillips, Reubyn and Joss Ash, Al Mennie,

be seeing from 2010 onwards, courtesy of the next generation of superstar pro’s.

Cotty, Johnny Fryer, Ben Skinner, Skippy Skilton, Lloyd Cole, Dan Harris, Russ and Richie

Yeah, on all sorts of levels the Noughties was a mind-scrambling rollercoaster ride for

Mullins, Andrew Griffin and James Hick. Skindog (a scrawny 14-year-old with a crewcut at

surfing. I can’t even begin to imagine the kind of mad shit that’ll go down in the coming

the time) was pictured stalling for a barrel at Kirra, while Reubyn (a miniscule 11-year-

decade. But I can’t wait to find out.

– Chris Power, editor

adam paul kirby, spot B, cornwall

photo: nick wapshott/360





editor Chris Power associate Editor Steve England Production Manager Louise Searle Operations Director Mike Searle Sub-editor Kat Dawes Editorial Assistant Rob Barber Graphic Design David Alcock, Mike Searle senior Photographers Alex Williams, Mickey Smith, Stuart Norton, Will Bailey. Photographers Estpix, Chris Power, Mike Searle, Simon Williams, Tim Jones, Gary

Knights, Joli, Pete Frieden, Nick Wapshott, Paul Gill, Lucia Griggi, Tony Plant, Jason Feast, Alan Van Gysen, Tungsten, Farscapes, Ben Jones, Alex Young, Moonwalker, Bastien Bonnarme. Contributing Writers Ester Spears, Ben Mondy, Will Bailey, Alex Hapgood.

Advertising Advertising Manager Steve England

surf videos

upload your photos surf news

competitions surf forecast

hardware plus loads more SURFING MAGAZINE

Tel: 01637 878074 Call or e-mail for advertising rates or a copy of our media pack. Subscriptions/Merchandise Subscriptions and Merchandise Manager Jane Chambers

Tel: 01637 878074 Subscriptions are £29.99 for one year (nine issues), or £52.99 for two years (18 issues), see Subscribe Page at the back of the mag. Back issues of most editions are available, see the Orcashop ad at the back of the mag. Moving? Please write or e-mail giving both your old and new address, indicating that it’s a subscription to CARVE; allow three weeks’ notice. Orca Publications

CARVE is published by: Orca Publications Ltd, Berry Road Studios, Berry Road, Newquay, TR7 1AT, England. • Tel: 01637 878074 • Fax: 01637 850226 • e-mail: Sorry, due to the volume of enquiries we cannot respond to all e-mails. If you want info about where to surf or what equipment to buy, check our website. If you want info about other destinations, check the books advertised in the Orcashop ad at the back of the mag. Repro, printing and distribution Printing: Garnett Dickinson, Rotherham. Distribution: Seymour Distribution Ltd, 86 Newman Street, London W1P 7HJ (Tel: 0207 396 8000 • Fax: 0207 396 8002) CARVE is printed on elemental chlorine-free paper produced from sustainable forests

Contributions CARVE welcomes high-quality story and photo contributions. Send contributions to the editor at the Orca Publications address above, and include an SAE. We are not responsible for unsolicited contributions (stuff we haven’t asked for). Unsolicited contributions sent without an SAE will not be returned. Please do not send us colour prints as we cannot use them; we only accept digital images submitted to our specifications, transparencies (slides) and black-and-white prints. Contributor’s Guidelines for professional photographers available – send request on your headed paper with tearsheets of published work.

Copyright© 2009 Orca Publications Ltd. All material in CARVE is copyright. Reproduction (including by electronic means, such as commercial websites) without the permission of the publishers in writing will result in prosecution. While every care is taken in compiling CARVE, the publishers assume no responsibility for any affect arising from omissions or errors. Views expressed by individuals herein may not reflect those of the publishers. CARVE is a registered trademark of Orca Publications Ltd.


It’s your mag, so have your say!

– send us your pics or write to us at

lucia griggi


check out alan stokes taking the animal pro at

From: Johnny G, London Subject: Is British surfing losing out? I don’t know about your other readers but I’ve been feeling a bit down about the state of British surfing recently. Not with our surfers (who seem to be absolutely bloody ripping these days), but the organisation and funding of the sport, as well as its image (or lack of it) in the mainstream media. For instance, I just don’t understand why some 14-year-old kid who looks like he’s been dipped in creosote gets so much coverage (and probably so much cash for training) for doing a few somersaults and diving into a swimming pool. “Gosh, he didn’t even make a splash! Let’s put him on the front page of all the papers!” Meanwhile, Sport England won’t give the BSA the money to send our top guys to surfing’s World Games so they can represent their country. Um, excuse me, Sport England: which sport has the most participants

The Wall of Shame

sarah bunt

With lots of swell and frothing surfers this autumn there were bound to be a few misdemeanours around the country. And in the digital age no crime goes unpunished. So here for you viewing pleasure is our wall of shame. Feel free to send in your offerings! Email: wallofshame@carvemag. com

across the country, high diving or surfing? Likewise, while France is going to get an ultra-flash museum and exhibition centre dedicated to surf culture costing £75 million, Britain’s 50 years of proud surfing history is apparently going to be housed in something that looks like a cattle shed on an industrial estate! It doesn’t exactly make my chest puff up with pride. Come on, St Austell got £55 million from the Government/Lottery Commission for the Eden Project, and Falmouth got £22 million for the Maritime Museum. Even if the surf museum got a tenth of that funding it could afford a cool building in a better location. Another thing which I think surfing organisations like the BSA and UKPST should definitely improve is the coverage of their events. These days everyone wants to see the big events streamed live on the internet, yet I’ve only ever heard about one or two Brit events being covered online. Even the Boardmasters, an absolutely massive event, didn’t have a webcast this year. I’ve got no idea how much these things cost, but surely you wouldn’t have to pay too much for a couple of media students to stand on the beach with camcorders. If us landlocked surf fans can’t watch Brit events without driving 200 miles, how can British surfing ever hope to attract a wider audience? If it did, maybe the mainstream media would start taking surfing a bit more seriously. Sorry to sound like a grumbling old git, I just wanted to get those things off my chest. Nice ideas, Johnny. But seeing as we plunged headlong into a recession last year, there aren’t too many spare millions kicking around at the moment. Even if there were, the politicians would just nick them for their expenses! – CP

Not The North Shore News

Ian Walsh presents the North Shore News, an irreverent look at what’s going down behind the scenes in Hawaii. It’s put out every Monday in association with Red Bull, so if you want to imagine you’re part of the winter circus in Hawaii, take a look. www.redbullsurfing. com/northshorenews

josh ward burns the ASS. ED.

From: Nick Heath, Burleigh Heads, Australia Subject: Swilly portfolio Great to see you guys doin’ an article on Swilly [Simon Williams portfolio, Issue 109 –ed.] he’s a great photog and a classic guy. He’s an ex-pat like me, and he really deserves some recognition for all the amazing photography he’s done. I also heard you ran a shot of Burleigh boy Billy Watson out at that crazy new spot they found up the coast. Go Billy! He’s the ultimate waterman! Well, the Indo season is well and truly over and the summer season is almost upon us down here in beautiful Burleigh Heads. I was over in Indo for a few weeks as usual. It wasn’t a bad season, but not classic either. Desert Point had 120 guys out one day! But it was still worth the trip despite all the hassling. A four-foot groundhog day at Uluwatu or

18 carve surfing magazine

Bingin is still better than a really good day at most others spots around the world. The downside for me has been Wolves’ performance in the Premier League, especially that dismal performance against Pompy. Nothing short of a miracle will keep us up, and this is coming from as staunch a Wolves supporter you’ll find anywhere! All that money spent on bench-warmers when we could have picked up some real bargains. It really frustrates a lot of the Black and Gold Army, but the gaffer is in charge. No doubt there’ll be calls for his head in the coming weeks if we keep playing that badly! Hope you guys are rugging up for the winter. Me, I’m getting ready to put the boardies on! From: Alex Jones, Swansea Subject: SUP ban There was an interesting letter in your last mag from Simon Jayham, proposing a ban on the use of SUPs at Caswell Bay, Swansea. So I was a bit surprised when I saw a photo of Simon on a SUP at Caswell on the Visit Gower website ( html). Come on Simon, you flood the water with clueless idiots and nobody complains!

online extras playboy Ever wanted a towel that tells you where to put your face and where to put your arse? No, us neither. The Playboy cover

towel is cool, the rest of them are just kinda weird – the one that’s supposed to look like blood just looks like you’re using your raggedy old towel from school swimming lessons. inspiration/2009/10/24/10creative-beach-towels/

Legal high

Legal & General have made an online surfing game which is actually all right. It’s something to do with financial stocks and shares and all that. We couldn’t be bothered to read any more about it, but the game is a bit of a laugh. dynamicbondchallenge/index. html?id=dbt_mpu

Ripping the Piss

Please, please – go to YouTube and type ‘Ripping the pit, we’ve got it all’ into the search box. ’80s bodyboarding and singing at its very, very finest. Dick-draggers, if you ever wondered why you struggle so hard to shake off the uncool image – this must have kept you back a good few years. carvemagazine

Wavepool gems

Two pools. One funny and the other fun. user/carvemagazine

A ProvocAtive new FeAtUre-LenGth DocUmentAry



tom Lowe

XAvier De Le rUe

FerGAL smith


mickey smith

‘DiviDeD by their Art. UniteD by their Artistry’ MUSiC BY





Watch it at

planet surf/20

fergal smith

aileen’s, ireland “I’ve never looked down a bigger wave in my life,” says Fergal Smith, recounting the moment he took off on this warehouse-sized chunk of ocean at Aileen’s in October. “I just stood there and held on for dear life. The adrenaline rush was huge, ‘cos the consequences if I’d fallen were pretty unthinkable. I might not have come up for a minute, or got a board in the head. If something goes wrong out there the things that could happen are really serious.” Ferg was towed in by good friend Anthony Walsh from Australia, who was visiting Ireland for a few weeks. Tow men Al Mennie, Andrew Cotton and Shane O’Connor also caught some mackers that session (more photos on page 85). “The funny thing was we didn’t think it was going to be that big,” continues Ferg. “We thought it was going to get bigger later, with the push of the tide. So I got my strapless boards out, ready for a session at Lauren’s, and I only grabbed my tow board at the last minute. When we got out there it was like, ‘Holy shit! It’s massive!’”

mickey smith

planet surf/22 Anthony Walsh

Nias, Indonesia Aussie surfer/photographer Anthony Walsh has been experimenting with all manner of camera rigs in the last few months in a quest to capture fresh new images from inside the green room. But getting these kind of shots ain’t exactly easy. “The first time I used this set-up was at Nias, and I went over the falls a bunch of times ‘cos the board I was riding was too small, a 6’0”. Due to the weight of the rig, I didn’t have the paddling power I usually would have. Even on a bigger board there was a lot to think about – getting in the tube while your balance was being thrown off by the weight distribution of the gear, avoiding the lip...all that kinda thing.” But Walshy was stoked when his experiments paid off with this image. “I was so blown away when I saw this shot. It’s the best shot I’ve ever taken.”

Anthony Walsh

Bastien Bonnarme / Aquashot

planet surf/24

Eneko Acero

Mundaka, Spain “AARGHHHHH!” “FARK!” “NO!” “YOU LUCKY BLOODY BASTARDS!” You could almost hear the cries of anguish from 1,000 miles away when the Top 45 checked out the online photos from the all-day session that went down at Mundaka on Wednesday 21 October. Just 10 days earlier the pro’s had waited and waited and waited and prayed and begged the Atlantic to send a decent swell in the direction of northern Spain, only to be cruelly denied. No sooner had they left, the weather patterns changed, a booming swell marched down the coast and suddenly, miraculously, the legendary rivermouth was back to its legendary best. The locals wept garlic-tinged tears of joy when they realised just how perfect the waves were that morning. “It was the best session of the year, for sure!” gushed veteran Spanish ripper Eneco Acero. “We had some good days at the start of the year, but this session was the best. The sand built up in the river all summer, and when we finally got a big swell the waves were just sick. The pro’s must have been so bummed! Mundaka is my favourite spot in Spain. When it’s on, it’s such perfect wave. I just love the place!”



Ben Skinner clinches ETL title with win in Portugal

Photos: Yves Sobinski / Longboarding France


Skindog puts the pedal to the ETL at Santo Amaro.

