“Fernando Aguerre bought it. I went to Fed Ex and shipped it to his address in Cali. Haven’t seen it since.” Until now.
The 2001 world surfing champion Clifton James Hobgood, who claimed his title after the tour was abbreviated to five events following the coordinated suicide attacks by Wahabi Islamist terror group Al-Qaeda on the Pentagon in Virginia, the Capital building in Washington DC, and the World Trade Center complex in Manhattan, has revealed the location of his long-lost world title trophy.
Hobgood, who is forty-one, sold the precious cup for $US25,000, out of a goal of raising eighty k, to help fund the documentary And Two If By Sea, which tells the story of he and twin brother Damien’s ascent to sporting greatness.
“This journey into character and emotional transparency does mark a shift in surf film-making,” wrote Longtom in a review of the film, here, adding, “I like this new wave of revealing, authentic type of film, much, much more.”
Of the “accidental world title” at just twenty-two, writes Longtom, “His humility in struggling to accept the legitimacy of the Title is refreshing. The regret overlaid onto the achievement by Damo makes it more poignant. Damo was surfing Pipe when the Title was awarded at Sunset.”
“One of the perks you could get when we were crowdfunding the movie was the world title trophy for 25k,” Cliff told BeachGrit. “(ISA chief) Fernando Aguerre bought it. I went to Fed Ex and shipped it to his address in Cali. Haven’t seen it since.”
(Cliff elaborated a little more on Surfline a while back, “I told Dam, ‘Let’s sell my trophy! Let’s give away everything we have!’ Because [Indiegogo] is perk-based; that’s the way those things work. The idea is to give something away to let the people know that you’re invested on every level, like, ‘this is our baby and if you wanna help out and join our story, we will give you anything from our world.'”)
That was, until yesterday, when a sharp-eyed fan photographed the bauble in a repair shop and tagged Cliff.
“People kept commenting, ‘You gotta get it back’,” says Cliff, “But honestly I like that it’s floating in the free market!”