Archive for January, 2011

Meet The Family

Ryan and Leah Hardy are the proud parents of their first child. Oliver Jay Hardy was born at 5.50pm on 22nd, January 2011 in Margaret River Hospital. At birth he was 7lb11oz (3.49kg) and 51cm long.

“Mum endured an eight hour labour and besides the odd toke on the happy gas, Oli was born naturally”, Ryan reports. “It was by far the craziest and best experience that Leah and I have shared together and there’s no doubt in both our minds that bringing little Oliver into the world is the biggest achievement of both of our lives.”

“We’re loving being back home now, settling Oli into the nest and getting Charlie dog used to him. People warned me that life will never be the same; even though it has only been a week, already that free roaming kid I was seems well in the past and the responsible, dedicated father is kicking in.”

If becoming a parent this week wasn’t enough, Ryan also signed a new contract to ride for VS for the next three years. You can view the announcement from World Bodyboards over here.

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Behind The Ad # 35

Waking up early and going to Mandurah Wedge is something that has become pretty regular over the past few years, it has banks all Summer and always works as long as there’s a bit of swell.

The day the shot for this ad [Movement 35] was taken looked really average when we rocked up, a bit messy and heaps of seaweed everywhere.  After watching for a while I decided to get out there. I got a couple of fun ramps straight away but nothing amazing; a few airs in front of Caleb [Caleb Davenport, photographer] but didn’t think anything of it.

I only surfed for about an hour because the wind came in so I thought that it was a bit of a time wasting morning. It was the first time I had met Caleb and I wasn’t sure of his ability in the water but it turned out he killed it and got this amazing photo from a surf that was pretty half hearted. It goes to show that making the most of the conditions can definitely pay off!

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Australia Day Sale!

All Inverted Bodyboarding stores – Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast, Byron Bay and Port Stephens – are slashing prices in their annual Australia Day Sale! This massive sale is for one day only, Wednesday 26th, January 2011. Doors open at 9.00am and there will be a free BBQ between 11.00am and 1.00pm at the Sunshine Coast store.

The sale will also double as the 2011 sign-on for the Sunshine Coast Bodyboard Club (SCBC). SCBC meets one Saturday a month and is a great opportunity to compete, surf and socialise with other bodyboarders on the Sunshine Coast.

All Tee Shirts – including our Summer 2010 Tees – will be 30 bucks as well as huge reductions on bodyboards, wetsuits and accessories. Keep up to date with the latest sale information at www.facebook.com/invertedbb.

If you are unable to make it in store, all specials will be available on the Inverted online store. Hit www.bodyboardmart.com and pick up a bargain!

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Silver Lining

I guess the silver lining of all the crazy weather in Queensland lately has been the solid run of waves. We did the mission up to the Great Barrier Reef last weekend, it took a lot of effort and a bit of stress but it definitely paid off. To put so much effort into such a fickle place and have it pay off is pretty rewarding.

Frame grab courtesy of Michael Jennings.

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The French OG

A new shipment of our Summer 2010 collection landed at OGM Bodyboard Shop in France this week. Since opening their doors back in 2002 – the first bodyboard specialist store in France – OGM has become the biggest bodyboard shop in not only France, but the whole of Europe. With a solid online store, a huge selection of boards, wetsuits, clothing and accessories and Pierre Louis Costes on their Team you know they’re doing something right!

If you’re in France, visit Gontrand and the crew at OGM Bodyboard Shop located at Bd François Mitterrand, Capbreton and support your local Authorised Unite Dealer.

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Behind The Ad # 6

The day the shot in this ad [Le Boogie 6] was taken, I was still living in Perth and had taken the gamble to try our luck on what looked like a possible cross-shore day with a borderline big enough swell at Medge [Mandurah Wedge]. Chaddy J [Chad Jackson], Stoney [Jake Stone] and I went down with Whitey’s [Chris White] camera planning to do some take-turn filming for Whitey’s new film Blow Up while Gurney [photographer Chris Gurney] convoyed down with us.

Upon first check at sunrise we saw it was cross shore and barely breaking and pretty much laughed at it, wrote it off and went to McDonalds for breakfast.

We gathered morale and headed back after an hour hoping for a little kick in the swell. The wind had certainly kicked and the swell had too, marginally.  It took a huge effort to convince Stoney and Chaddy to hang around ‘cause it looked rank. No one was out and with nothing much better to do I conned them into a session. On my walk around the rocks to jump in, I knocked on Gurney’s car window and said “Man, we’ve driven an hour and a half down here so we’re just gonna go out and wait for a set. At least there’s no one out!”

Begrudgingly he setup in the wind alongside Chaddy after he opted to film first and leave Stoney and I to be the guinea pigs.

The invert in this ad was my first wave of the day. I’d just jumped off the rocks, Stoney was still putting his fins on and the biggest set of the morning so far came through. I caught the second wave that had a nice wedge bouncing off the rocks; I got speed off the side wave and gained even more as I flew off the oncoming ramp. I went further across in the air than I did out and ended up landing just on top of the lip, not making the boost but excited at the air I got.

I paddled back out to Stoney with a face of excitement and said “there actually could be some good ones today!” We ended up having a pretty fun session each filming 45 minutes from the rocks and then surfing for an hour and a half. There were long waits in between sets but ‘cause there was just two of us sharing waves with a couple of other guys it made it worthwhile. I ended up getting a few air reverses in during my time in the water but it was this invert on my first wave that earned me the best shot. Guess it pays to hang around and just give it a crack sometimes!

