Mick Fanning splits from Red Bull
Mick Fanning and Red Bull pals.

Mick Fanning in shock split from Red Bull after twenty-three years

Goodnight and thanks for the laughs!

The Tugun-based surfer Mick Fanning, a three-time world champion, has announced his shock split from the multi-billion dollar sugar-and-caffeine merchant Red Bull after twenty three years.

Mick Fanning, who is forty-three or thereabouts, broke the news to his over million followers earlier today.

“Cheers Red Bull! After 23 amazing years packed with fun projects, unique experiences and wild adventures I’m moving on. Red Bull has always provided next level support to me, my family and my team in my professional and personal life. In recent years I’ve loved having opportunities to connect with other Red Bull athletes and aspiring young surfers to impart some of the knowledge I’ve collected along the way. Over the years we achieved great things but when I reflect on my time with Red Bull it’s the life long friendships with the staff and athletes that I’m most grateful for.”


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A post shared by Mick Fanning (@mfanno)

It’s been a remarkable career for a man born into hard-scrabble circumstances in Sydney’s outer west, an hour from the beach.

Three months ago, the immensity of his worth, thirteen million dollars, was revealed as well as the revelation Mick Fanning was so depressed he struggled to get out of bed following his premature retirement at the end of 2015, his Great White encounter, a world title loss to Adriano de Souza, the death of his brother Peter and divorce from wife Karissa.

Mick Fanning accrued his riches via his sponsorship with Red Bull, various property plays as well as co-founding the craft brewery Balter with a few pals and selling it for $128 mill.


Mick Fanning has parlayed his cash into a wildly diverse series of businesses, including “ethical” dog food brand Scratch, biotech company Sea Forest, a burger chain Fritzenberger and a Byron Bay yoga studio.

Billy Kemper Fiji wipeout of the century
The vision is compelling, the wildly virile tattooed daddy-of-four Billy Kemper getting airborne on a takeoff that by any stretch might be regarded even by surfers of this level as impossible.

Watch Billy Kemper’s wipeout of the century as Jackass Johnny Knoxville exclaims, “That’s some warmup!”

"Cloudbreak turned it on today! She’s a beautiful thing. Glad you're ok Billy Kemper."

The Big Wave World Tour champion and four-time Jaws winner Billy Kemper has thrilled masochists worldwide with a wipeout at fifteen-foot Cloudbreak.

The vision is compelling, the wildly virile tattooed daddy-of-four Billy Kemper getting airborne on a takeoff that by any stretch might be regarded even by surfers of this level as impossible.

Even a brief viewing has the viewer crouching in his armchair like an animal that is cold, the pit of his stomach churning as Billy Kemper goes helter-skelter into the void.

As you might imagine, the world’s best surfers, as well as silver-haired stuntman Phil Clapp aka Johnny Knoxville, dived into his commentary pane to dress him with compliments and back pats.
Nathan Florence:  That was next level flight time😂, injuries are a mindset, mayonnaise is a superfood

Tom Carroll: l: Yeeeeeew💯🌊🎉 Cloudbreak turned it on today!!! She’s a beautiful thing❤️glad your ok @billykemper

“That’s some warmup,” said Johnny Knoxville.


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A post shared by Billy Kemper (@billykemper)

The last time we spent any time in the strong-ish arms of Billy Kemper was three years ago when WSL visionary Erik Logan produced the six-part series ‘Billy‘, which followed his trip to Morocco, his terrible injury there, a long rehabilitation and his triumphant return to contests.

Episode four was a particular thrill.

It followed his triumphant return to America (thanks to executive producer and WSL CEO Erik Logan who, in episode three, tearfully whispered to his wounded comrade, “Gonna bring you home, Billy”), a visit from Laird Hamilton who offered Billy his home, with its gymnasium and pool and ice baths, to rebuilt his busted body and the revelation that the death of shredder older bro, Eric Diaz, of a drug overdose has driven everything.


