Monday, 23 May 2011

VINTAGE LONGBOARDING"the 1966 world surfing contest"

That world contest shook up California surfing, Doyle recalled. At the time we were all riding 10-foot surfboards with trash-can noses, and we were still into an old-fashioned style of surfing there you stomp on the tail to kick the nose up, let the wave build-up go in front of you, then you either run forward and crouch down inside the tube, or else you stand on the nose and arch back in a kind of pose. We had all these stock poses we did over and over el Spontaneo, Quasimodo, Nose Tweaking, Bell Ringing. They had originated back in the goofy Malibu days and had been a lot of fun over the years. But they had also stifled the creation The real agent of change that year was Nat Young, Mike Doyle wrote, who came over from Australia with an old, beat-up, nine-foot log that looked like hell. But it was shaped like one of the old pig boards a shape that had mostly been forgotten. of new styles. It was time to move on to other things.Years after the World Contest, Nuuhiwa recalled of a conversation about an over-emphasis on noseriding in contests, Nat and I got together and laughed about it. What a joke. But I figured, Hey, if thats what they want, thats how well play it out.
I was disappointed, continued Nuuhiwa, talking about the fact he and Nat never got to duel it out, because I came down with the flu after a good first day.
Nat Young emerged the winner.
It was the first time most of us had seen anything like Nats style, Mike Doyle recalled, and it set him so far apart from the rest of us and impressed the judges so much, it was impossible for him not to win the contest.
It was the first time a world championship had been won by a surfer from a country other than the host nation.And by the way, Doyle wrote in 1993, all modern surfboards today follow the pig-board concept wide in the tail and narrow in the nose.
I think Nats performance at San Diego in 66, Jeff Hakman declared in the late 1990s, really was a benchmark in world surfing. It was the last of the longboard contests, and seeing what Nat could do on a board that was basically a log, made us all realise what was possible if we had better equipment.

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