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King Of The Wall

The King of Port Macquarie, Damian King, got his first The Daily Frame of 2011 on fluidzone.com today. Photo by Josh Tabone.

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GSS Unveiled

The International Bodyboarding Association recently launched it’s new website and along with it, the unveiling of the new Grand Slam Series.

The Grand Slam Series (GSS) will showcase the best riders in the world at premium wave locations with extended waiting periods. Each GSS event will consist of the Top 24 riders in the World (determined from the previous years ranking) along with four wildcards and four trialists.

The riders will surf a 32 man, three round series (with four man heats) with each round being re-seeded (prior to to commencement of each event) so that the complete three round draw will be available before the event.

In each event there will be a leaderboard after Round 1 and Round 2, then, at the conclusion of Round 3, the Top 16 will go into Round 4 (with man-on-man heats). From there the event will continue with man-on-man Quarter Finals, Semi Finals and Final.

Confused? Well, we were too. The IBA has you sorted though, head over here for the complete run down of the new format. Details of the gateway to the GSS, the Global Qualifying Series (GQS), have also been uncovered. Click here to get the lowdown.

Unite Team riders Ryan Hardy, Damian King and Michael Novy have qualified for the 2011 Grand Slam Series. You can view their Rider Profiles – along with the rest of the Top 24 – by clicking this.

With events in Hawaii, Australia, Chile, Mexico, Portugal, Reunion Island and the Canary Islands, the 2011 GSS Calendar is huge! The first event of the year, The Pipeline Pro, will run from 15th February to 25th February. Not long now, get psyched!

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Behind The Ad # 179

The shot used in this ad [Riptide 179] is from my local reef in October. This Spring was really kind to us, it’s meant to be a time of the year filled with 1 foot Northerly mush but there were plenty of good days at the reefs around home; a solid swell with clean winds almost every week.

A couple of days before this photo was taken was actually some of the biggest and best waves I’ve seen at Cudgen; legit 6 to 8 foot, pretty lengthy pits and only a few of us out. Early on the high tide it looked too rogue for anyone to be able to swim out and shoot, which admittedly would’ve been really hard with the wash throughs. Needless to say I was pretty excited, the forecast looked good for the next couple of days too.

The next day was decent, not epic. Then there was this day, the third, which was also pretty damn good. It started out a little smaller than ideal, some good ones but a little anti climatic given the forecast for the day and the waves the previous days. The old rumour mill had been in full swing and sure enough, all the ‘heard about it yesterday’ crew was there too.

Eventually a few of the numbers got sick of dealing with the crowd and bailed, and even though it was inconsistent, it started to get a bit bigger. Some of the waves I saw come through later this morning were as good as anywhere. A couple of waves that stand out in my mind; one of Ash Bryant’s, an incredible pit, and also one that my brother Simon got [page 56 and 57, Riptide 179], a really intense one. I remember thinking I’d hardly need to travel for waves if was like that more often!

The wave in this photo was a bit of a wide one; hence me being on the outside of Alex [Alex Ormerod, photographer and Nick’s younger brother] in the shot, rather than the usual angle of looking into the barrel. These wide waves hit the corner of the reef pretty hard; you can actually see it hooking around on the edge of the reef. Turned out to be a nice backdoor section with a bowl afterwards to wash off the speed with a carve. Alex got the job done as usual, he called me over to check out the shot as I paddled back out, and even looking at the small camera screen we knew it was a keeper.

Those three days were really refreshing and exciting after what had been a pretty slow year for that particular patch of rock. A good little reminder of just how good the spot gets.

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Seeing Double

I’ve been friends with the Lawrence twins, Andy and Nick, for over 10 years now. They are two seriously talented individuals; Andy produced some of the best bodyboarding films ever made back in the early 2000’s and Nick is the former editor of Riptide.

During his stint at Riptide on the Gold Coast, I hung out with Nick quite a bit but as Andy now spends the majority of his time in Europe, I hadn’t caught up with him in a few years. He recently contacted me about some photos that he had shot of Hardy and Kingy in the Canary Islands this past December.

In one of the photos I noticed Andy rocking a Unite flanno that I had hooked Nick up with a few months earlier. I had to do a double take before I realised it was in fact Andy. He had swiped the flanno from Nick whilst he’d been in Europe but with good reason.

“I’ve been living in Berlin for a couple of years now. Having finished up at Riptide, Nick was staying with me for the Summer, and ended up doing some work for a magazine called Lodown”, Andy explained.

“He got to know the editor, Sven, quite well and they’d been hanging out a bunch. Sven has various projects on the go, one of which is a brand consulting company called Brand New History. They were organising a new catalogue shoot for a Berlin based clothing company and Sven asked Nick if he’d be interested in doing some modelling for them”, he continued.

“Unfortunately, Nick had just booked his flights back to Australia and was going to miss the shoot by a week or so. He then went on to mention that he had a twin brother to which Sven replied, “Get him to send me some pictures then.” So I set up some self portraits to show my range in my fetching Unite flanno”, laughed Andy.

“Anyway, Sven was stoked, the shoot went ahead, and a couple of months later, I now find myself the star of a full page Irie Daily ad in Bright and Vice Germany magazines. I like to think it was the shirt that sealed the deal.”

After conquering film making, Andy has now moved into photography and is producing some equally amazing work. Check out andylawrencephotography.com for some fine examples and keep updated with his most recent work at lessthanasecond.blogspot.com.

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