Inspirational: English surfers slay “The Widow Maker” on motorized surfboards!

True descendants from Arthur's Round Table!

Kai Lenny eat your heart out. Yesterday, as the cold mists hovered around Albion, some brave English surfers, direct descendants of Arthur’s Round Table, strapped on their helmets, readied their steeds and headed out to do battle. Their foe, a monster that had risen from the deep. A mutant that hadn’t been seen in those parts for years. Its name was Cribbar but it was called”The  Widow Maker” and greatly feared by all.

By all except some brave English surfers. True knights like Sir DrunkenAngel of Tintagel and Sir Jeff of East Sussex and let’s turn to the broadsheet Corwall Live for more.

A big wave surfer has spoken of the ultimate thrill in tackling monster waves at the world-famous Cribbar break off the coast of Newquay .

On Friday hundreds of spectators gathered on the headland to watch fearless surfers tackle the huge break .

Also known as the Widow Maker, the Cribbar is created by a reef off Towan Head and has gained a worldwide reputation as one of the few major big wave spots in UK waters.

The rare phenomenon happens just a few times a year when the weather and tides come together to create massive and spectacular waves in excess of twenty feet high.

The Cribbar appeared thanks to a combination of light, offshore winds, and a westerly swell.

Due to the size and speed of the wave surfers are either towed into it by a jet-ski or use motorised ‘jet surf’ boards.

The boards weigh a mere 15 kg and are extremely nimble and responsive with the straps and footpads made of specialised memory foam to connect the riders to the boards.

Like Swami's only colder!
Like Swami’s only colder!

One of those in the water on Friday was big wave surfer Jeff Scott who travelled all the way down from East Sussex to try his luck.

Jeff had only recently returned from surfing Nazaré in Portugal, the home of the largest waves ever surfed, when he heard the news that the Cribbar was set to go off.

Speaking to Cornwall Live, Jeff said: “I’m aching from head to toe and feel like I’ve been hit by a train or three.

“I’ve been wanting to ride the Cribbar for a long time. I’ve been wind surfing in Cornwall for 10 years and always wondered how I’d tackle it.

“It’s the ultimate in big wave surfing in the UK and I woke up to a text on Thursday morning saying that it’s a go. For 18 months I’ve been keeping an eye on both Nazaré and the Cribbar and now I’ve surfed them both within a few weeks. It’s been epic.”

Jeff, 40, described how he arrived in Cornwall at around 5pm on Thursday and even managed a 45 minute ‘warm-up’ session on the jet surf at Godrevy before nightfall.

He added: “The jet surf uses the speed of the board and the power of the wave and gives what are usually unwanted waves a home. It’s quiet but capable of getting up to speeds of 35 miles-per-hour and can get you out of trouble if a wave is closing out around you.

“I’m not getting any younger so my big wave clock is ticking and the jet surf was a way of helping me get those waves. They’re expensive and not to everyone’s tastes.”

Motorized steeds that weigh a mere 15 kg, are extremely nimble and responsive with straps and footpads made of specialised memory foam.

Eat your whole damn heart right out Kai Lenny.

Opportunity: Get hit by a leashless board in Byron Bay, hire lawyer, get (maybe) rich!

Go surfing at The Pass, make easy money…

You might’ve heard about trouble rustling among the palm trees of that #vanlife and retro-fab logger paradise, Bryon Bay.

Loggers, see, the authentic ones with hair bowl-cut in the manner of superhero George Greenough and dragging their immense craft tail-down across the sand like weak children (ironic), don’t dig wearing leashes.

The issue reached peaked a year or so ago after a few faces had been rearranged by leashless logs at the Pass, described here, as “the most dangerous surf spot on the east coast of Australia – if you rank danger by chance of collision occasioning  actual board and bodily harm. For the everyday surfer it is a write off. A world-class wave buried under a blanket of narcissistic greed. A sad indictment of the human race’s propensity to make too much out of a good thing.” 

One prominent MP, Ian Cohen, who made a name for himself in 1985 protesting nuclear-capable US warships in Sydney Harbour by hitching a ride on the bow of a destroyer with his board, says he won’t go near the Pass without a helmet and wants a sort of water-born police force. 

Pussy, and fuck that, you fascist. Who needs more cops?

Anyway, salvation is at hand and a win, I think, for everybody, at least in the short term.

Local solicitors Somerville Laundry Lomax have advertised their services should you cop a board in the head, body, whatever, and you want to roast the person responsible like a pecan flambé in court.

In an advertisement in the local newspaper, The Echo, SLL ask: Have you been injured by a surfer whose board was not restrained by a legroom? If so, and you know the details of the surfer at fault, call etc.

I ain’t no lawyer but the sentence “Have you been injured by a surfer whose board was not restrained” seems a little off.

I’ve never been hit by a surfer and I believe the essence of recent complaints was that loose surfboards were the prob not the pilot who, you would imagine, is swimming somewhere out the back while his nine-six pinballs through the kids and grand mammies on plastic floatation devices.

Anyway, sounds like they’ll jump on your case in a no-win, no-fee sorta deal.

Call ’em.