Ben Skinner clinched the 2009 European Longboard Tour title with a resounding victory at the Estoril Surf Festival at the end of November. The win topped off a triumphant season for Skindog which also saw him scoop the British / BLU Longboard title and the European Longboard title at Eurosurf 2009 in Jersey. Estoril served up some chunky waves for the deciding event of the season. Most of the rounds were held at Santo Amaro where the reeling fourto six-foot rights were a dream come true for the more aggressive surfers. Going into the event, six guys had a shot at the 2009 title. But the two main contenders – Antoine Delperro and Rémy Arauzo – were both eliminated in Round Three. The second semi was the crunch heat of the contest. Ben was up against young French sensation Eduard Delpero – whoever won the heat would take

the title. The Brit chose his waves carefully, then worked fast to rack up the points. His footwork and committed turns earned an impressive tally of 17.25 (out of a possible 20), securing his ticket to the final and his second ETL title. “The semi-final was massive and I gave it absolutely everything,” said Skindog afterwards. “That score was my biggest in the whole event.” With the pressure off, Ben faced another Frenchman, Alexis Deniel, in the 30-minute final. Despite being tired from all the paddling, both surfers ripped some powerful moves. In the end Ben edged past his opponent by 14.6 to 13.93 points, and claimed his third victory at Estoril in as many years. “I’m over the moon,” frothed the new champion, “I knew before coming here it would be pretty tight for the title, but this wave really suits my surfing and my boards worked unreal! it’s been such a good season for me…I couldn’t have asked for more! –ETL / CP


Al and Cotty surf three big-wave spots in ten days!

al takes on nelscott.

26 carve surfing magazine

Big-wave duo Al Mennie and Andrew Cotton set a new record for ozone depletion in October, going on an 9,000-mile swell chase that began at Aileen’s in Ireland. Cotty takes up the story... “We scored an huge unexpected swell at Aileen’s, then drove for 14 hours to the airport to catch a plane to the US, downing energy drinks to try to stay awake. We flew to Oregon where we took part in the Nelscott Reef tow comp. It was sick, the waves were pumping. Nelscott is the most fun big-wave spot imaginable and the conditions were good all day – no wind, a solid swell cotty, aileens. and even a bit of the sunshine in the morning. We were only there for long enough to compete in our heats, go to the prize-giving, and have a couple of beers in the Elks Club (as surreal a place as its name suggests!). Then we hit the road again. News had filtered through that another huge swell was about to hit Ireland, so we headed for the airport and made our travel arrangements right there on the spot. We got back to Ireland and headed straight for Aileen’s.” Which was was where their luck ran out. “It was shit!” Cotty said it was pretty exciting to be jetting around like a Top 45 pro, but the travelling got to him in the end. “I’d have to admit I got weary of the constant travelling. But we got some solid waves and if it wasn’t for the damn airport shenanigans the trip would have been up there as one of my best ever. We travelled over 9,000 miles in seven days and got three days of surfing!” –SE


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foam/28 Luke Dillon

Newquay shredder Luke Dillon has been popping up in the CARVE photographers’ crosshairs

more often than almost anyone else in the last month. The latest batch of shots have seen him blowing the back out of a few French beachbreaks and punting some sick grabs. The boy is on fire. We know that he’s shredding at the moment but what came first?

First appearance: Treliske Hospital, Cornwall (but I’m really a Newquay boy through and through). Born on 26/12/94 weighing in at seven pounds and seven ounces. First started surfing: Aged eight, surfed at Tolcarne and Fistral, hooked! First contest entered: Quiksilver King Of The Groms under 10s at Fistral. Surfed in the final with Oliver Smith, Mikey Sutton and Ben Jackson. Won the event in clean three-foot surf. Got Sponsored by Quiksilver

will bailey


and Spencer and have been with them ever since. First surf trip: Went to the KOTGs World Final Under 16s In Hossegor, France. I was 9 years old. I got through the trials first round then went out to Nathan Curren in next round. Got to free surf with Jon-Jon Florence, was so stoked. The waves were huge the first day at VVF then the second day the contest was moved to Santosha where it was three-foot and sick. First surfing memory: Standing up on my first board at Tolcarne with friends and got hooked straight away. Loved the sense of freedom. First surfboard: My first board was a Mac 5´10˝. It was white and pale blue, my dad got it for me, (cheap)! First love: The girl i saw topless at a mate’s house party (you know who you are, girl). First things to rescue if the house were on fire: My phone and Xbox 360 (can’t live without it)!

Sophie Hell-Yeah

Sophie Hellyer recently won the Top Sports

Model Award; Rob Barber asked her a few questions about it. Congratulations Soph! So, how many of the other entries in the comp had used Photoshop on their pics do you reckon? How ’bout I answer your question with another question: how many abo-digitals do you see modelling? For the photoshoot that you’ve won, have you got any Blue Steel-style poses prepared? If so, what are they called and can you describe them? Yes, other than the usual cheesy grin we obviously have Blue Steel, Ferrari, Le Tigra and Magma. Sorry to hear that you split with your boyfriend recently, how stoked do you reckon he was to hear that you’ve won?! Nice, jump straight in there, sore subject! No, actually I spoke to Reubs [Ash] today and he said he was really happy for me which was nice. As this is effectively an after-beauty-contest interview, can you comment on how this win is going to help you change the world to make it a more beautiful place? (Miss World Stylee)? I want to make a centre for children who can’t read good and wanna learn to do other stuff good too, where we teach you that there’s more to life than being really, really good-looking. I also want to make Page 3 style quotes in every interview like, “Sophie says, to think that £20 billion of taxpayers’ money can be squandered on red tape is horrifying. Our schools and hospitals desperately need that money, not a bunch of bureaucrats. It’s got to be tightened up to make sure our taxes reach front-line services. She also enjoys pillow-fighting in her pyjamas.” We know what a legend you are, but there may be some dudes out there who pigeon-hole you as a typical blonde. So to show you’ve got brains as well, can you explain the offside rule please? Obviously, as left-winger for Bideford Ladies FC this is not a hard question, but it would be easier to draw a picture… So, you can be in an offside position without actually being ’offside’. There have to be two players from the opposing team between you and their goal when the player on your team plays the ball. If you actively participate and there are less than two you are offside. But only if the ref blows his whistle!

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The UKPST banquet and awards rounded off the contest year down at the Fistral Blu and Beach Bar. Lucia Griggi was on hand with her glamorous assistants to papp the guests before they started playing up…

photos: lucia griggi

Roger Mansfield and Les Clinton, The Animals throw some steel, Lewis Clinton, Johnny Fryer and Vicky Walker, UKPST ’head’ judge Ester Spears and snapper Jason Feast. second row Rip Curl’s Jodi Watson and friends, Harry De Roth and Jayce Robinson, Katherine Baker, Gemma Harris, Zoey Cotton, Nicole Kennedy nee Morgan. top row


third row Sarah

Beardmore and Candice O’Donnell, Tom Butler and Georgie Holland, Lyndon Wake and Corinne Evans, Gwen Spurlock, Jo Dennison and Dean Gough, Stokesy and Celine Gehret. bottom row Snappers Sharpy and Greg Martin, The Butlers, UKPST legends Jon Owen Snr. and Dave Reed, Reubin and Marcie Pearce.

Well, Movember came and went, raising awareness and money for prostate cancer, and not without incident. Out of the closet came a rather camp Lee Bartlett, looking very much like the leather man out of Frankie Goes To Hollywood. Nate Phillips went the YMCA route, and you may have seen Mark Vaughan in Police Stop Camera recently.

Re(ar)-entry When we heard of a shot floating around that contained a well-known Newquay surfer, a latex rubber glove and a Brazilian chick’s prime rump, we had to get hold of it. This isn’t exactly what we expected… Tom Butler defended himself thus: “Just before leaving home I got a deep cut on my hand from my glassed-in Stanley-knife of a fin. I got it stitched and glued and rolled the rubber on for some added protection!”

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CARVE Awards

Who charged hardest, grovelled best, drank most, got dropped off at a service station mindlessly drunk dressed as a chicken. Yes, it’s the return of the CARVE Awards, celebrating British surfing talent, achievements and depravity…only this time it’s online!



1 Clawing my way to the channel through a Riley’s screamer. That’s Ferg’s board by the way.


Live for the moment

p h o t o g r a p h ic

Photos by mickey smith •

p r o f il e

o f

H u gh


words by Fergal Smith • Captions by Hugh

Hugh Galloway (Hugo or Huge to his mates) hails from southeast Ireland but currently resides in Galway, within easy striking distance of the West Coast’s prime reefs. One of a new crew of committed young Irish chargers, he’ll be one to watch in the coming decade. I met Hugo way back at my first ever contest in Easkey. We were pretty much kids, and straightaway we got on real well. The two of us both had the disadvantage of living a fair way from the waves, although Hugo had it a lot worse. The nearest coast to his home in Co Waterford was down in the southeast, where the geology ain’t the best. So, whenever he could Hugo would come and stay with us on the West Coast. It was great growing up surfing with someone who was always keener then me. Whether the waves were one foot shit or big and heavy, he was always up for it. I love that attitude. Hugo is a three- to six-foot heavy slab pro; that’s where he shines. He loves paddling into heaving waves at shallow slabs and taking heavy late drops. He’s a quiet, respectful guy, and his attitude really suits surfing those kind of waves. You won’t ever hear him talking it up, claiming all sorts of ‘sick barrels’ in the pub, he always plays down anything he does. He doesn’t get paid to surf and he isn’t hunting any fame and glory either. He simply loves doing it on his own terms, which is quite a rare thing these days.  Back in the day we both did all the Irish comps and travelled with the Irish team a good few times. Comps were never Hugo’s thing though – he would always throw down the best turn of the contest after his heat had finished, or in a free surf next to the contest area. That’s classic Huge. After school we both went to Australia to train, which was a really good experience. When we got back, Hugo moved up to Sligo for the winter and rented a place with my brother; I spent a lot of time there as well. We went wave for wave throughout that whole winter. We pushed each other every day, surfing all sorts of little slabs and fun waves. It was top having a mate right there who was up for it every swell. After being in school for so long we were finally surfing sick waves every day. We were living the dream! There was no difference in ability between the two of us when the waves were heavy, but Hugo did have a bit of a knack for snapping boards. I remember going on a trip to France with him when we were about 17. We were both so keen on surfing and improving. Hugo spent all the money he’d saved on two brand new 5’11”s. Almost as soon as we got there he paddled out and creased his board real bad. Unlucky. So he grabbed the other one, paddled out and did the same to board number two! It was heartbreaking for Hugo but kind of funny too. Around that time I tried my hardest to convince him to slum it for another couple of years so we could keep pushing ourselves and living the dream. But he got wise and decided to head off to college in Galway to do a degree in environmental science. Galway has been his base ever since. Hugo is a ‘live for the moment’ kind of person, he loves having fun and not taking things too seriously. So college and the bright city lights are the perfect place for him to be. Galway also a pretty central spot for either hitting the waves

carve surfing magazine 33


2 If someone gave me a tenner every time I went over the falls out there, I'd be loaded!

up north or heading down to Clare, a road he’s run more than a few times. When the waves are crap, you might not see or hear from Hugo for a whole month. But if things are looking good the next day, real late that night he’ll fire across a one-line text asking what the plan is for tomorrow.  I think riding slabs is where he finds the most enjoyment these days. To put it simply he just wants to get barrelled, and he’ll do whatever he can to get himself in the pit. Recently, on certain days, rather than risking snapping more boards he’s even started bodyboarding. Sometimes surfboards aren’t best suited to heavy shallow slabs. So me and Huge have been having full bodyboard comp sessions. It’s been pretty hilarious fun scooping into barrels pretty much every wave, trying to outdo each other.  I don’t see too much changing for Hugo in the immediate future; he’ll still be trying to fit his college work around non-curricular activities, namely partying and being on the heaviest days every good swell. You can guarantee Hugo will always be there, consistently going harder than everyone else and quietly loving it as much as he always has done. Go the Huge!




3 After going over the falls and dodging sets for hours, the boys called me into this one. I was bracing myself for another beating when I probably should have claimed it instead, ha! 4 This is a funny shot from a while back. I'm wearing Ferg’s old wetsuit and riding [Dave] Blount’s old board, which he sold to me for 10 Euro with three creases in her. Still, they did the job. Cheers boys! 5 Chillin’ with me jetski instructor. For the first few sessions Ferg would just tell me to drive, and occasionally shout orders at me from the end of the rope. Must have been pretty scary for him, I was all over the place!

