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Beach Grit

Introducing: The 2018 WSL judges!

Chas Smith

by Chas Smith

How well do you know the men that hang professional surfing in the balance?

I will tell you what, the 2018 World Surf League’s Championship Tour kickoff yesterday was fantastic. It showcased drama, skill, new blood and old hands but most of all Steve “Longtom” Shearer’s jump back into the saddle. If I’ve written it once, I’ve written it a thousand times… a day of professional surfing doesn’t end until Longtom says it does. I have no doubt these years will be looked back upon with wide-eyed wonderment by the future’s children. They will read The Collected Works of Professional Surf Contest Coverage 2016-2019, skipping every collected work except his and they will marvel.

Longtom, anyhow, ended yesterday’s offering by pointing to the fact Ben Dunn is now a surf judge and has been for five years.

Ben Dunn. What in the world? And I decided then and there to go on a mission to uncover each and every WSL CT judge. It would be hard work, seeing as the League likes to keep them sequestered but I was hungry and driven. Nothing but nothing would stand in the way of true, hard-nose surf journalism and…

…oh. The WSL published a whole story about the judges, complete with first day of school pictures weeks ago and Tinder profile question/answers. It is all quite brilliant and go here to see but one thing was left off. Which sort of music each judge listens to. Should we speculate together? I’ll start.

Head Judge: Pritamo Ahrendt (40)

Maybe listens to: LCD Soundsystem

Priority judge: Iain Buchanan (56)

Maybe listens to: Bon Scott era AC/DC

Senior judge: Ettiene Buys (41)

Maybe listens to: Vintage Kenny G

Judge: Luis Dantas (44)

Maybe listens to: Antonio Carlos Jobim

Judge: Mikel Zalakain (41)

Maybe listens to: Fleetwood Mac

Judge: Ben Lowe (38)

Maybe listens to: Powderfinger

Judge: Luiz Fernando (44)

Maybe listens to: Shakira

Judge: Luke Redding (31)

Maybe listens to: Young Thug

Now it’s your turn!

But first… this one goes out to Ben Dunn. Welcome to the show!