Medina (right) with Neymar Jr. (center) and volleyball gold medalist Bruno Rezende. @gabrielmedina

WSL again under siege after online sleuth claims Gabriel Medina was “robbed” of spot in world title showdown!

Little known glitch in the end-of-year points calculation dooms three-time world champ Medina.

The World Surf League, surfing’s governing body which is currently for sale if anyone wants the shrivelled grapes from that withered vine, is again under siege after an online sleuth claimed Gabriel Medina was “robbed” of a place on Finals Day at Lower Trestles.

You’ll remember in mid-August when, in rapidly deteriorating four-foot waves, surf fans fondled themselves into a state of near nervous collapse after Australian Jack Robinson muscled his way through Medina to win the Tahiti Pro and a spot on Finals Day.

Now, and via the shaper-centric podcast The Dust Up (episode, “What shit luck for Gabriel Medina”), John ‘Robbo’ Robertson reveals Medina’s place in the showdown was effectively stolen thanks to a little known glitch in the scoring system.

Correct me if I’m wrong and the old eyes do tend to glaze a little reading rule books, contracts and so on, but the old way of calculating the end of year ranking was to drop your two worst events and add up the result of, say, the other eight if it was a ten-event year. 

Robbo says, correct me if I’m wrong etc, that a surfer can drop one event in the first half, but not in the second, presuming they made the mid-year cut. Which means, it pays to come on relatively late in the season points wise. 

To wit, 

“Gabriel had a cracker first half of the year. Worst result was a 332o, a ninth maybe, and the back half of the year he had a shocker, worst result a 1330, a seventeenth at Rio and he had to keep it. That’s a 1990 points difference. The result (had he been able to throw away the 1330 not the 3320) would have taken him from sixth to fourth position in the ratings. Would’ve been in the top five. The only surfer who had a worst result in the back half of the year was Ethan and  Ethan’s was an injury.” 

Robbo gives a pretty good example of how the new way of calculating end of year points can go real bad. 

“Imagine if in the first events your worst result was a quarter-final. You’re top three in the world going into the back half the season. Going into the back half of the  season, you win two events…get injured and you miss the final three events. So the quarter-final is a throwaway.” 

Theoretically, and possibly, the surfer who dominated the year before tweaking their ankle or whatever misses Finals Day. 

Fascinating yes? 

Listen here, comes on real early in the poddy after the intro. 

Smith (foreground) on the way.
Smith (foreground) on the way.

Storm tested California surf journalist departs for New England in order to advise and direct as Hurricane Lee set to slam into region

Help on the way.

A California surf journalist is set to depart for New England, later today, in order to share advice and lend expertise to those living in the northeast, preparing themselves for Hurricane Lee.

The category 3 storm, maybe category 1 now, began its anticipated swing north, overnight, and is currently whipping Bermuda but will unleash upon northeastern America beginning tomorrow and lasting through the weekend.

CNN is reporting:

As of late Thursday morning, hurricane-force winds extend up to 90 miles from its center and tropical storm-force winds stretch for up to 310 miles, according to the hurricane center.

These strong winds will contribute to storm surge flooding up to 4 feet that could inundate parts of southeastern Massachusetts late Friday and Saturday. A storm surge watch has been issued for the area, including Cape Cod and Nantucket.

Heavy rainfall could pose an issue to already rain-drenched stretches of the Northeast, where saturated ground may be particularly susceptible to flash flooding. Lee’s heaviest rain will fall over portions of Maine Saturday, but states like New Hampshire, Massachusetts and Rhode Island are not completely in the clear.

While panic is, certainly, understandable for those living in Hurricane Lee’s projected path, they should be comforted knowing that Chas Smith, is on his way.

The 47-year-old has lived the vast majority of his life on America’s west coast, save stints in Papua New Guinea, Egypt, England and Australia, though had never experienced a hurricane until just three weeks ago when Hurricane Hilary plowed into Southern California.

While the region was gripped with fear and panic, Smith bravely set out for Catalina, an island just offshore, for an ill-advised sail odyssey with his two best friends. Though they were not allowed to moor in Avalon and were too hungry to overnight in nearby White’s Cove, the trio inspired by braving clouds in their return to Newport Beach where they dined on a butterleaf wedge salad, ceviche tostaditas, 22 oz bone-in ribeye and Atlantic lobster tail, all for sharing, at A Restaurant.

