Pop the Prosecco!
One of the most well-loved surfers in the entire world, and 2001’s champion, CJ Hobgood has led a storied life. Born a twin, becoming the model for the NSSA logo, Rookie of the Year on the 1999 Association of Surfing Professional’s main tour then winning it all in 2001, Clifton James has lived, lived and lived again.
And now, in mere days, he is set to join brother Damien in the East Coast Surfing Hall of Fame. A party will fete his induction January 5th at 5:00pm at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando as part of the famed Surf Expo (tickets here).
In case you are a younger girl an ill-informed, you can learn all about his accomplishments and travails in the award-winning documentary And Two if by Sea.
Or you can listen to CJ shine on Dirty Water.
Florida Today describes CJ’s journey thusly:
Swaying palm trees in Bali, thunderous waves in Oahu and Champagne toasts off the coast of France. It was all part of the jet-setting lifestyle for professional surfers CJ Hobgood and Danny Melhado.
Of course, along with the glamor, there were bumps, bruises and broken bones, not to mention the thousands of miles and hundreds of days spent away from home, hauling a quiver of surfboards through airports, and eating exotic, yet strange-looking, foods.
Now, oceans apart, their legacy connects again Wednesday evening when both South Brevard legends are inducted into the 25th edition of the East Coast Surfing Hall of Fame.
CJ adds, “I don’t know if this ever pops up on your radar when you’re growing up. I think surfing was still kind of counter-culture back then; maybe you’d get like one mention on ‘SportsCenter,’ but I couldn’t imagine (what it became).”
The greatest show ever.