surf lakes
A Surf Lake license costs $A500,000, which buys you exclusive rights spanning an area covering a million people. You want something for, say, Sydney with its five million people? Gonna cost $2.5 million if you want to shut the door on other Surf Lake biz's. 

Revealed: Billionaires line up to buy Occy’s wavepool licenses!

Oil money hot for Queensland wave tank!

Earlier today, the company Surf Lakes released a presser reporting that following “the success of full-scale prototype testing” licensee enquiries have been “flooding in from around the globe en-masse.”

There are six projects on the boil, says Surf Lakes, despite the breakdown of machinery during the initial testing. Two in the USA (a site in southern California, which is going to be a country-club style joint and Arizona, which is going to be a commercial operation), Sao Paulo in Brazil, somewhere just out of Perth, London and Spain.

All companies are doing their due diligence, says Surf Lakes, with the two American pools “ready to go” and another site “not far off.” Construction will begin in 2019, doors open 2020.

What was interesting when I spoke to Surf Lakes’ media prez Wayne Dart was his offhand remark, “There’s a lot of money in the world, let’s put it that way. We’ve had conversations with billionaires who are ready to drop as many million dollars as they need to into their thing, to create a private theme park almost. That’s from Europe to the US to the Middle East, where one billionaire wants to put it in the ocean where the waves are flat using reclaimed land. Guys that want to have it for themselves and their mates. Which is a pretty cool thing.”

A Surf Lake license costs $A500,000, which buys you exclusive rights spanning an area covering a million people. You want something for, say, Sydney with its five million people? Gonna cost $2.5 million if you want to shut the door on other Surf Lake biz’s.

Build cost? Surf Lakes says the ball-park figure is $20 million. That’ll buy you the giant plunger and a concrete lake. Land, cute cabanas and yoga teepees, whatever, is up to you to find and buy.

And a warranty?

Readers will remember the giant plunger buckled during its great reveal while operating at only fifty percent capacity. Surf Lakes says the failure was a manufacturing fault, say a new part is being built and that the Yeppoon prototype will be operational by the end of January 2019.

And, yes, a warranty card comes with your $20 million pool.

“There’s a variety of warranties, it’s a pretty big document,” says Dart.

As for the promised “eight-foot” waves, Dart says, from a surfer’s perspective it’ll be “a solid four foot.”

“The promise is have Occy standing tall in a barrel,” he says. “That’s what we promised at the launch and that’s what we have to deliver.”

Ed Sloane/WSL
Ed Sloane/WSL

The greatest mystery in sports: World champ Tyler Wright disappears from tour, nobody asks why!

Come inside for the big reveal!

Today the World Surf League released an interview with 2 x world champion Tyler Wright as to why she has been largely absent from this 2018 edition of the tour. I had heard rumors that this was coming down the pike and was very excited to learn some truths. The Wrights, Owen and Tyler, have both been plagued by extremely mysterious physical ailments over the past few years. Sensible reasons/causes etc. were never readily served up and so I was very excited, assuming all, or at least some, would be revealed today but must say after reading the just released interview feel that I too have contracted chronic fatigue.

Maybe it is the looming turkey? Tryptophan overdose etc? I don’t know but enough about me. Here’s Tyler…

WSL: You’ve officially pulled out of the final event of the season – the Beachwaver Maui Pro – and we haven’t seen you in a jersey since Uluwatu. Can you explain what went down this year?

Tyler Wright: I actually got sick in July, during the J-Bay event. I had gone to Africa early to go surf and prepare. I love J-Bay and had gone the year before just to surf, plus I thought I could get some waves before the crew got there. So I was happy to get a few surfs in.

I first started feeling ill when I went on an overnight safari. My head was on fire and so was my body. I’d never felt like that before and I actually called Mikey [Tyler’s Brother] who said he thought I needed to go to the doctor. I didn’t want to believe him so I called Jessi [WSL Deputy Commissioner] and told her how I felt and she was like, ‘please drive to the hospital’. Mikey got the medical team organized and then we went from there. I had to go to Port Elizabeth where I was admitted through Emergency.

WSL: Have you tried to compete since?

Tyler Wright: I actually was going to try and compete at the Surf Ranch Pro because I thought of all the events on the calendar that was the one that I could manage myself the best at, with the set schedule, set number of waves, etc. I even flew to California for it, that’s how convinced I was.

I came early with the idea that I would go and see Mark Kozuki [California based Physical Therapist] because he has always fixed me, and then go up to Lemoore for the training days prior. I went and saw Kozuki the day I landed and then I literally changed my flight for the next day and flew home. I spent one night in California.

Read the rest here!

Bombshell: World Surf League CEO denies calling equal pay “an abuse of the #MeToo movement!”

An explosive allegation roils professional surfing!

The World Surf League received very much press, deservedly, in September when it became one of the first organizations in professional sports to equalize pay across male and female divisions. Of course you read the many stories. Of course you read the effusive coverage in ESPN, Forbes, The New York Times etc. Deservedly. What a statement moment for the League. Even better than one of its stars getting brushed by a shark while being live streamed in South Africa.

The WSL’s CEO Ms. Sophie Goldschmidt said at the time:

“This is a huge step forward in our long-planned strategy to elevate women’s surfing and we are thrilled to make this commitment as we reveal our new 2019 schedule. This is the latest in a series of actions the League has undertaken to showcase our female athletes, from competing on the same quality waves as the men, to better locations, and increased investment and support.”

Bravo. Except… today it was revealed in Deadspin that there might maybe have been some different opinions behind the scenes, specifically as it related to equal pay and Mavericks. Let’s dive in!