Confusion: Why did World Surf League stop at 1976? Why not “EST. 2500 B.C.”?

The oldest association on earth!

So we all know that our World Surf League was not established in 1976. The world’s greatest living surf journalist, Nick Carroll, spelled it out very clearly in the comments just yesterday eve and I’ll reprint here, for you, since it should have been a post all by itself.

Shall we list the acronyms for them, one by one?

1. IPSA, formed in 1968/9 by various scions of the Outrigger Canoe Club who thought that because the Duke Classic had prize money, they would soon be running a 13-event world pro surfing tour. Sadly this did not eventuate, and the IPSA kinda disappeared around 1972.

2. IPS. Private company formed in 1975/6 by Fred Hemmings to administer a world rankings system. First known as “International Professional Surfers”, changed in 1978 to “International Professional Surfing” so as to dissuade the surfers from thinking they had ownership of it.

3. ASP. Non-profit association formed by Ian Cairns in late 1982. Shared ownership structure involving surfers and event promoters. Forced a takeover of the world rankings system from IPS in 1983. Much stuff then commenced for many years until

4. ZoSea Media took control of ASP in 2013, re-established it as a private sports management operation, and eventually changed the branding to World Surf League in 2015.

World Surf League, est. 2015.

Ok. But we know what Dirk Ziff means, right? He means, “I own professional surfing. I bought it for free and in so doing own its history too.”

Great. He is co-Waterman of the Year so can do whatever he wants BUT why didn’t he go all the way back into the mists of time. To Peru in 2500 B.C. where the first brave fisherman invented surfing? There is no doubt they had some sort of competitive aspect tied into the wave riding. So… yeah. Why not World Surf League, est. 2500 B.C.?

Can you give me a good reason?

Revealed: At least ten nations to be represented in surfing at the 2020 Tokyo Games!

But which ten?

The 2020 Olympiad, which will take place in Tokyo and feature surfing for the first time in Olympic history, is around the corner. Time flies when we’re having fun and oh how we’ve been having fun. Haven’t we?


Haven’t we?

Well, the Olympics and I don’t care and you don’t care but we might care next summer so let’s examine the qualification process as just explained by the Adventure Sports Network:

Here’s the deal: There will be a total of 40 surfers competing in the 2020 Olympic Games – 20 men and 20 women. Each country can only bring a total of four surfers – two men and two women. This ensures that at least 10 surfing nations will get an opportunity to perform on the big stage.

The lion’s share of the competitors will come via the World Surf League (WSL). The top 10 men and top eight women at the end of the 2019 WSL Championship Tour will be eligible for the Games. The tour kicks off in Australia in April, and ends in Hawaii in December.

Based on their placing, four men and four women will emerge from the 2019 ISA World Surfing Games, which takes place at Kisakihama Beach in Japan from Sept. 7 – 15. This will also be a trial run for the Olympics and all Olympic hopefuls are required to surf in it, so expect to hear a lot of hype when the contest rolls around this fall.


The “…at least 10 surfing nations…” bit seems fun and let’s make a bet on which 10 surfing nations will be represented. I’m going with:


The United States





South Africa




Runner up: Senegal (due the inspiring work of Black Girls Surf at world’s best training wave in Venice Beach, California.)

Your turn.

Breaking: World Surf League has new logo and new longboard tour director!

It's morning in Santa Monica!

Don’t look now but the World Surf League is making good moves. Money moves even. Oh you know I’m very first in line to land a kick right in those totalitarian guts but… lately there’s nothing I can do except applaud. Have I gone weak or are you with me?

First, there was Pat O’Connell’s hiring. The Endless Summer II’s second most engaging star is a wonderful choice as commissioner mostly because he has a sense of humor about water dancing. He loves, like you, like me, but also thinks it’s funny, like you, like me and imagine that for a moment.

A sense of humor in Santa Monica’s High Castle.

Second, the League has jettisoned the ugliest logo in professional pastime history and replaced it with a chic, minimalist, Brooklyn Nets-esque design. It ain’t bad. It might even be nice and, if boozed enough, I’d consider getting it tattooed on my reconstituted shoulder.

Third, Devon Howard was just named the revamped longboard tour director and let’s read the press release.

Today, the World Surf League (WSL) announced updates to its longboard schedule with the newly structured Longboard Tour, a four-event longboard circuit. Timeless lines drawn by surfing’s most graceful longboarders will be on full display in the revamped Longboard Tour that will crown the World Longboard Champions at the end of the season.

The Longboard Tour will run events in Noosa, Queensland, Australia; Galicia in Spain; and Long Island in New York. These three events will be in addition to the Taiwan Open World Longboard Championships at the end of the year. The Longboard Tour will accompany the existing Longboard Qualifying Series events, which will now transition to Longboard Regional events.

Devon Howard has been appointed Longboard Tour Director and will oversee all of the WSL’s longboard events working closely with all areas of the WSL. Howard’s influential style has had an inspiring impact on surf culture, but more importantly, he will bring an impressive resume with a litany of skill sets and an intimate knowledge of surfing that will play a key role in the success of this Tour.

I hate longboarding but I love Devon Howard.

What’s happening? Have I caught Stockholm Syndrome?