Matt Capel on one seriously beautiful wave.

Matt Capel, Mitch Corbett and Mark Harris score the best waves of their lives ‘somewhere in the British Isles’.

story and photos by Will Bailey


t 5am, far too excited to sleep, I gave fellow lensman Ben ‘Swift’ Mir a kick to get him moving. We

drove to the slab we had come for, and rocked up to see perfect conditions, with lines stretching all the way to the horizon. Mitch Corbett, Mark ‘Egor’ Harris and Matt Capel arrived all jammed into the front of Egor’s van, so excited they looked like three squirrels chasing nuts in a bag. They took one look at the swell and hammered off to get the ski launched. The boys had already surfed it three times that week, towing it twice and paddling in once, so they had an idea of what to expect. I swam out with my water housing and watched a few from the channel. The first wave detonated onto the reef with raw Atlantic power. It started off looking like a three-foot lump, but grew rapidly as the water began draining off the reef. Within seconds it morphed into a six-foot thick-lipped monster that unloaded onto dry reef, spitting harder than any wave I’d ever seen. I had butterflies just watching it! You could barely even call it a wave – most of them were closing out as the sets began to approach eight feet. The ski came blaring down the coast, the boys perched on it like three meercats, eyes wide. I wanted to tell them “It’s dry, you idiots! There’s no exit!” but then another wave approached, surging and heaving from a head-high wall into a near triple-overhead bomb, freight-training across the reef and covering us all in a cloud of spray. This time it didn’t close out. I turned around to see the three of them doing rock-paper-scissors, a look of awe and excitement on their faces. Neither love nor money would stop this session from happening now! Mitch whipped into a medium-sized one to scope it out, basically looking at how dry it was. The spit nearly knocked him off, but he got out safely, so it was game on.

His next wave was massive, no messing. He faded from behind the peak and then stood tall until it closed out, looking as relaxed as he’d have been surfing a chest-high beachbreak. I was looking right into the pit and it looked like his arms and legs had been ripped off. He came up looking wired, but in one piece, and threw a thumbs up. Matt screamed with excitement and grabbed the rope. Ben gave a shout from the cliff so we all knew a set was approaching and Egor revved up the ski. When you’re shooting close-up photos of big, heavy waves like these it’s really hard to judge just how big and close to you it is. As Matt got into the wave I remember thinking, “He’s not gonna get down this one.” There was so much water getting pulled up the wave it looked like he was going backwards. He stuck with it and finally got down into the belly. This thing looked like it could have killed him – the lip was as thick as he is tall, and it was basically landing on dry rock. The wave closed out with him inside. He popped up, all smiles but only with half a board, then ran across the ledge and dived off the end

Mark Harris tucking into grand slab central.

sea cow “ Mitch whipped into a mediumsized one to scope it out, basically looking at how dry it was. The spit nearly knocked him off, but he got out safely, so it was game on. ”

Mitch – happy.

It’s a lot bigger and shallower than it looks.

How square and glassy is this wave? Mitch, looking for the dry inside ledge and a safe exit.

Matt Capel, eyes wide open through the inside section.

“ It was really impressive to see the boys throwing themselves into them... ”

before taking one on the head in the impact zone. Now it was Egor’s turn. Mitch, who was still getting used to driving the ski, pulled him into about five waves in a row before he got a ‘keeper’. The first four were hideous closeouts, but the last one was absolutely sick. Egor threaded it perfectly and came out; it looked bonkers. It was really impressive to see the boys throwing themselves into the mental waves, giving it everything they had. They were way more confident than I expected them to be, and fully charged, all credit to them! You hear a lot of talk about surfers using skis to get into waves. Stuff like: “Pussies! Why aren’t they paddling?” is normally spouted while people are watching or looking at photos. Or, “They don’t know how to use a ski, they haven’t got a clue what they’re doing!” There was at least some truth in the latter statement. Egor had used a ski before while lifeguarding, but I don’t think he’d towed much. Mitch was even more of a liability, and Matt was actually banned from driving it! He seemed a bit sensitive about this but the rest of us thought it was hilarious. Egor had no problem pulling the other two into waves but Mitch was clearly struggling. On one occasion Ben screamed down from the cliff, “GO!” and Mitch took off at full throttle out into the bay, turned around and then gunned it back towards the approaching wave. Saying his method looked out of control would be a huge understatement! He’d fly straight at the wave, way behind the peak, and just manage to sneak over the top of the beast while somehow depositing Egor relatively unharmed in its jaws. It worked perfectly a few times, but went a bit wrong on one occasion when he decided to accelerate and outrun a wave to save going over the falls with the ski. Matt was the unfortunate victim of this suden change of plan – holding the rope while doing 40-mph towards a wave twice his size, he ended up 15 feet in the air! It was possibly the funniest thing I’ve ever seen.

Egor checks it on the paddle day. Mitch mistakes the board-rack for a bed.

carve surfing magazine 43

Egor styling on the paddle day.

Apart from Mitch’s driving skills our method seemed foolproof. Ben stood up on the cliff with the video camera calling the sets. He had it wired and would scream down to tell us which wave looked the best. Problem was, he was losing his voice due to all the shouting and the sheer excitement. Despite our strategic success so far, I was beginning to worry that someone was going to get seriously hurt. The boys were only making one wave in five and clearly competing to get the biggest and deepest barrel out there. They seemed fully aware of the dangers involved, and they were all getting the best rides and most intense adrenaline rushes of their lives. The session lasted a few hours, with some unbelievable rides and some equally heavy beatings – Matt actually bounced off the reef on his

46 carve surfing magazine

head, but thankfully came up only slightly dazed. Amazingly this was the worst injury sustained. Within a few hours there was already talk of the session all over the internet. People were genuinely blown away by the wave, the photos, and the boys’ commitment. Others spouted rubbish about us hyping things up, how it had been surfed before, that the boys were pussies for towing into it and trying to claim it as ours. I found the criticism hard to stomach, miffed that anyone could be knocking the boys for their effort. They had done something really impressive – they gave a wave that looked unsurfable a crack when it was big and nasty. Claiming rights are always a contentious issue; the whole we-surfed-it-first thing

above: Might help if someone took the handbrake off. left: Mitch was having a keg-fest.

can get bitter, and perhaps that’s why criticism rained in from a few? Unquestionably Egor, Matty and Mitch had blown away any other sessions that had taken place at Number 10, and for that alone they surely deserve the credit. In truth a lot of people knew about the wave, and a number of us had been checking it for a while, so we knew it had potential. You can keep checking a wave for years, and then when someone actually gives it a go some folk can be left feeling vexed. To surf it at that size you need a ski and a drive to pull into massive dry pits with little regard for your own safety. Matt, Mitch and Egor love stuff like that – they’re all a bit unhinged and that’s what was needed. I spoke to a few of the locals, all of whom said that it had never been surfed before – one sponger had had a crack at it but came

in after one wave. George Watt told me, “No-one has surfed that wave; a lot of people know about it, but no-one thought it was surfable.” We tried surfing it again over the next two days but the swell was a bit small. We knew that there was another pulse coming so we hung out, surfed a few other spots and took it easy. On the last day the swell looked a lot bigger. We had a bit of time to waste as the correct tide was later in the day and the slab was as dry as Mitch’s bank account. We hung around drinking tea and chatting until inevitably the first decent set graced us with its presence. We all got a little excited but also a little nervous as the end section was pinching. Once again I swam out, and before long the cowboys came riding into the bay,

carve surfing magazine 47

just as a barmy-looking set approached. Another very tense game of rock-paperscissors went down as the lads decided who would be the first on the rope. Mitch won (as usual) and was slung perfectly into the guts of a beauty. Egor offered Matt the rope straight afterwards and whipped him into another cracker. It got bigger and better from then on. The boys now had a few decent sessions under their belt, and the confidence was there with the ski. Egor had it wired, and Mitch was getting Egor into them a lot better now. Egor had some bombs, pulling into the

“ The boys were only making one wave in five and clearly competing to get the biggest and deepest barrel out there. ”

above and inset: Matty kegged…and feeling the pain after encountering the local geology. right: Ice, ice baby.

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depths of oblivion and coming out with the spit. Matt was getting spat out of eight-foot drainers speechless, which is unusual, and he came out of one looking downright ill. Then Mitch was blessed with the wave of the day, and stood there looking as casual as Marvin Gaye in a Motown bar. I could have shot there all day – watching the boys close-up getting the pits of their lives was amazing. The light was the only let down – it was getting dark as the tide reached its optimum height, but the boys had had their fill. We couldn’t believe what we had just been part of and what had gone down. The obvious call was to get straight to the pub for a calming drink and look at the shots, but the boys needed to make the final UKPST contest starting in Cornwall the day after next. Ben and I had a slightly less demanding travel schedule, and, too wound up to drive, we pulled into a hostery to sample the local hospitality, swill a few, and reflect on the last few crazy days.

s c



team rider : Sam Boex

mickey smith; courtesy o’neill

alex williams; courtesy the sea

moonwalker; will bailey; mike searle

mike searle; mickey smith; mickey smith

The Wonder Years { { The Noughties was a momentous decade for surfing, in all sorts of ways. We rounded up ten British and Irish guys who’ve been at the forefront of surfing in different fields and asked them about their memories and experiences of the last 10 years.


Ah, yes, that was the year of incredible acid, long hair, month-long sexual feasts, Woodstock and counter culture revolutions. Wasn’t it? Oh hang on...maybe not, maybe 1999 was more about Millennium bugs rather than free love. All the same, things have changed in the last ten years, and unless you’ve been living in a cave in North Devon, foraging for crabs and riding the same rather wide battered old thruster, you’ll realise surfing has moved on too. Like a middle age spread, these changes tend to happen incrementally, piling up slowly, fat cell by fat cell. The end result (although you might not realise it) is that you are in fact a lazy lardy slob, blissfully blind to a decade of change.   The first thing to say is that the years from 1999 to 2009 won’t go down as the decade that surfing undertook any once-in-a-generation transmogrification; there was no shortboard revolution, no change to the generally accepted number of fins. The internet, epoxy boards and jetskis all existed already. It was just that us surfers didn’t yet realise the incredible ways we could use them... After the champagne, the fireworks and the Millennium parties came the hangover. Britain in the year 2000 seemed just the same as it had been before, except for a bloody great dome and a funfair wheel in the capital. It didn’t help that no-one was able to coin a palatable term for the decade in the first place, which to my thinking was always a bad sign. ‘The Noughties’ was the best anyone could come up with, but we all knew that simply wasn’t good enough, and even vaguely embarrassing to say – children are naughty, and I’ve heard that if you’re particularly lucky sexual partners can be so as well, but decades just aren’t. In fact it will be a dirty great relief when we can get to the appropriately named ‘20s and all relax a bit. 

