"I am definitely not with American Wave Machines," he says.
Here’s a hot piece straight off the wire. The Hawaiian surfer Cheyne Magnusson, who singlehandedly altered the course of aerial surfing at BSR cable park in Waco, has been signed to design and set-up a pool at the old Wet ‘n’ Wild site in Palm Springs, California.
The cat was allowed out of its bag, briefly, in an Instagram post from another California-based Hawaiian, Kalani Robb, who has also been hired for the build.
Oowee, do it look familiar?
It’s the same pool that was used in the opening sequences of North Shore, a film from 1987 that tells the fictional tale of Rick Kane, a boy who learns to surf in a wave pool and then attempts to transpose his skills to Pipeline with mostly good results.
When I called Cheyne, who is currently living at Santa Clarita, thirty-five miles north-east of Los Angeles with his daughter and pregnant wife, he said “I’m not supposed to be be talking to you yet.”
Cheyne then asked if the Asthon-Chas sock at Surf Expo was real, which I explained it was.
“The boys were frothing. Game on, dude,” said Cheyne, adding, “Everyone loves a good bitch slap here and there.”
Are you still with American Wave Machines and therefore does this mean you’re going to use AWM tech?
“I am…not… with American Wave Machines,” says Cheyne. “I don’t wanna bad mouth anyone but we don’t see eye to eye on certain things. Mostly, what these wave parks can do and hold for the future of surfing. They’re not just a business platform to make money. They’re an important part of a sport, a culture and it’s multi-generational. People dedicate their lives to surfing. It’s not just an attraction, a water park. I feel a responsibility to present it in the right way, to be as true to the culture as I possibly can.”
I say, without you, Waco would’ve been another crummy pool. It only got good when your freckled hands started pulling the levers to create the best wedge anyone had seen anywhere.
“Thanks for recognising that,” says Cheyne. “We took a massive roll of the dice and leap of faith to go out there. You know, the hard part that we’re facing at this juncture is that the people who develop these technologies, they’re brilliant, unbelievable engineers, hydrodynamics, aerospace, whatever, they’re really smart. They read a lot of books and so on. But then you have those guys colliding with us, people who’ve dedicated their lives to surfing. You can be the smartest person in the world and you can develop these machines but you need surfers, people who’ve looked at the ocean their whole lives, to know how to… move… the water.”
Cheyne says he’s been to the Palm Springs site “a few times” and that he’ll be able to loosen his lips a little more in around a month.
“But we’ve definitely crossed some milestones to get to the point where Kalani can put out a post,” says Cheyne. “It’s a real deal.”
(Thanks to Mike Klein @Central Texas Surf Club for the lead.)