Though it rained later that night, the “100% success rate” in surviving a hurricane inspired.

Smith will share guidance when he arrives in Boston later this evening, then go on an advising and directing tour through New Hampshire and Vermont where he will show locals hoarding etiquette, sharing who to shame for being “irresponsible” and when plus providing tutorials on suffering rain while also, hopefully, dining on more Atlantic lobster tail.

His mere presence, certainly, buoying the entire very scared region.

David Lee Scales, anyhow, will be in Palm Springs.

The two discussed the World Surf League’s Finals Day, Kai Lenny calling Filipe Toledo out and Kelly Slater’s major hip surgery ahead of departures.

A culturally important listen.

Surfer bit on face by shark in Florida describes sensation falling somewhere between dog nip and “a bear trap closing in on me”

Ouch either way.

Florida’s New Smyrna Beach has the honorable distinction of being the “Shark Bite Capital of the World,” and it is, truly, well deserved. It seems as if there are near daily reports from the Central Florida gem of surfers being bit on hands, surfers being bit on feet, surfers being bit on buttocks, but never before have I read about surfers being bit on faces yet here we are.

A brave new day.

But let us meet Mark Sumsersett who hails from South Carolina though up in New Smyrna on a little surf vacation. He was out in the water, enjoying a little wedge here, a little wedge there, though noticing company in the water.

“I saw one (shark) right by me. I saw him cruising through the waves at me,” he told the local Fox News affiliate. I’m like,’What the heck? These guys out here don’t even care. They’re used to it.'”

And so he continued his surf, giving the lip a little smack here, giving the lip a little smack there, before coming undone.

That’s when disaster struck.

While the 39-year-old was underwater a shark bit him right on the face. “It was definitely a fight or flight situation,” he said and flighted to the shore where a woman called 911 and he was taken to a hospital and given over two dozen stitches.

But how does it feel to be bit on the face by a shark?

Summerset described thusly, “I got bit when I was a little kid by a dog, and it kind of felt like that, but like a bear trap closing in on me.”

There seems to be a wide gulf between those sensations but who am I to criticize for I have never been bitten on the face by a shark.

He will heal just fine, save “one or two scars,” which makes me wonder. What is the coolest scar in history?

I’ve got to go with Indiana Jones’s lip but Mark Summerset’s face might be way up there when all congealed.

Very chic.

Kelly Slater reveals body part from cadaver used during major hip surgery as champ faces at least three months out of the water

"It was a war zone in there!"

The eleven-time world champ is currently staggering around on crutches following serious hip surgery to repair what Slater describes, in an informal couch interview with Kai Lenny post-finals Day, as a “shredded” labrum. 

The hip labrum, if y’didn’t know, is a ring of cartilage that lines the rim of the hip joint socket. It deepens the socket, which gives stability to the joint, acts a sorta shock absorber when you rum and jump and helps lube the joint. A small but real important part of the machine. 

Slater, who’s fifty-one, said his hip has been real bad ever since he did the splits on a wipeout at Sunset thirty-two years ago and thought he’d snapped his femur. A few years later he was towing in Tahiti and  doing flips off the back of waves when he landed weird, hurt his hip, and then in the summer of 2000 he went in for surgery to clean up the mess. 

Twenty three years later he was back on orthopaedic surgeon Warren Kramer’s operating bench for a complete Labral reconstruction, again, not a labiaplasty, although can you imagine how stunning Slater might look with a little Chanel lippy in tender beige given creepy Bruce Jenner’s metamorphosis to gorgeous Caitlyn Jenner?

“They took a cadaver’s labrum, inserted it and tied it to my bone,” Slater told Kai Lenny, the boy with the mild, defenceless eyes of a lamb who, one month ago, mobilised his over one-million followers after supplies of insulin to fire-ravaged Maui were blocked by government bureaucrats.

“Warren said my Labrum was basically shredded from end to end…there were bone spurs on the femur head…I also had a lot of scar tissue. Warren got in there and said it looked like a war zone, said he had to get in there and chop through the woods.” 

Pain, said Slater, is a regular companion. 

“It would explain to me why I don’t want to surf a lot. I’m in pain a lot. It affected why back radically, trying to get to a position I internally rotate and my hip throws my back off. I already have pretty extensive scoliosis.” 