But just because it had a crap name, and in surfing terms nothing truly revolutionary took place, that doesn't mean a whole lot of shit didn’t go down, or more importantly, improve. Most of the tools we surfers take for granted now were available to surfers in 1999, the difference being that they’ve since been upgraded, developed, expanded, extended and made available to everyone. For example, while surf forecasting was around (in the US, Surfline’s Sean Collins had been doing phone-based forecasts since 1985) it was the marriage of sophisticated weather modelling and the web – the perfect medium for the ever changing info – that proved a godsend to surfers. Over the decade the weather modelling improved, as did the speed of the internet; that meant, for the first time in surfing history, we could find out to the hour exactly what was going on where. The amateur synoptic chart expert may have been pissed off, but what’s not to love about maximising your quality surf time by a massive reduction in the role played by the element of chance? And, if trends stay the same, the forecasts will only get better. They will look further ahead (up to two weeks), be more detailed, and be more accurate. In another ten years, you’ll probably be able pick your France or Canaries holiday way in advance, knowing that when a rooster farts in Brittany, a new 15.25 second swell will arrive at La Santa approximately 2.5 days later.  Which kinda leads me to the next big change that has occurred over the last 10 years – the continued advancements in tow surfing and the hard charging of waves in general. Using the new forecast knowledge, possessing testicles the size of pineapples and riding high-powered jetskis, madmen all around the world started surfing evil thick-lipped beasts that could never have been ridden before. Imagine if you’d seen Fergal Smith surfing Riley’s back in 1999. It would have blown your brain cells into even tinier pieces. The same goes with Mark Mathews and co down in Australia, the Longs in the States, and all those Chopes sessions over the years. To think, my wide-eyed surfing historians, that it was only in November 2000 that Laird Hamilton rode that wave at Chopes, thus signalling the direction where the sport was headed.  Fast forward to 2009 and Laird was again riding Chopes, this time on a stand-up paddleboard, when he was involved in a nasty accident with Brit hero Tom Lowe. I’m no SUP researcher, but I’m pretty goddamn sure they weren’t around ten years ago. Old Laird was, as per usual, at the forefront of the craze, reinventing it during his downtime between riding 50-foot Jaws and wrestling with crocodiles. These days you can’t paddle out at Fistral or Llangennith without seeing a bunch of SUPpers doing their thang, getting all Duke Kahanamoku on everyone’s asses.  Mind you, without the advancements in epoxy surfboard technology, the stand-up paddleboard might have remained a mere plaything for Laird and his mates. I mean, imagine trying to find a shaper willing to shape and glass a 12-foot behemoth, and then try to imagine the muscles you’d need to carry the thing. Yes, epoxy surfboards (and machine-shaped boards in general) have been the major technological surfboard design breakthrough of the last 10 years. At the start of the decade, epoxy boards were around but only accounted for 0.00001 percent of the global market. A few mad scientist types knew the technology was viable, but it took the closure of Clark Foam – the world’s biggest producer of blanks – in 2005 to give the epoxy revolution the kick up the arse it needed. Big name shapers came on board, the professionals embraced a different lighter type of surfboard, and mass production in Asia brought the cost down for the punters. These days, if you don’t have at least one epoxy board in your quiver, the chances are that you also listen to Deep Purple, wear flared jeans and sport a 4/3 wetsuit that weighs the equivalent of four nuclear submarines.  And speaking of wetsuits, the massive improvements in their materials and design have no doubt played a part in persuading a new breed of ice-cream headache addicted surfers to head about as far north (and south) as possible, searching for new waves in some of the coldest and remotest places as possible. Why anyone would want to travel to Norway, Antarctica, Iceland or Alaska to go surfing is beyond me, but I know it’s all the rage now. You can add a whole bunch of other stuff to the list of New Things That Took Off In The Noughties too: digital photography, Facebook and YouTube, live webcasts of contests, and crazy aerial moves with names like as rodeo flips, Passion Pops and Superman airs. Yep, over the last ten years the surfing world has moved at a pretty remarkable rate, and for the most part in a positive direction. We might not have a decent name for the decade, but I’m sure glad I was able to surf straight through the thing.  – Ben Mondy


Winter p r o

s u r f e r

The Noughties started on a high note for Britain’s most formidable contest machine when he battled his way onto the Championship Tour for the second time. He did it again in 2001 and 2002, and also notched up famous WQS victories on home turf at the Boardmasters and the Highland Open. In recent years he’s found more time for trips, and he’s charged beefy waves from Aileen’s to Teahupoo and Bagpipes to Barbados.

T h e n a n d now What we listened to in


Red Hot Chili Peppers Oasis Chemical Brothers The Prodigy Radiohead Beastie Boys Foo Fighters NoFX Manic Street Preachers Blink 182 What we listened to in


Kings of Leon Kasabian The Killers The Prodigy Arctic Monkeys Dizzee Rascal Foo Fighters Green Day MGMT Ben Howard

Where were you and what were you doing 10 years ago? Around this time of year, November and December, I would have been in Hawaii doing the contests at Haleiwa and Sunset. Every time I competed at Sunset I seemed to get one sick wave – an 8.5 or something – but never got the chance to back it up. I think that was a bit of a lack of experience. One time I made it through a few rounds and got a 17th. I never surfed Pipe, except for the times I was in the Pipe Masters. I couldn’t be arsed with the crowds. Every year I’d have my birthday at Occy’s house at Rocky Point and everyone would be there – Munga, Damian Hardman, Wayne Lynch, Ross Clarke-Jones, a good crew. We’d all get pissed, make speeches and get really emotional...start talking about dolphins and stuff! (Laughs) If you had to pick out one surfing high point of the last 10 years, what would it be? Obviously it was amazing to win the WQS in Newquay, but I think Scotland takes it because it’s more recent. I was a bit older, and I beat some quality surfers. I love the waves too, I have a lot of history there. It felt special. And the trophy was sick too. High points on the CT were when I beat Slater, three times, and Occy time at J-Bay in sick six- to eight-foot waves. When Slater beat me in Huntington last year it was three each. I know he’s a clever guy who likes to remember all sorts of stats, but I don’t know if he knows that one! And what was the low point? Getting hurt. I had a few pretty bad injuries. At the 2000 Gotcha Pro at

lucia griggi

Teahupoo I hit the reef and cut my ankle. The next morning I had a swollen leg and a full-on fever. It was staph. The guys got me on a plane and back to a decent hospital in Australia. One of the doctors drew a line on my knee and said if the infection got that far they might have to amputate. Fortunately the antibiotics kicked in and it got better. In surfing terms, how will the decade be remembered? Well, I think everyone agrees the Dream Tour was a good idea, although the quality can still be a bit hit and miss, like

it was this year. And then you’ve got all the tow-surfing stuff...the boys in Ireland have definitely upped the ante there. Right now the comp scene isn’t as big as it was a few years ago. There’s less money out there so I think surfers will go underground, go exploring, and try to make a career out of something other than competitive surfing for a while. Surfing will go a bit more hardcore. It’s cool for me, I’m over the travelling. How do you see your job changing in the coming years? I’ll still do a few events here and there,


but my main thing will be trying to build on the coaching I’m doing now – bringing the kids up to standard, and anyone else who’s looking to improve. I’ve got a lot of experience, at all levels, so I think there’s a lot I can pass on to the younger guys. – Rob Barber

Right now the comp scene isn’t as big as it was a few years ago…so I think surfers will try to make a career out of something other than competitive surfing for a while. Surfing will go a bit more hardcore.”

mickey smith


smith p r o

s u r f e r

Irish lad Fergal Smith only appeared on the scene midway through the decade, but since then his groundbreaking exploits charging heavy waves (with partner in crime Tom Lowe) have been all over the British and Irish surf media.

Where were you and what were you doing 10 years ago? I was 12...still at primary school! I had been surfing since I was a little kid, but only during the summertime, up on Achill Island where we used to go on family holidays. How has surfing in Ireland changed in the last 10 years? When I was at school, surfing was never considered as a sport in any way. Everyone was into Gaellic football, I was one of the few kids who surfed. Just to see another surfer at the beach was rare enough. Nowadays it’s like everyone you know either surfs or knows someone who surfs, on the West Coast anyway. From a sport that was looked at as being mad back then, it’s become an accepted thing to do. 


Can you pick out one particular high point of the Noughties?’s hard to pick out just one, there’s too many! I think my first high point was that session at Bumblaloids when I got my first cover [CARVE Issue 90]. That was crazy. I’d always been into hollow waves but I’d never had a session of that quality with a photographer around. It really was one of those magical sessions – sunny, warm, absolutely perfect waves. Something kinda clicked that session. From then on I was thinking, “This is what I want to do.” Since then there’ve been loads of different high points: the first trip we did to Oz, various amazing sessions at Riley’s and Lauren’s, Tahiti...

All the time we’re testing out new equipment and trying to do things better, and Mickey’s getting better angles and using different lenses. So we just want to keep pushing what can be done really.”

What about a low point? I’d say Lowey getting injured at Aileen’s. I towed him into the wave that hurt him. I don’t feel like it was my fault but it still made me feel like shit. He’s been out for eight months, on and off, and it's been pretty heavy for him and us at times.

Do you think there are more spots like Riley’s, Aileen’s and Lauren’s yet to be discovered in Ireland? Yeah, I think there probably are, but I dunno if the set-ups would be as good. More kinda ‘half waves’ that might be amazing on their day, but only work on rare occasions. I don’t think there can be too many real gems like Riley’s still waiting to be discovered. Which of the younger Irish guys do you rate? There’s quite a few getting good now, it’s cool to see more amped kids. Aaron Reid from Strandhill has got real good flow and style. And Ronan Oertzen from Sligo is super keen...he was in Hawaii with Damian Conway last month and he’s at the High Performance Surfing Center on the Gold Coast now, which I think will bring him on loads. What invention of the Noughties has changed your life the most? Well, the ski has been the biggest thing for us, without a doubt. I never thought it would become such an important part of going surfing. It’s a lot of work – getting everything ready, getting fuelled up, driving around, launching’s a whole procedure. But every time the advantages [of having it in the water] outweigh the hassles. Before, if we wanted to surf Lauren’s, we’d have to climb down the cliff, paddle for half an hour, possibly break a board, and then have to swim back – knackered – all the way around Aileen’s, and then climb the cliff again! Now we just drive there on the ski. It means we can have two or three surfs on a good day, instead of one.  How do you see your job changing in the next decade? What changes can you see ahead? I just want to keep pushing my surfing, really...keep trying to make the most of the best sessions on my own terms. Like, every time there’s a good day at Riley’s it’s not about getting 20 big barrels, it’s about trying to get three or four amazing ones. When it’s really good we don’t catch loads of waves, we wait and try to pick the very best. If you’re on the ski you try to drive it perfectly, and if you’re surfing you try to get as deep as you possibly can, on the most critical waves. All the time we’re testing out new equipment and trying to do things better, and Mickey’s getting better angles and using different lenses...all that kinda stuff. So we just want to keep pushing what can be done really. And what about exploring? Are you spending a lot of time looking for new breaks? Yeah, we’re always kinda silently exploring. It’s not as much of a necessity as it used to be, but we’re always looking. We just have to be ready for those rare days when the right conditions come together.  – Chris Power

mike searle

hugo tagholm e n v i r o n m e n t a l i s t

Longtime activist Hugo Tagholm took over the job of Campaign Director at Surfers Against Sewage a year or so ago, and he’s determined to ensure that the campaign will continue to be a force to be reckoned with in the coming years.

Where were you and what were you doing 10 years ago? I was working for an events company in London and surfing whenever I could. I’ve been a member of SAS since its inception in 1990. One of my abiding memories of my early involvement was competing in the Surf To Save contest at Polzeath in the late ’90s. What’s been your proudest achievement at SAS so far? I think launching the Protect Our Waves campaign, and also our work towards setting up UK Surfing Reserves. What have been some of the high points of the Noughties for you? Personally, meeting my fiancée Sarah and the birth of our son Darwin, both of whom make me very happy and proud.

Professionally, running SAS, because I believe passionately in the importance of coastal protection. And from a surfing perspective I’ve had some memorable Badlands sessions, a couple of standout days at Lynmouth, a session in perfect headhigh waves at Brimms Ness at 5am with three friends, and (believe it or not) a few lovely days at Bournemouth Pier! How do you think the decade be remembered? Environmentally, I think the world has finally woken up to the fact we all need to do much, much more to protect our fragile planet and finite resources. In terms of technology, what invention or development has changed your life the most? I think Skype and iChat are pretty wicked. It’s like being in Star Trek but real! How do you see your job changing in the next decade? The biggest misconception out there is that SAS has done itself out of a job, but in fact we’re more active than ever. We’re campaigning on everything from the abuse of Combined Sewer Overflows and the worsening crisis of marine litter, to the threat [from development] to waves right around the UK. What are the biggest challenges can you see ahead for SAS? I’d say balancing the need to protect surf spots with the need for renewable energy. Collectively, surfers must start coming to terms with the threat of climate change. And I think SAS will have a big part to play in helping to move forward solutions to these issues. – Kat Dawes

c ov e r

s ta r s

Surfers who scored most CARVE covers in the Noughties: 1. Nathan Phillips (4) 2. Russ Winter (3.5) 3. Alan Stokes (3) Tom Lowe (3) Fergal Smith (3) Mole Joel (3) 7. Sam Lamiroy (2) Mick Fanning (2) Spencer Hargraves (2) Rusty Long (2) Dave Rastovich (2)

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WHY WE LOVE OUR HOME BREAKS 02 9 771354 508054



From Issue 34 to Issue 112; on montage covers, largest shot scored a half.

courtesy the sea

Alex Chisholm m u s i c i a n One half of rising psychedelic / alternative blues duo The Sea, Alex Chisholm still lives in his home town of Newquay and surfs whenever he can. The Sea have been on headline tours in the USA and Europe this year, and have another Euro tour and a new album planned for early next year.