Michael Hoskinson (pictured) not paying rent in JohnsKnees personal space.
Michael Hoskinson (pictured) not paying rent in JohnsKnees personal space.

Lighting rod former Huntington Beach planning commissioner in ultra hot water after admitting to stiffing surfer on rent!

Big trouble in Surf City.

Political watchers were shocked and dismayed, earlier today, after former Huntington Beach planning commissioner publicly admitted to stiffing surfers on rent. Michael Hoskinson, who works as a real estate broker after becoming inspired by his mother when she purchased him a house, took to BeachGrit’s libertarian message board in order to declare, “HAHA what’s the next lie you’ll tell about HB??? we love our town and are thrilled to stop politicians from being able to pander to identity politics. If you don’t like HB then stay the fuck away.”

The “lie” so happened to be a truth about Surf City, USA banning breast cancer survivor banners from civic property.

The statement, in any case, was met with a volley of live free or die responses including, from JohnsKnees, “Aren’t you the guy that resigned or got fired from the planning commission for your anti-semitic and anti-islamic comments?”

Hoskinson’s clearly aggrieved, shot back, “No, I’m the guy that is living rent free in your head.”

Free market capitalists and John Birch Societeers were stunned that the real estate broker would confess to leftist chicanery and openly wondered if he might, in fact, be a squatter or worse still.

A communist.

The record, while fuzzy on rents etc., does show that one Michael Hoskinson did, in fact, resign from Huntington Beach’s proud city council in 2016 after postulating, “I think Islam is definitely a threat. I don’t call it a religion at all.”

Theologians and historians wondered what he did call Islam though were left wanting as he did not explain after leaving office with tail tucked.

“Tail tucking,” as it so happens, likely to be banned in Huntington Beach soon.

BeachGrit’s religion desk has reached out to Hoskinson’s professional hotmail account and is hoping to hear back.

More as the story develops.

Huntington Beach sez "Kick rocks!"
Huntington Beach sez "Kick rocks!"

“Surf City, USA” voters enshrine ban on breast cancer survivor flags in Huntington Beach charter!

LGBTQ+ and World Surf League flags verboten too.

Huntington Beach voters turned out in droves, on Super Tuesday, to make certain Surf City, USA stays free from in-your-face breast cancer survivors, University of Southern California graduates, Grateful Dead heads and World Surf League aficionados. Those proud about their lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, Q Anon roots too.

The City Council, you most certainly recall, banned the flying of non-state, non-government, non-military flags on municipal property last year in a tight 4 – 3 tally. Days ago, voters lent their gravitas by enshrining the rule into the city charter by a slim 58% majority.

Mayor Gracey Van Der Mark boldly declared, “A lot of this is taking Huntington Beach back to how it was. A lot of cities are afraid to push back because they don’t want to be the target of Sacramento. We’re not afraid.”

“The way it was” clearly a shot over breast cancer survivors’ bows who, in truth, should now be afraid.

Peg Coley, the executive director of the LGBTQ Center Orange County, making it all about her community, was not so kind, countering with, “The Huntington Beach City Council is run by a hateful majority whose only interest is advancing an agenda of intolerance for minority communities, including LGBTQ+ individuals. The Huntington Beach City Council is run by a hateful majority whose only interest is advancing an agenda of intolerance for minority communities, including LGBTQ+ individuals.”

Surfer Magazine, taking its first political stance since endorsing Joe Biden in Biden v Trump First Blood, described the town as a “hotbed of Orange County conservatism” and warned readers that they will not be entirely welcome during this summer’s U.S. Open of Surfing.

Surfer, man. Always on brand.

Hot surfers in wetsuits
Rip Curl may have "shat the bed" with the trans-episode but very hard to deny beauty and effectiveness of their wetsuits.

Are Rip Curl wetsuits worth the inflated price tag?

When should you shift from Need or Project Blank and into the stratified realm of the high-cost corporate wetsuit?