Slater’s take on Filipe’s title win and the behaviour of the other attendees is also exceptional, as you might imagine.



“Tone deaf” World Surf League rocked by mutinous fans seething over controversial “End of Era” post!

"Nothing but a facade pretending there isn’t a huge elephant in the room. Wall of positivity but no one’s buying it. It’s cringe."

The World Surf League is under siege tonight after an innocuous post celebrating Caroline Marks’ first world title lanced a boil of fury among surf fans seething over tour leader Carissa Moore’s second successive Finals Day failure. 

The WSL wrote, 

Caroline Marks just became:⁣

– Only the fourth Women’s World Champion since 2006⁣

– The first goofy-foot Women’s World Champion since 2005⁣

– The first mainland American


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by World Surf League (@wsl)

All true and a beautiful moment for a kid who had to step away from the tour for a year to deal with unspecified but “recurring medical and health issues.” 

But WSL’s surf fans, many of whom, I’d predict, have yet to feel the sensation of wax underfoot, mutinied en masse in an orgy of fury not seen since the damn Cawnpore massacre in 1857. 

“What a bloody terrible caption for this post. What are you telling the others it’s time to retire. If it wasn’t an Olympic year it would not shock me to see Carisa step away from the WSL while this final five nonsense continues. And I say this as someone who is really happy for Caroline and picked her to win. This post though is in very poor taste.”

“You guys are changing the history of world surfing with bizarre rules. you already stole two world titles from Carissa Moore. Enough, right?”

“Carissa was the true champ! Bring back the old format. Marks just won trestles, but not the circuit.”

“Just tell us that it’s the end of this bullsh*t format era. Champions deserve to be fully supported by the fans, wich is not the case BECAUSE OF THE WSL. Athletes deserve better, fans deserve better. Pro surfing this days divides instead of federate…and it’s definetly getting worst.”

“Once again this completely unfair system has stolen a title from the real champ Carissa More. That’s 2 already. Stop this nonsense. You don’t see anyone supporting this format online.”

“Should be Carissa on 7. So shit, all for viewer ratings. When are WSL going to acknowledge what Carissa achieved this season?”

“Carissa should be celebrating a 3 peat. Best all year and lose title cause a subpar day at trestles.”

“The people’s word champ” 🏆. Marks the Trestles champ on 1 day. Great achievement for both. And I am sure the humble Riss will honor Marks title, and Caroline herself will undoubtedly know that Riss won overall this year and last.”

“Congratulations @wsl. You invented a format that prevents the best surfer of the year from becoming the champ.”

“End of wsl if they don’t go back to old format and end season in Hawaii, the birthplace of surfing, Carrissa is the true Champion.”

“Yeah right! @wsl people, keep saying this format gives opportunity to others surfers to have a shot for the world tilte but all sums to a 1 event,…and in the USA 🤔”

“This doesn’t make sense and its unfair for that 1 surfer that has been proving all year why the number 1 is number 1.”

“Now imagine if all the other sports adopted this stupid idea/format? U can’t right? Because it doesn’t make sense and it’s Not fair. Stop this format, please.”

“This is a very tone deaf post. Read the room. It’s like WSL is just trying lose as many fans as they can these days.”

When the WSL’s own Jess Miley-Dyer poked her head above the parapet she was met with a fusillade of anger as the blood lust reached fever pitch.

“read the room”

“old format back. You ruined the surf”

“Carissa got robbed two years in a row! It’s painful to watch.”

“We are all praying you end up with E-Lo 🙏 congrats on the trestle win Marks and congrats on four years in a row tittle wins Carissa.”

“Typical WSL hologram comment. Nothing but a facade pretending there isn’t a huge elephant in the room. Wall of positivity but no one’s buying it. It’s cringe. Everyone sees the truth for what it is, Carissa should be world champ.”

“Read the comments. 95% of fans don’t like the format. We all see @rissmoore10 as a champ. Changing history of surfing not crowing the best surfer all year for a profit format for you guys to keep your jobs is a ridiculous insanity.”

Again, I quite enjoyed all the tension with my midnight snack as I watched the drama unfurl, curled up like a baby in front of a heater in my jammies, fiddling away as well as fiddling with the keys. I certainly wasn’t involved in such a way during any of the other events.

Why so much hate?