Where were you and what were you doing 10 years ago? I was playing in a Newquay band called Void. We did loads of touring and some pretty big shows. It was like an apprenticeship, learning how to do things and survive on tour without burning out too quickly. I was still at Treviglas School in Newquay. I was more into my surfing

when I was younger – I still surf whenever I can but I had more time for it then. Do you try to arrange your tour schedule around the waves? I’d love to, but it doesn’t work out like that! We went to LA and managed to get a couple of surfs there. But mostly we’re playing gigs about as far away from the waves as you can get. What’s your proudest musical achievement of the last 10 years? We supported Muse in Teignmouth this summer and that was amazing. Most of our musical achievements have been in the last year, I think. We keep going up which is good! We also played a free festival in a town called Wintertour in Germany and the streets were rammed with people for about two miles. They treat you really well over there.


drives me crazy! When I speak to my family or my girlfriend at home and they tell me it’s pumping, it’s so frustrating. It’s not really what I want to hear when I’m 3,000 miles from the nearest break! I did get a few really good sessions in this summer though. Usually I get up early if I’m going away, get out there before I go. How do you think the decade will be remembered, from a musical standpoint? Sadly, I think it’s going to be all about X-Factor. I absolutely hate

really good decade for music. There’s a lot of good electro stuff coming through now as well, like MGMT and Crystal Castles. It’s all changed massively. Do you think going surfing in Britain is more or less fun than it was 10 years ago? Well it’s definitely more crowded. Ten or 15 years ago, you’d hardly see anyone out during the winter months, maybe 20 at Fistral if it was a really good day. But now it’s heaving all the time, even if it’s

I tend to not check the surf too much when I’m away ‘cos missing good waves drives me crazy!”

Do you miss a lot of classic sessions with all the touring you guys do? I tend to not check the surf too much when I’m away ‘cos missing good waves

that programme with a passion. It’s one of the main things you see in the media, but it’s put music back so far. People I haven’t seen for a while sometimes say, “Hey, why don’t you go on X-Factor?” I’m like, wow, why don’t you insult me some more! But away from all that, there have been some really good bands in the last decade – The Libertines, Razorlight, Snow Patrol, Franz Ferdinand and loads of other underground bands. I think it’s been a

complete shit! I like being back home though. It’s nice to have a break from being on the road, not having to drive about 500 miles every day. – Kat Dawes

The Sea’s debut album Get It Back is available now; check the boys’ website ( for a taster.

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alex williams

reubyn going crazy in the mentawais in ‘08


Ash p r o

s u r f e r

Britain’s most explosive young talent finished the decade on an upward trajectory. 2009 saw him taking on the pro’s at Mundaka (thanks to a wildcard from Billabong), winning the British title at Fistral, and busting all manner of wild aerials

be the main ones. Well stoked. The biggest one was winning the European Junior title, that was really cool. In surfing terms, how will the decade be remembered? All the guys in this country who’ve been pushing it and bringing things up to world class level. Russ, Stokesy, Lamiroy, Egor, Nathan, Skindog...all those boys. There were only a few doing it before. Also Fergal Smith and those boys, what they’ve been doing is nuts. What invention or development has changed your life in the last decade? I think computer shaping is amazing. Good winter wetsuits have made things easier too, being so much more flexible. Just equipment in general getting so much better.

from Bude to Arugam Bay.

Where were you and what were you doing 10 years ago? I was in Bude, looking forward to going to Indo for two months with Joss and my dad. I’m 21 now so I would have been 11 then. What’s been your proudest surfing achievement of the last 10 years? Um...just being able to make a living from surfing I guess. Doing what I like doing and getting paid for it.

Is going surfing in Britain more or less fun than it was 10 years ago? It’s just as fun but there are way more people surfing nowadays. It’s so busy it spoils it a bit...sometimes you can end up getting out feeling grumpier than when you got in! (Laughs) That’s not really what you’re doing it for, is it? Who are your heroes of the Noughties? All the best surfers, all the guys who are pushing it out there around the world. Also my family, who’ve helped me loads.

Many people would say you’re the most talented high-performance surfer in Britain right now, in terms of the moves you can pull. Are you stoked to get that kind of recognition? Of course, totally. It’s good to get that kind of recognition for sure. I’m just enjoying what I’m doing and hopefully getting better, and if people think that it’s cool.

What board design will score the most photos in the mags in the next 10 years? I think it’ll be the tri-fin still.

What were your surfing high points of the last 10 years? I’ve got quite a few. Winning the European Juniors, doing the CTs at Mundaka, surfing some really perfect waves with hardly anyone out in Indo...those would

Who would you say have been the three most significant British or Irish surfers of the last 10 years? Obviously Russ for all he’s done, and now also Ferg and Lowey who’ve gone a bit crazy and made a massive name for themselves.


Board design that’ll be consigned to the history books? I don’t know...I think every fashion and fad comes back around, like quads.

I think computer shaping is amazing. Good winter wetsuits have made things easier too, being so much more flexible.” Most significant pro’s? Andy Irons, Slater and Dane Reynolds. How do you see your job changing in the next decade? I just want to try to get better, surf loads of good waves, get more experience. Next year I’m going to be doing more WQS comps, getting on the road. I’m free to just go off now. – Rob Barber

dav eferguson


Burgis l






Gordon Burgis, 1965 British Champion,

dave ferguson

has watched surfing evolve over

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half a century. In August he and a couple of hundred other Channel Islanders gathered for a huge party at the Grand Hotel in St Helier to celebrate the 50th anniversary of

Jersey Surfboard Club, Britain’s oldest surf club.

You must have been proud to have been involved with the club’s 50th anniversary celebrations. How was the party? It was fantastic. Great atmosphere, great people and a fantastic vibe. It was a star-studded gathering, in Jersey surfing terms. Several of the original members of the club were there, along with guiding light Dave Grimshaw, and dozens who’ve achieved contest success over the years like Steve Harewood, Dave Ward, Clayton Lidster, Renny and Piers Gould, Mark Durbano, Johnny Carden and Arlene Maltman. Plus a whole host of younger surfers who are setting high

standards. Honoured guests included Francis Distinguin, Dave Friar and Roger Mansfield. What were the surfing highlights of the Noughties for you? I think all the 50th anniversary celebrations put together, the whole year has been fantastic. The club organised loads of things: a surf art exhibition, a festival, the anniversary dinner, and the European Championships in September. There’s also going to be a book, Surfing Secrets, all about Jersey surfing, covering 50 years. It’s been an opportunity to delve into our memories and remember how good those good times really were!    You’ve watched surfing evolve over

Ben Freeston w







l msw

T h en a n d n ow What we watched in


The Occumentary Sabotaj Loose Change Litmus Good Times What we watched in


Magic Seaweed is one of Britain’s most popular surf websites and the man behind it is Ben Freeston. We hit ‘contact’ to ask him how it all began.

developed over the last ten years.

Where were you and what were you doing 10 years ago? I was living in a van in New Zealand – surfing, scrounging, doing crap jobs and trying to work out what to do with my life. How did you get the idea to set up Magic Seaweed? I found out that there was all this data out there that could really, really help me find waves if I could understand it and turn it into something I could easily read. I never planned for it to become my day job. I didn’t think anyone else would want to use it, but it snowballed from giving a few people the link. Then I just watched it grow.     In terms of technology, what invention or development in the Noughties has changed your life the most? All of it I guess: the internet, iPhones, sat nav, digital’s all pretty cool. But the internet earns me my living and allows me to work by the coast, so it’s got to be that – the way the internet has

How do you think this decade will be remembered? Flat screen TVs, bank bailouts and shitty TV talent shows. Hero of the Noughties? Ricky Bobby [Talladega Nights].   Villain of the Noughties? Simon Cowell. 

manoeuvrable and catch waves easily. Not asking for much then! There seems to be a lot of interest in surfing history and heritage at the moment. Do you think that’s overdue? Is it about time the pioneers got the recognition they deserve? I think its great that the early days of surfing are getting some exposure. I know that in Australia there’s been a huge resurgence of interest in ‘60s surfing. And the same thing is starting to happen here with things like Roger’s book The Surfing Tribe and the forthcoming Jersey Surfboard Club book. They’re capturing the spirit and soul of surfing in times past, and also explaining how important the early days were in laying

the foundations for the sport as we know it today. Incidentally, I think Rod Sumpter was way ahead of his time, bringing an awareness of the magic of that era to modern day audiences through the medium of his surf films. Pioneers always deserve recognition, not least the Brits who started it all. – Chris Power

Most significant British or Irish surfers of the Noughties? The guys pushing the big-wave boundaries in Ireland. How do you see your job changing in the next decade? Well, I could never have imagined how it would change over the past 10 years, so I’ve got no idea what might happen in the long term. I don’t think anyone has really, with the technology changing so fast. Hopefully I’ll be doing less work and more surfing...not that I’m too hard done by! – Kat Dawes

Stranger Than Fiction Modern Collective A Fly in the Champagne Revolution Still Filthy st ouen’s – where it all began.

50 years. Some of the changes you’ve seen over the decades must have been quite amazing. Being around in those early days and seeing how quickly things changed was really exciting. Back in 1959 they rode 14-foot keel boards here, which were great for paddling but only allowed you to surf straight in on the whitewater. The following year an 11-foot board was built from plywood using templates from South Africa. It was a rounded Malibu-type shape and it had a large fin. This enabled surfers to start riding across the green unbroken wave and perform manoeuvres. Soon there were balsa-and-fibreglass boards, then foam-and-fibreglass boards. Then suddenly everything seemed to take off – there were contests, surf clubs, the

whole California surf culture boom... it was dramatic. And the changes this last decade have also been pretty dramatic. Now there’s tow-in surfing with jetskis, which is just amazing. And today’s young surfers are getting so much speed and air time due to the lightweight equipment they’re riding. You wonder how far it can go.   What invention or development of the Noughties has made the most impact on your life?  I guess it has to be the way the internet has developed – surf forecasts, websites, all the information you can get, the ease of communication and so on. And also epoxy boards. I’m getting a new 9’ 6” next year and I want it to be light, fast,

carve surfing magazine 61

Ben Skinner pro longboarder Ben Skinner has won so many trophies in the last few years you wonder how his mantelpiece can take the weight. But Skindog’s not just a champion longboarder he’s an all-rounder who’s amped to jump on a shortboard, a retroboard or a tow board, whichever will be the most fun.

Where were you and what were you doing 10 years ago? Um...I was 15, so this time 10 years ago I would have been in Lanza, at the Quiksilver training camp with Gabe Davies, Elko and Tom Carroll. In general terms, what’s been your proudest surfing achievement of the last 10 years? I’m just happy that I’ve been able to live the dream really, ‘cos making a living out of surfing is pretty difficult. In terms of results, I’ve achieved a lot this year – three European titles, and 10th overall on the World Tour. Ultimately I want to break into the top five in the world. I think that’s a realistic goal. Can you pick out one single high point of the Noughties? Having my kid, Lukas. In surfing terms, how do you think the decade be remembered? Well, first I think there’s been a revolution with boards. Board design has helped longboarding come on a long way, and I think it’s so exciting now. Also, here in Britain, I think we’ve been really lucky to have the BLU contest’s really helped guys like me. Now British and European longboarders are starting to make a big impact on the world scene. In the next 10 years I think Europe could easily have a World Champion

62 carve surfing magazine

longboarder. Also tow-surfing. I’m going to focus on that now that the big contests are over. There are a few slabs around Cornwall which have been producing some amazing waves recently. Who’s your hero of the Noughties? Bonga [Perkins] for winning the World Title at 38. His natural ability in the water is amazing, he’s a true waterman. Villain of the Noughties? Osama bin Laden. Is going surfing in Britain more or less fun than it was 10 years ago? It’s always fun! I think it’s evolving all the time. Everyone’s surfing together, all age groups. It’s crowded, but here in Cornwall there are loads of places to surf and if you’re keen you can still get a surf on your own. It’s down to things like the internet, that has changed things massively. How do you see your job changing in the next decade? I want to compete as much as possible. Bonga won the World Title last year when he was 38. I’m 25. So I definitely want to carry on competing, carry on doing what I’m doing. I’ve also got some other plans in the pipeline. Like, I want to build up my surf school, and do some things with disabled kids. And I want to pass on some of the stuff I’ve learnt to the younger kids, to help them progress, and hopefully produce some good longboarders for the future. – Rob Barber

yves sobanski

ben on his way to winning the etl european title at estoril in november.

