Kelly Slater, still the biggest draw of the World Surf League, is allegedly not even in Australia!
The sun is shining, the birds are singing and the professionals are almost surfing. Oh the thrill of a new year on the World Surf League’s Championship Tour! The Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast at the famed Snapper Rocks kicks off in either two days or tomorrow depending on where you live/when you read this and there is new blood (Jack Freestone, etc.) and old blood (Taj Burrow etc.) and hot blood (Joel Parkinson) and missing blood (Kelly Slater).
Yes! You read that right! In a wild turn of events, a rumor is floating on those New South Welsh pre-cancerous winds that Kelly Slater, eleven time world champion, friend of chia, enemy of genetic modification, is not currently on the Gold Coast and maybe not planning on coming at all.
Apparently, and from a source on the ground, all the surfers were required to report to the event site yesterday. And all the surfers did. All except Kelly Slater who was said to still be in Hawaii.
Of course and of course, The Inertia‘s hero is known for his tricks, for his mind games, for his sleight of hand. And of course and of course he holds all the cards. If he didn’t, say, follow protocol and instead showed up wearing one of Occy’s muumuus instead of an officially sanctioned WSL singlet (for sale in the gift store) five minutes into his heat do you not think event organizers would let him paddle out? Of course and of course they would!
Kelly Slater is a draw. He is a world title threat (not really but let’s pretend). He is a wonderful surfer and the powers know it.
So will he show up? Our source is on “Kelly Watch” and you will know as soon as we do. But in the meantime, let’s read a little more Zach Weisberg:
That’s not to say we don’t take our lickings internally, discuss and make adjustments where appropriate, but we thought it might be a constructive initiative to acknowledge outrage when it happens, attempt to contextualize it and provide insight from our perspective, and give you, our trusty, loyal readers, access to our logic in how and why we do what we do. Contrary to what you might believe, we don’t really want to kill all that you (and we) love. Not yet.
The Inertia staff take their lickings internally? Wow!