Treat yourself, here’s the plan: Pack your car full of boards and sneak away for a midweek swell. Take the day off, surf your brains out and head back whatever life you live, feeling refreshed. If your a surfer missing the quality time in the water that your accustomed to, your not as happy as you should be. I know you have your favourite, within striking distance, surf spot. Go to it! You’ve got one day, but this is not a day trip… nope, it’s a little more than that. It’s simple, leave home the night before, skip the traffic and cruise the quiet highways to whatever destination you’ve decided on. No getting in the car to begin the journey that morning, no peak hour traffic, your supposed to be taking advantage your sick day. Stress less. Get as much time in the water as you can. Arrive in the dark, sleep in the car, in the car park, on the beach. Wake up before the sun rises - surf - hit your favourite coffee shop - surf - hit your favourite lunch spot - surf - hit your favourite dinner spot. Et voila’, your back on the road (after traffic) and heading home with a smile on your face. Surfed out, tired and happier than when you left, and you know what? If you time it right, you’ll slide into waves just like I did on my last night-day-night trip, or whatever you call it.
~ HARRISON ROACH
This March in Noosa, we saw the sixth installment of the Joel Tudor, Duct Tape Invitational, presented by Vans. Sixteen of the best log riders from across the world came together to slide and jive through a day of waves. First Point Noosa hadn’t seen such perfect conditions for longboarding all year.
Joel Tudor, mentor of every surfer involved and brainchild of the occasion, took the crowd through the criteria from the commentators box.
“Boards must be over nine feet long. They must be single fin, with no leash or leash plug. Boards must weigh more than twelve pounds. Surfers are expected to surf as though they are the love child of David Nuuhiwa and Nat Young. Gentlemen’s rules, dropping-in on fellow competitors is recommended.”
Thanks to the brilliant peelers, the guys involved took their talent to new levels. Each heat displayed highly technical surfing, with an array of styles. Spectators had a hard time differentiating between winners and losers and nobody envied the judges. Certainly the body language of the losers wasn’t normal for an ordinary event. Every surfer, win or lose, finished with a huge smile on their dial. I think it’s fair to say; first point Noosa hadn’t witnessed that standard of longboarding since the sixties.
Alas, as it happens in competition, surfers did lose… and the field narrowed until only four were left. The finalists included Jai Lee, Matt Cuddihy, Alex Knost and myself. I’m not going to go into detail about how those thirty minutes were spent…you can check out the video for that. Let’s just say it was a moment shared with good friends, perfect point waves and Eyere Feeling by Jacob Killer Miller blaring from the speakers (look that shit up).
I was lucky enough to get a win, and that night was spent pretty much like every other one that week: having a few too many.
~ HARRISON ROACH