Rivie Verran


Smith p h o t o g r a p h e r Where were you and what were you doing 10 years ago? I was here in Ireland for most of the autumn, surfing and shooting water footage for a bodyboard video I was making, Metaphysical. Then I went back to Cornwall and did two months’ work in a factory to earn some money for a trip to Australia.  Proudest achievement of the last 10

64 carve surfing magazine

years? I’d say being able to confidently approach a real heavy session and know that if I work to the best of my ability I’ll be able to come out with a really special image.  Can you pick out a single image that summed up your photography in the Noughties? I reckon that shot of Lowey at Lauren’s a couple of years ago [CARVE Issue 94 covershot]. That really defined all the work I’d put into my photography, and all the effort the lads had put into their surfing. We didn’t have a jetski or anything back then. That was all done by manpower... just swimming and paddling f--king miles round to Lauren’s and dealing with a big swell, all alone. Lowey got about ten absolute beatings before he paddled into that good one. What invention has changed your life the most? 

Digital cameras. With film cameras you only had 36 shots, so [shooting from the water] you had to conserve those shots for, like, six hours! Or else keep swimming back to the land to reload. With digital, if it’s good, I might take 400 shots in one session without having to miss a wave. Where do you see surf photography going in the next 10 years? My take on surf photography is that you have to be constantly getting more tech with what you can do. I remember when I started it was like, “Yeah, got my fisheye, let’s see who can go the deepest!” But I’ve realised over my career that’s kinda the stupidest way to go about taking photos! (Laughs) You might get a cool angle, but if you do that every session your stuff gets boring real quick. And you don’t do justice to the waves. What I’m into now is still putting myself into heavy positions in heavy waves but trying to get tight shots with bigger lenses, focusing

and composing under pressure. As a photographer, do you generally find that the only time you get to go surfing is when it’s cloudy and raining? Yeah, for sure! “It’s six foot and pissing down...brilliant!” (Laughs) You’ve got to shoot when it’s sunny and perfect, so usually you don’t get to surf on those days. But actually I don’t mind surfing when it’s pissing down and miserable ‘cos no-one else can be arsed, so you don’t have to deal with the crowds. You’re out there on your own, lovin’ it!

You, Ferg and Tom only started surfing Riley’s in 2007 but it’s had a massive amount of media coverage since. How has the scene there changed? It’s gone from being our quiet little sanctuary to the talk of the county at times, among surfers anyway. I knew people would see my photographs and

mickey smith

want to check the place out, but the way it’s changed down there is weird for me. Shooting photos there has always been a double-edged sword. When I first saw the wave I knew it was everything I’d been looking for. The shit we were doing that first season was so heavy it had to be documented, and I just tried to go about it sensitively. But secrets aren't safe for long once photos get published. Every good session at Riley’s in October there were people lining the rocks, half of them with cameras and camcorders, and a lot of them weren't even aware of a need to be sensitive. And every time it’s small and sunny a few more people paddle out... which again is cool and to be expected, but some of them honestly have no idea what they're getting into. Even when it’s three to four foot, it’s still a f--king heavy wave. We’ve had to deal with so many injuries down there, especially in the last year. Even some of the best guys have been hurt. Peter Conroy, a local

guy, broke his back. Dan Skajarowski [top Cornish bodyboarder] smashed his kneecap into five pieces. Riley’s a violent wave of consequence and people will inevitably get hurt riding it. So, yeah, there’s definitely some negatives about it getting more exposure, and for me a feeling of responsibility at times. But on the flipside, there’s positives too. There's a strong feeling of respect for the wave among the guys that regularly surf there. It’s also been rad seeing some of the younger lads throwing themselves into a few heavy ones this season...Hugh Galloway and Tom Gillespie for example. And just being out there on an epic day, seeing a lineup of good mates, everyone buzzing, pushing each other and sharing amazing heavy waves...that’s pretty cool, it’s the best feeling ever.    How do you think the decade will be remembered? What have been the biggest changes in surfing?

I think jetskis have made the biggest change. Jetskis have put humans into situations they physically couldn’t have been 10 or 15 years ago. And I think the whole performance level has changed as a result. You can’t surf a three- to four-


I think jetskis have made the biggest change. Jetskis have put humans into situations they physically couldn’t have been 10 or 15 years ago.”

foot slab and go, “Man, this is a crazy slab!", ‘cos it’s not! (Laughs) It’s got to be 10 foot at least, and you have to fade way back behind the thing to be taken seriously these days. – Chris Power

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mike searle

nigel semmens s






Newquay’s Nigel Semmens has been one of the country’s most respected shapers since, well, the dawn of time virtually! We asked him how the Noughties were for him.

Where were you and what were you doing 10 years ago? I was at the old factory in Pargolla Road, shaping boards by hand and working far too hard! (Laughs) I was working more I was than surfing. Then came along the shaping machine and it changed shapers’

66 carve surfing magazine

lives forever. So I’m guessing you’re going to pick that as the thing that’s changed your life the most in the Noughties...? Yeah, without a doubt. What model is it, and when did you get it installed? It’s an APS 3000. I bought it in 2003. It takes about 15 minutes to shape a blank, and you can replicate a shape precisely, over and over again. It’s just amazing, it makes creating boards such a pleasure. What board design will score the most photos in surf mags in the next 10 years? The boards that Kelly Slater will be shaping. What board design of the Noughties will get consigned to the history books? Parabolics. As it sounds! Heroes of the Noughties? Kelly Slater, Ryan Giggs.

Villains of the Noughties? Bankers, politicians, terrorists...I think they’re all pretty similar! Three most significant British / Irish surfers of the Noughties? Russell Winter, Ben Skinner and Fergal Smith. Three most significant pro’s? Slater, Fanning and Irons. What was your proudest achievement of the last 10 years? Receiving a Lifetime Achievement award at the UKPST end-of-season party last year. That all came about from being in love with surfing for the last 39 years. From your point of view as a surfer and shaper, how will the decade be remembered? Well, from a shaping point of view, I think the board industry has definitely suffered because of the over production of poor quality surfboards from China. But from a surfing point of view, it’s been amazing to watch the progression of aerial surfing.  – Mike Searle

T h e n a n d now British Champions


Open: Warren Llewellyn Junior: John Buchorski Women: Tracey Boxhall Longboard: Chris Griffiths British Champions


Open: Reubyn Ash Junior: Toby Donachie Women: Sarah Beardmore Longboard: Ben Skinner

s a m t s i r h ctomers ellrourry m cus oa t ! r a e y w e n y p p a and a h

DTL surfer:matt smith location: ireland photo: Mickey smith

Boardriders • Hayle • Cornwall Market Square Arcade, Copperhouse, Hayle, Cornwall TR27 4EA Email: • Tel: 01736 757025

clay marzo goes into orbit somewhere over the pacific. turn the page to find out more about him.


Future Stars As the tide ebbs away from the first decade of the new millennium – and leaves the standout surfers of the last 10 years floundering on the beach – we take a look at the surfers who are waiting in the wings, ready to give the old guard a cheeky, “Move over, Grandad!”. So in no particular order we give you the top 10 dudes and dudettes whose moves might just leave us wide-eyed, slack-jawed and with something to talk about for the next 10 years. Compiled by Steve England • words by alex hapgood

Wherever the next 10 years take him, one thing is for sure: everyone will still be loving Clay Marzo. Since emerging onto the scene and being hailed by Andy Irons, Occy and Slater as easily the best surfer of his generation, Clay has being blowing minds and barrels with his impossible elastic-man antics. Diagnosed with a form of autism in ’07, he’s happy to pass up the in-your-face merry-go-round of the Tour for now, and let his surfing do the talking. If you haven’t already, check out his Best Biographywinning film Just Add Water to see much, much more than top-drawer surfing. Final word from Laird: “Clay’s an artist who can’t be pigeon-holed. He’s something all together different that should be cherished.” Just keep doing your thing Clay.

tim jones/stryker


Clay Marzo {20}

Dane Reynolds {24}

Nobody doubts that Dane Reynolds has got it all; it’s just a case of how he chooses to use it. One of the sport’s most respected free surfers, Dane thinks that the format of modern contest surfing rewards safe surfing and stifles creativity. So he’s written his own Dane Reynolds rule book and just goes for it. Properly. Like he’s showing off to his girlfriend on the beach. It may not win him events, but it did win him Rookie of the Year last year and plenty of plaudits from his fellow pro’s – and that means there’s always someone looking to buy him a bevvy. What more do you want from life?

Owen Wright {19}

Owen Wright doesn’t mess around. He knows that if you’re going to be up there for the next 10 years, then taking out the guy who’s been all over it for the last 10 is a pretty good marker to lay down. So Owen landed a decisive punch for the new generation by putting an end to Slater’s ’09 title chances in Portugal. Using his wildcard to maximum effect, he took out Slater in the second round and cruised through to the quarters where, after scoring a 10, he took a pasting on a double-overhead Supertubos barrel and perforated his eardrum. Kids eh! On the Tour next year though…watch this space. sequence: fireden

Dusty Payne {20}

Despite having a name that suggests a ‘too much time in the loft’ lung condition, North Shore homeboy Dusty Payne is on the brink of hitting the Dream Tour, just needing a solid showing at Sunset to join the big boys next year. With Hawaii always keen for another world-class ambassador, he’s got plenty of support and you wouldn’t bet against him being the poster boy of the next generation of island surfers. In his spare time Dusty enjoys getting on the covers of Surfer and Stab magazines – keep it up Dusty.


74 carve surfing magazine sequence: tim jones/stryker

We hear a lot about the ‘new generation’, and Queensland’s Julian Wilson leads the pack. Since his mind-blowing envelope-pushing antics on Young Guns III, he’s now – like the Will Young of the surfing world – firmly ensconced with sponsors, coaches and mentors alike and is sure to have a significant impact on the sport (and the CT) over the next 10 years. Don’t believe us? Eyes down for his own Irons Brothers film Scratching The Surface, out next year. The trailer alone is jaw-dropping. If you want something to make you feel a bit better and like, just maybe, there’s still a point to heading out for a wave – his mum paints the designs on his boards. Not so clever now, Julian.

Julian Wilson {21}

simon williams

Steph Gilmore {21}

Sometimes it feels like surfing runs in cycles, and people have ‘their’ time. Layne Beachley had her time and, when she hung up her leash everyone assumed that the chasing pack, who had been trying to keep up for years, would have theirs. And then Steph Gilmore appeared on the scene. The Gold Coast girl won her rookie season in ’07, stormed it again last year, and has won again in 2009, making her the only surfer, male or female, to win every year they’ve been on Tour. This chick definitely doesn’t need any help with winning contests, and you wouldn’t bet against her still doing so in 10 years time.

lucia griggi

Alana Blanchard {19}

lucia griggi

Alana is a sponsor’s dream ticket (well done Rip Curl). Even if she couldn’t surf that well she’d earn her keep in bikini sales, but – sometimes life’s just not fair ladies – she can surf. And not just surf, but mix it up on the North Shore when most grown men would be nursing that recurring-when-Pipe-is-double-overhead knee twinge. Just to prove a North Shore point, she’s just won the Vans Hawaiian Pro, taking out two previous world champs en route. A bright bikini-clad future awaits…

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sequence: tim jones/stryker

Jordy Smith {21}


By some crazy twist of ‘the number 10’ fate, Durbanite Jordy Smith is – at the time of writing – sitting 10th on the World Tour this year. Maybe a shot across the bows for the rest of the Tour, maybe not. Either way, Jordy Smith is as close as we get to a ‘dead cert’ for World Tour prevalence for the next decade. Having bagged Rookie of the Year in ’06 and with improving results on the Tour for the last two years, there seems to be a just-getting-better pattern emerging. Good timing Jordy.

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Gabe Medina {15}

Never mind this year’s Quik Pro at Hossegor, it was the subsequent King of the Groms that got everyone talking. You couldn’t step onto La Plage Centrale without hearing the words ‘Medina’, ‘unreal’, and ‘rips’ being used in the same sentence. With an aerial-driven 20-point score in the final, plenty of people reckoned they had just witnessed the future of contest surfing. 2009 also saw the Brazilian become the youngest ever winner of a WQS event, and Gabe is a definite contender for the ‘more time in the air than on the wave’ award sometime next decade. Call in Norris McWhirter.