(San Mateo County Harbor Commissioner and member of the Committee for Equity in Women’s Surfing) Sabrina Brennan said that in several meetings in the lead-up to the WSL’s September decision, the organization routinely claimed that any discrepancies in pay were a response to the smaller pool of women. Despite Goldschmidt’s effusive public statements in support of the change in pay status, emails provided by Brennan show that both Goldschmidt and Graham Stapleberg, WSL executive vice president and general manager of events, had previously been opposed.

According to Brennan and CEWS member Karen Tynan, in a July 23 meeting, Goldschmidt used the term “poor performance” to describe the women’s showing at the Pe’ahi Challenge, despite Paige Alms’s victory in what Surfer magazine described as a “well-deserved win” within a contest that “saw arguably the best top-to-bottom surfing that has ever gone down at a big-wave venue.” At that same meeting, Brennan said that pay equity was more important now than ever. Brennan and Tynan said that Goldschmidt, who became the first female CEO of the WSL in July 2017, made “thinly veiled threats” about not holding the Mavericks event if the request for equal prize money persisted, and called it “an abuse of the #MeToo movement.”

My old pal G. Stapleberg back in the news for the first time since tasting Eddie Rothman’s open hand (buy here)! It makes my heart soar, to be honest, as I forgot entirely that he was still kicking around. Remember The Grahmmies? I will bring them back this year, don’t worry, don’t weep. And don’t worry Graham… I’ll bring you back too!

But back to the story at hand. I’m really trying to understand the context, any context, where Ms. Goldschmidt would make thinly veiled threats about not holding Mavericks and calling the push for equal pay there “an abuse of the #MeToo movement.” You know me. You know that I would like to believe in the relative incompetence of the League creating that context but… to be honest, I can’t even think of a slap-drunk Graham Stapelberg saying something like that.

Ms. Goldschmidt, for her part, denied the whole thing, releasing the following statement:

Those claims are wholly inaccurate and actually the opposite is true, as shown by WSL’s actions in recent years where we have invested in the right to run a competition at Mavericks for the good of the athletes, women as well as men, and the Big Wave Tour in general. We will continue to do everything we can to celebrate Mavericks as the iconic location and wave that it deserves to be, and the athletes that surf it.

I wish someone would employ me to write denials. I would do a much, much better job.


Vicious: Man shoots and kills dolphin in Manhattan Beach, California!

Oh cruel world...

When Erik Logan’s away the sociopaths will play. Is that how the old saying goes? Something like that anyhow, and once again proves true for the World Surf League’s President-elect of Media, Content and WSL Studios is there in Fiji having the monster time of his young life and his hometown of Manhattan Beach, California has devolved into utter chaos. Unspeakable chaos and let us turn to the New York Post for more.

A dolphin was found shot dead on a California beach — and an animal rescue group is now offering a reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the gunman.

The dolphin’s remains were found on Manhattan Beach about 20 miles south of Los Angeles, El Segundo-based Marine Animal Rescue wrote on Facebook on Friday.

A necropsy later revealed that the sea mammal had been killed by a gunshot wound, the animal rescue group said.

“There is NO excuse for such brutality against these beautiful animals,” the group wrote in its post.

The animal rescue added it will offer a reward of $5,000 if a tipster comes forward with information that leads to the arrest and conviction of the person who shot the dolphin.

Have you ever heard of such a thing? A dolphin getting shot and killed? I don’t even think such atrocities occurred during Rwandan genocide (and I know about The Cove and don’t approve but ain’t the Japanese eating the dolphins? Not that I approve…).

Erik? If you’re reading, I know that you have been looking forward to #kampkalama for months and months and, by the looks of it, are truly having the monster time of your young life but Manhattan Beach needs you like it has never needed you before. I don’t want to lay this shot dead dolphin at your feet but I’m having real trouble not laying this shot dead dolphin at your feet.

Come home? Help me help you and just come home. Manhattan Beach turns its lonely eyes to you.

Revealed: Why surf funnies from Wilbur Kookmeyer to the WSL’s Get Sent! fail miserably!

Welcome to peak funny!

Do you recall some… I don’t know… six months ago (?) when the World Surf League, based in Santa Monica, California but represented globally through a series of pay-to-play pimp schemes rolled out their comedy show Get Sent! inspired by Instagram bloopers?

I barely do either and thought they cancelled it though a quick search reveals it is still alive. I wrote a little something uninspired and embarrassing about it then (read here) but was quickly reprimanded by none other than Chris Cote who informed me that the principals “Chad” and “JT” were genuinely funny.

A quick Google search revealed that Chris was totally right. Chad and JT are actually hilarious playing surf schlock to a non-surf audience.

But their meme show falls flat and why? Even with the power of millions of World Surf League Instagram fans it has failed to garner more than 8000 followers and how?

Well, I’ll tell you. Our surfing world, with everything it encompasses, is difficult/impossible to satirize back to a surf audience because everything we do is inherently satirical. From waxing surfboards to putting on black pantsuits to getting furious at men and women, in their black pantsuits, trying to dance next to us in the ocean while dolphins look on, chuckling.

Surfing is ridiculous and I think most surfers, or at least most surfers who have accidentally gone all in on an OK hobby (me, you, every person here) recognizes it as such. Fun, of course, but ridiculous. Very much like Alec Baldwin playing Donald J. Trump. It’s fine, I guess, but Trump does Trump so so much better. It is why @KookOfTheDay @KookSlams etc. work brilliantly. They simply hold a mirror up and allow us to laugh at ourselves instead of attempting some sort of heavy-handed schtick.

Or to laugh with Erik Logan.

Can any comedy bit outshine the World Surf League’s President-elect of Content, Media and WSL Studios shredding an @infinity_sup, wearing @outerknown 4-way boardies by @kellyslater whilst on his month long Fijian vacation?


It’s as funny as it gets. Funnier than me, you, every person here because Elo is also holding a giant paddle.