I mentioned this Rip Curl wetsuit in my most recent board review. A 2mm long-sleeved springsuit purchased in their recent online fire sale. At fifty percent off it was cheaper than wholesale, if my memory of wholesale costs serves me correctly.

Maybe it doesn’t.

I hadn’t bought a Rip Curl wetsuit in ten years or so. Not through any specific distaste for them. I’ve just been swinging back and forth in recent times between basic and premium wetsuit brands.

You gotta give Need, and to a lesser extent Project Blank, credit for the niche they’ve created. Upon purchasing my first Need, which was probably around the time I wore my last Rippy suit, I swore I would be a customer for life. Good-enough quality, drastically reduced prices. A brand ethos I could get behind. Even the all-black design was a major selling point.

But wetsuits are one of those things like mattresses or seafood. Sometimes it’s worth paying a premium price to ensure you get a premium product. Need and PB just haven’t quite got there yet with matching the top-end performers. Perhaps it isn’t in their interest to do so. I dunno.

They’re a damned good suit for those on a budget, and I don’t want to dissuade anybody from copping one if they’re looking at suits in that price $200-$400 range. They still can’t be beat.

But I started drifting back to the premium side a few years ago. A Zion 2mm steamer which I still use as a backup. An O’Neill Defender steamer purchased last winter, which I surfed in every day for six months and which is still holding up admirably.

The extra stretch and water protection was immediately noticeable when compared to my Needs and Project Blanks. And this was only a mid-range O’Neill suit. For those cooler winter and autumn mornings, when a certified cold wuss like myself wants as much protection as they can get without sacrificing flexibility, you can’t go past the top-end performers.

It was to my delight, then, when I saw the Rip Curl wetsuit fire sale.

As I mentioned in my previous article, I didn’t really need a new suit. Around my neck of the woods you can transition from boardies and vest to steamer without too much fuss.

Plus I already had a long-sleeved springsuit. A Need, funnily enough, which served four seasons of intermittent use. But it was ready to go. The material was deteriorating so that every time I surfed I had a ring of black nylon/glue around my neck. The fabric in the derriere was one wide legged swing away from ripping open completely. Not a pretty sight.

Cue the Rippy fire sale.

Derek had posted the link at the height of the Sasha Jane Lowerson controversy. You remember it well enough. Rip Curl first published a post supporting their relationship with the famous trans surfer, before subsequently deleting the post and apologising for any offence it had caused.

A quick note on this in defence of RC: they did indeed shit the bed with their back and forth. SJ left hung out to dry. Both sides of the argument alienated.

But from what I see on the ground, Rip Curl still do a lot for grassroots surfing. Many kids around here get their first nose sticker deal through RC. I see them out and about supporting boardriders clubs, hosting events. Being part of the community. The Sasha debacle was a PR misstep, and something they will no doubt learn from. But their overall core cred is still there with me.

Anyway, on to the wetsuit itself.

You may remember I had actually put this Rip Curl wetsuit up on Marketplace to fund a board purchase. As new. With tags. Cost price plus a little extra for the obligatory online haggle. But after ten days or so the post had received no bites, and on the first cool-ish day of late summer/early Autumn I decided to wear the fucken thing instead.

It’s a beauty.

There’s a few little design issues with RC chest zips, an under-neck guard that stubbornly refuses to go over my shoulder. Zipper teeth closing in the wrong direction. Key cord that’s too thick for my key. But the thing is ridiculously warm, even as a 2mm, and within a couple of surfs it had adequately stretched into the unique undulations of my bodily contours.

Of course, the day after wearing it I copped three enquiries on Marketplace asking if it was still available. But it only took that one surf to know I had made the right decision.

That endorsement, however, comes with one caveat. Rip Curl wetsuits, while stretchy, are notoriously flaky when it comes to durability.

I shall report back in one year to see how it’s holding up.

What’s your take on long-sleeved springsuits? Do you thrill in the ultra-hip sleekness of long arms and short legs? The buttock firming qualities of the neoprene pull? Or are you a short arm steamer, meat and potatoes type of gal?