Okay, so Hawaiian super-grom Ian Gentil won’t get to enjoy his first legal beer until well into the next decade and, in fairness, should probably still be tidying up his Action Men. But Maui’s latest little ripper has instead put himself firmly in the spotlight with his pint-sized punts. He really does rip like a grown-up and, with a 5th at King of the Groms and two 10-point rides in the final of the prestigious NSSA nationals, he may well be lifting a World Tour trophy well before he orders his first shandy.

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Ian Gentil {14}

chris power

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Planning a surf trip?

We have the best surf accommodation, surf schools, shops and all the info you need available at the click of a mouse. Stay in surfer-friendly accommodation near the breaks you see in the pages of CARVE. This is the resource we use when we plan our photo trips, so if you’re looking for somewhere to sleep, eat, shop or party then check out The Surf Directory. Plus there’s all the latest news, surf forecasting, and an extensive database of information on over 100 top surf breaks and destinations with a comprehensive event and gig guide.

Wherever you want to go in Britain and Ireland, check it out at Spend more time in the water with The Surf Directory

So we’ve had a bit of new wave controversy, a retrospective and a glimpse into the future, but what we all care most about is what’s on our own doorstep, and holy crap it’s been pumping these last couple of months. We’ve been inundated with A-grade material this autumn, and it was a hell of a job narrowing it all down, wading through thousands of shots. It’s been a hell of an 18 months for waves, but autumn has surely taken the biscuit! Words: Steve England

mickey smith

If you need any proof that surfing is art and print is not dead, then look at this picture. The power of the wave, the way it feels, the shallow rock shelf drawing lines up its green face, throwing amazing amounts of water a quite frightening distance through the air. Study the composition of the lip, the patterns, the way the liquid moves and sparkles. The rider’s strong, confident body language rising to the challenge, yet too respectful of his partner to appear nonchalant. Imagine the photographer swimming in the mostly non-existent channel, his fitness and knowledge his only defence against a force that could quite easily end his short creative life. Anthony Walsh, Riley’s.

gary knights

mickey smith

Al Mennie is a builder from Northern Ireland. His tow partner Cotty is a plumber from Devon. Britain and Ireland are fantastic bastions of the blue collar surfer. Sure, there are few exceptions, talented and canny souls who have worked out the system and get paid to surf, but in the main we are all working all the hours God gives between swells to get the petrol money to chase our dreams. This is nowhere more impressive than in the realm of the big-wave rider. You have to admire the sheer dedication of these self-taught aficionados pushing the envelope in the wilds of the Atlantic. 10 years ago this would never have been thought possible. The winter of 2011 will see the number of XXL nominees from these shores go into double figures. Most entries will have been paid for in calluses and hard labour, as well as training and dedication. Yorkshire grunt.

mickey smith

gary knights

Gabe Davies and friend share a chocolate-coloured moment both will remember for a long time. Spot C.

Johnny Fryer throwing some fin and having fun before the the temperatures dropped.

alex young

Surfers are relatively simple creatures. All we want is a sucky section to boost, the thrill of a decent tube and the challenge of a cold lonely peak. This one is a lot bigger and heavier than it looks.

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stu norton

East coast reeler. Micah Lester, Fistral fin waft.

alex young

jason feast

mike searle

After a brief spell of uncertainty, autumn ’09 kicked off in October with some powerful swells. Loads of spots went off. Russ Winter headed off to Spot T in Cornwall, followed by most of the Southwest surf media. It’s a heavy slab of reef with a left and a right. It’s not really a secret, having featured in this mag for many years and been surfed on and off since the ’70s. The left is the better wave and home to small bunch of spongers. The right is a board-snapping lottery with one in 10 makable due to the weird warping takeoff and a pinching end section. Not a place you’d travel to surf – makes for nice photos though.

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robbie brady

Anthony Walsh boosting on a remote Gaelic reef.

A lonely peak breaks unridden somewhere in the Southwest.

Robin Kent, admiring the colours of a low-tide Badlands bowl.

jason feast


mickey smith

Secret entrance, West Cornwall.


Surfing is the most natural, fun, yet immensely frustrating art one could conceive of. It brings us so much intrinsic pleasure, releasing all those little endorphins, bringing us close to nature, giving us so much reason to drink and make merry. This wave is at the bottom of the hill from my house. It’s not always like this. In fact, it has been terrible for years, but recently every time I turn my back, it does this. Then on my return it’s fat mush. It would be okay if surfers were considerate and sympathetic, but by the time you read this Marcus Lacselles may be dead. Smug, but dead. It is that maddening. If this happens again I may shoot him, then retire to one of the two pubs on the way back up the hill and drink myself to death.

mike searle

This Cornish point (above) broke for several weeks on and off in October and November, often drawing a crowd. No-one surfs it better than Reubyn Ash (below).

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farscapes gary knights

Rumour has it that Shaun Skilton (above) somehow shot himself with a spear gun at the start of autumn. I have no idea how he would achieve such a thing. Only in the Badlands! Cornish lines (above).

mike searle

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mickey smith

mickey smith

mickey smith

Once upon a time you’d only see this type of photo in magazines like Surfer or Surfing World. It’s picture that is representative of the end of a decade: the work of a surfer and photographer who have truly come into their own, and a wave that has only been surfed for four years or so. Fergal Smith shot from behind the peak at Aileen’s by Mickey Smith.

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will bailey

will bailey

will bailey

Wales has had a cracking autumn, with plenty of swells going down in every cranny from the Severn Bridge around to the Lleyn Peninsula. Shame the rugby didn’t go down as well, but hey ho! Nath Phillips (left) smashing the top off one down his local, while Struan Wilkins gets pitted (above). Funnily enough, Will Bailey rang us one day to say this spot was going off, the best he had ever seen it and it was‌empty.

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This day at Riley’s was the biggest and most perfect Mickey Smith had ever seen. He captioned it simply ‘Ferg. Insane.’

mickey smith



semi-guns and guns jason childs

joel fitzgerald, g-land.

So winter is here, and if you aren’t thinking of heading off to Indo, then you’re probably thinking of heavier winter waves, and a bit of size and power at home. While your little fish or normal wafer will probably still go in larger surf, they can make life hard work. A step-up board adds a bit of float to compensate for the extra speed and power you are facing and enable earlier entry into steeper harder breaking waves. Tightening the tail and width dimensions add control in the more powerful conditions. This all equals more waves and more fun. Something a little more pulled in and sleeker will up your wave count, get you into waves early enough to make critical drops, and will hold your line when you pull in. If you get it sussed you should be able to jump up and down between your normal board and your step-up with minimal disruption to your surfing. Lighter surfers can get away with small changes in volume, heavier surfers need a bit more beef. It’s all about the volume to weight ratios. Also consider the type of wave you are surfing; lined-up Indo equals nice fine rails, big lumps of Atlantic or Hawaiian raw swell you need a bit of beef; for slabs, narrow, short and rockered. So check out the little beauties on page 104. And if you still have any questions hit the website, or email us direct. We’ve been lobster diving on all sorts of reefs all over the globe and have the scars to prove it!

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board guide Visit and read all about the latest performance surfboards, guns, retro and longboards on the market.

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photos: MIckey smith, will bailey and John Millard

boards/104 Nigel Semmens Travel Board

JP 8´0˝ Gun

Resin8 6´4˝ Mini-gun

6´4˝ to 7´4˝ x 18˝ to 193/4˝ x 2-1/4˝ to 2-3/4˝ These boards ride predictably and sensitively. They build confidence and allow you to concentrate on making the most out of the waves rather than worrying whether you can catch that overhead barrel or if the rail will hold. These boards are normally custom made to suit the rider depending on where you are going and what size waves you want to surf. We do occasionally do some for stock, and these are designed to handle a late drop, come cleanly off the bottom and then hold a high and tight line in the barrel, before finishing with a nice roundhouse…your classic best wave. Web: www.nsboards. Tel: 01637 880421

8´0˝ x 19˝ x 2-3/4˝ Gun for Chris Noble, Thurso local. This board is not for the fainthearted! Web: www.jpsurfboards. Tel: 01792 851759

6´4˝ x 18-1/4˝ x 23-1/16˝ High-performance minigun also available in slightly thicker versions. For overhead and bigger conditions, the rounded pintail helps hold the board into the wave with more rocker to keep you tight in the pocket. A subtle single-to-double concave maintains speed and manoeuvrability. The ultimate board for places like Indo as it’s very tough too! Hand shaped, glassed and sanded. Web: www.orcashop. Tel: 01637 878074

Luke Young 6´6˝ Iron Fist Micro

Simon Anderson DSC

Santa Cruz 6´4˝ Archy Rounded Pin

6´6˝ x 18-1/2˝ x 2-5/16˝ The model is the Iron Fist Micro shortboard for bigger, more powerful waves. More drawn-in rounded pintail and slight single-to-double concave vee increases control and drive. Tighter rocker line throughout to fit into steep barrelling faces. Web: www. Tel: 07789663693

104 carve surfing magazine

6´6˝ x 18-1/4˝ x 2-1/4˝ The DSC (Deep to Shallow Concave) model is based on a winning formula that creates immense speed and hold through turns. A slight single concave with a smooth rocker, low soft rails and rounded pintail to handle the extra power and speed. This board is your ste[-up board for surf in the five- to eight-foot range. Fins are moved forward as well, producing a faster freer feel to accommodate the modern approach to surfing in bigger waves. For the double step-up board there is vee from halfway through to the tail. Web: www. Tel: 01736 757025

6´4” x 19” x 5-1/8” The 6´4˝ Archy rounded pin is a perfect everyday board for heavier surfers or a good step-up board for a lighter rider when the swell picks up. PowerLyte EXT for decreased weight and increased flex. Web: www. Tel: 01656 746984


the online surfshop

orca shop

the online surfshop

resin8 orca surf surfboards the online surfshop

NO MOuLDS - NO COMPUTERS. RESIN8 surfboards are hand shaped, glassed, sanded, and finished by a dedicated crew of 16 craftsmen all of whom have been with the project since we started in 2002. Now available from orcashop.

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We like to make travel surfboards as custom orders. So if you are planning a trip don’t hesitate to call Nigel for a chat or email us. Nigel Semmens Ocean Magic Surfboard Factory tel: 01637 880421 website: blog:

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Stokesy: king again LUCIA GRIGGI

Alan Stokes became the 2009 UK Pro Surf Tour Champion after he kept his nerve at the final event a Fistral Beach, held in testing six-foot plus surf. He was one of five contenders for the coveted crown coming into the last event of the six-contest tour. One by one Oli Adams, Reubyn Ash and then Mark Harris rolled over for Stoksey, leaving it up to the most improved surfer on the Tour, Tom Butler, to push him all the way to the semis. Having bagged the title Stokesy could relax for the final, where he got second behind defending champion Reubin Pearce. Gwen Spurlock took the women’s title — an amazing comeback after taking a year off to recover from a serious head injury.



The run-up to the most absorbing ever finish on the UK Pro Surf Tour began a month earlier with the North East Open at Longsands Beach, Tynemouth. This event is run in conjunction with the extreme sports festival Xperience09 and is supported by North Tyneside Council (can you imagine a council in the Southwest doing that?). Anyway, the long haul up the M1 was rewarded with some fun three-foot peaks on Longsands and it was good to see some of the local crew having a dig at the ratings leaders — the standout was Sandy Kerr who had English Champ Johnny Fryer on the rack for a large part of the heat with some quick and committed surfing. Johnny found the score he needed with just minutes to go.








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7/12/09 14:38:40

Russell Winter had decided to compete on the last leg of the Tour, and as you would expect he was dominating. He still possesses the most powerful snap in UK surfing and he was using it to devastating effect on his backhand on a stream of mid-tide lefts. However, he didn’t have it all his own way as rookie Toby Donachie had quietly made his way to the final on a brand new 5´10˝ with a deep concave that seemed to suit both surfer and waves. Toby’s opening salvo put him firmly in the lead, and then he found a rare walling right that he floated and hacked all the way in before popping the sweetest forehand air to finish. Could this be the shock of the season? Well, no. Russ latched on to another left and in the space of 25 years unleashed three textbook heavy-duty smacks from the old school and it was all over. Reubin Pearce and Egor Harris had powered their way to the final, but their wave magnets went into neutral in the fickle high tide peaks. RESULTS: 1. Russell Winter 2. Toby Donachie 3. Mark Harris 4. Reubin Pearce.


Welsh brands AXL and DOH (Double Overhead, who distribute Billabong, Santa Cruz, Realm and Carve sunnies in the UK) stepped up to the plate at short notice to rescue the Welsh event. Russ Winter was back at Rest Bay to defend his title, but it was Oli Adams who stole the show. Oli was on form right from the first heat, pushing the tail through the lip seemingly at will, his freeflowing style making the difficult one- to three-foot waves look easy.

With Stoksey away on QS duty, Reubyn Ash’s and Tom Butler’s semi-final places were enough to put them at the top of the leaderboard, one and two respectively. Egor Harris made another final, his fourth in a row. But the righthanders failed to deliver for Egor and Russ and it was the lefts that set free Johnny Fryer and the irrepressible Oli. In an emotional speech Oli said, “People do not understand how much this means to me; I'm only just now getting back to full fitness. To beat Johnny, Russ and Egor in the final is a fantastic feeling.” This result set up the grand finale with Oli joining in the race for the Tour title. RESULTS: 1. Oli Adams 2. Johnny Fryer 3. Russell Winter 4. Mark Harris.




This contest saw conditions at both ends of the extreme from the ridiculous to the sublime. Saturday at Fistral was ludicrous — waves in the six- to eight-foot region being decimated by a near gale-force cross-shore wind; so it was around to the Bay and the perfect three-foot closeouts! Actually, Towan does have its moments and most surfers found some lips to hit to make it through to Super Sunday. Surprisingly not making the cut were Oli Adams in the Open, and Gwen Spurlock and Beth Mason in the Women's division. The wind was subdued on Sunday, but Fistral was in no mood for tap dancing: chunky overhead, occasionally double-overhead sets randomly pumped through with big shutdown sections, but if you got the right one (and they usually were rights) it walled all the way to the

tynemouth: bRRRR.

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7/12/09 14:40:09



beach. Early standouts were the surfers who matched the power with their own power. Shipstern's man James Hick got stuck in, as did Billy Norways and J-Bay local Warren Tuck. They all made it through to the quarters. In round three, title contender Egor sat patiently but seemed to be in a rip and bombed out, along with Reubyn Ash who was looking for a perfect left when only rights were available. Now the battle for the title was a two-horse race, and when Russell pulled out of Stoksey’s heat due to illness the writing was on the wall. In the quarters the men stood up to be counted. Hick continued his run, Butler got through just behind him, the evergreen Spencer Hargraves used all his Sunset know-how to constantly be on the best waves and got through along with Nathan Phillips, the quiet assassin. Another Llantwit crooner, Mark Vaughan was solid. He found an elusive left and almost had the wave of the day with a forehand hack that set up a barrel, but just as he emerged he got clipped on the shoulder and went down. Still, he had done enough to get into the semi-final, with Saffa Chris Schnitzer. Stokesy made it through behind Reubin Pearce, but it was bad news for Micah Lester who had to be carried from the water after losing it on his first wave and pulling his ankle. Semi-final number one was an epic, with four surfers going toe-to-toe in clean and heaving halftide Fistral. Spencer surfed the perfect heat — wave selection, outsize turns, speed, power and flow — but Nathan stole the show with one turn that made the whole beach give a collective gasp. The judges called it the most savage turn they had seen all year. The way was blocked for Butts and Hick, and the loss meant that Stoksey had already done enough to ready his hairdo for the crown. Freed up, Stoksey creamed the second semi, getting one over Pearce who got the other final berth. The final was a one-man exhibition of power surfing — Spence and Nate seemed exhausted and Stoksey didn’t care, so Reubin Pearce climatically tore apart the rights to combo everyone and do the job he had set out to achieve — the defending champion wasn’t going to hand over the title lying down. —Ester Spears RESULTS: 1. Reubin Pearce 2. Alan Stokes 3. Spencer Hargreaves 4. Nathan Phillips.




above and right: russell showed his class in the small tynemouth surf.

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7/12/09 14:43:14


mike searle

Along with jeans and trainers, the plaid shirt has been the staple diet of surfers since the ‘70s. Thankfully it’s been given a new injection of cool this winter. Here’s a selection of what’s on offer.

Wear Plaid!

Volcom Invade Long Sleeve Shirt £46.99

billabong plaid shirt £50

Quiksilver Formine Flannel Shirt Fluro Red £44.99

Rip Curl Jacquard Check Shirt £55

nike6 Road Dog Flannel Shirt £40.00

O’Neill Winter Park Shirt £49.99

animal Stanton £54.99

Vans AV Drag Slim Flannel Shirt £40

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carve surfing magazine


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Martin Mynne, Badlands wonderland. Well, for two days this decade anyway. Photo: Farscapes



Fistral. Yeah, I know. Didn’t think it barrelled did you? Photo: Andy Ford

Still pumping! Not much else to say. Overall probably the most consistent 18 months for over a decade.

A Welsh wedge. Photo: The Gill

Lloyd Cole, Langland. Photo: The Gill

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Martin Black, St Ives. Photo courtesy Martin Black The Reef, Boscombe. Photo: Gary Knights

Porthleven fury. This was just the inside section. Photo: Alan Jorgenson.

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Louis // Strandhill, Ireland Photo: strand123

Unidentified // California Photo: sessionclips

Ben Skinner // Polzeath, Cornwall Photo: steve

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Unidentified // Fiastral, Cornwall Photo: geofftydeman

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/117 out there

Newquay Boardriders Surf Club are having a massive fundraiser at the Koola Club on 19 December. Mitch Corbett says, “The work that needs to be carried out to revamp the Newquay Boardriders HQ on Fistral Beach is one of the most important steps forward for the future of the club.” The party has a neon theme and includes a raffle and The Sea playing a one-off gig.

traffic accident. He lost an arm and a leg and suffered numerous other injuries. His friends have been busy fund-raising for him, and have created a nude surfing calendar shot at local beaches. When Darren was told about the calendar he insisted that half the money raised should go to Help for Heroes. Calendars can be bought from Down The Line and Gul retail stores for £10.

If you’re looking to go on a surf and snowboard break this winter, check out Boardingmania in Hossegor. It’s a new camp which provides Europe’s only snow and surf packages from December

Bay Surf in Scarborough are pleased to announce they now have a full range of new custom boards from top South African shaper Clayton Niennaber, including Travis Logie and Ricky Basnett Pro models. Check the new website: www.vibesurfshop.

through to April. That’s three days of surfing and three days of snowboarding and it’s only two and a half hours from the beach to the pistes! Check out the details of this and other offers at www. Lewis Clinton, the 2009 UKPST Junior Champion is now being sponsored by Monster Energy. Switch-Foot exhibition, being held at the Trent Gallery in Newcastle from 19 December to 29 January, deals with how the Tynemouth community has been shaped by its landscape, the most important feature being the sea. See the website at page3.htm. A couple of months ago a 23-year-old man from The Lizard called Darren Copeman was horrifically injured in a

Groundswell, The UK Pro Surf Association and Chew TV are investigating the possibility of creating a dedicated web TV channel to promote junior surfing and will be helping to organise a competitive tour across the UK for junior surfers in 2010, which will be run by junior surfers. Young people will be producing all the video, image and text content for the new channel. Please email Josh Hughes ( if you want to be a part of this opportunity. Surfers Ian Holford and Tom Neal are planning to drive 4,000 miles from Plymouth to The Gambia in a 1991 VW Polo with 200,000 miles on the clock. They will give away surfboards to young children they meet on their rally through Europe and then West Africa, raising funds for ShelterBox. If you donate over £2 then you will automatically be entered into a free draw to win an Errant Surf Holiday to South Africa! See www.

surf-rally. The new Future Fins Trees are now in store and allow customers to try before they buy. Check out the new Clay Marzo fins, created for medium to heavyweight surfers who want to bust massive airs as well as carve serious power hacks. Check to find out which fins will suit you and where you can test them.

Surfers Against Sewage campaigners and volunteers fronted a march of 50,000 people against climate change at Stop Climate Chaos, The Wave march on 5 December. Marching around the streets of London, The Wave called for strong climate change commitments from world leaders at the UN Climate Summit in Copenhagen. SAS campaigners wore wetsuits, carried surfboards and had their faces painted blue for the march. The surfers started at the front line of the march in Grosvenor Square and lead the event to Parliament. SAS, who are members of the Stop Climate Chaos coalition, joined together with many other NGOs in calling on world leaders to implement targets to limit global warming to a maximum increase of two degrees Celsius. This is achievable and will limit some of the devastating impacts climate change is threatening.

Gabe Davies won the Quiksilver La Vaca Gigante big wave event in France on 14 November in 15-foot waves. The spot ‘La Vaca’ or ‘The Cow’ breaks 400 yards out to sea, off a rocky coastline beside a rural Cantabrian cattle farm. Armed with surfboards up to 12´6˝, the 15 invited surfers competed in a four-hour final. Gabe claimed ‘Best Surfer’, with the judges deciding he took off deeply and critically enough on a series of solid set waves to claim the top prize. He told us more: “The reef is out beyond Santander – I asked Oscar Garcia, main local and contest director, where the wave was numerous times, hoping to get a freesurf in during the three-month waiting period. He told me there is no way to describe it – it’s hard to find, there is no GPS, road markings nearby or anything. It’s basically off the back of a really exposed coastline in fields behind a cow farm. He found the spot by walking the coastline on a monster day. It’s mainly a big takeoff, but it really jacks and shifts around. It was difficult to line up

with, so being in position for the sets was hard in itself, as it was the first time I’d even seen the spot. I saw David Echague take a great wave that looked Waimea-esque. “The format was discussed for ages on the morning of the event. Two semi’s then a final was the initial plan, but with worries about the tide, they decided on blasting everyone in for four hours. The theory was everyone would have the same chance to catch waves and face the same changes in the tide and wind. It’s funny, I’d never even heard of the event or the spot before being invited to compete about 10 days prior to the start of the waiting period. “I was riding an 8´10˝ Rory board which had been shaped in 1995, based on a Dick Brewer shape. It was the shortest board in the lineup but allowed me later take-offs and a more critical line, I think. Everyone else was on boards around the 10-foot mark, with one Basque nutcase on a 12´6˝ lead-weighted supertanker! “I surfed for just over three hours. I got a couple of critical late drops and scored a couple of the bigger set waves, but it’s tricky knowing what’s going on in an event like that as you are all basically freesurfing really big waves, sharing the experience but with a coupe of cheques dangling at the end of the day like carrots!”

carve surfing magazine 117

mickey smith


free dvd Lives of the Artists Lives Of The Artists In snow, in surf, in music – indeed, in life – the same rules apply; the rules of engagement, the rules of mind, body and soul, the ‘Rules of Art’. There are no easy rides. Suffering goes with the territory, with the terrain, and those who want it most must accept the rules. They must bear the deepest scars. And they know it, too. They accept it. They are scars that look different but feel the same, a burden they willingly bear, the gates of hell carried on their backs.

The snowboarder, the surfer, the

musician – each is the master of his own realm, but they are all artists, men driven to extremes, consumed by that singular desire to leave their mark on the world, to carve their own scars deep into its skin.

Lives of the Artists is about those people. To most, they are different men of different ages from different walks of life. But look past the surface details, look closer, and you’ll see the same thing. You’ll see that they’re not so different after all. Lives of the Artists. Coming Soon.

Plus all kinds of other wicked stuff On sale: 15 february

and finally... /120 photos: pascual

“Fast hollow waves...

and the odd tiger shark!” Scott Eastwood jetted off to a small island in the mid Atlantic in November for a winter hol with his girlfriend. Nice hotel, blazing sunshine, reefbreak straight out the front. “The swell came up and it was between four and eight feet every day for about a week. The reef in front our hotel was was near enough world class I’d say. Really nice waves, fast and hollow.” A couple of days later, while loitering around the nearby harbour, Scott watched the local fishermen haul a pair of tiger sharks onto the pier. “The biggest was probably around eight foot. Really chunky too. I was thinking, ‘Holy SHIT!’ But I guess they must catch them all the time there, ‘cos the other fisherman on the pier barely even batted an eyelid. The kids were quite interested, they poked them for a while...then just carried on jumping off the pier right where the fishermen gut their catch!” So did he have a nice image of that toothy grimace in the back of his mind the next time he paddled out? “I tried not to think about it. I made sure I never dangled my feet or pissed in my wettie. But I suppose if you're on the menu there's not much you can do about it!” –CP

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CARVE Surfing Magazine  

Carve Surfing Magazine is Britains leading surfing magazine.

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