Earlier this week, Kelly Slater sold his game-changing wave pool to the World Surf League. We’ve seen plenty of surfers surf it, but Kelly’s latest video sheds a little more light on the future of where this is all going.
Firstly, I’d like to mention that we finally get to see the 2014 WSL champion (and first-ever Brazilian world champ) Gabriel Medina surf the wave. It’s towards the end of the video and while we don’t get to see any of his patented backhand fin hucks or flips, his excitement about it says it all. I can say I can’t wait to see him throw those in a most likely soon-to-be contest held at that wave.
I’m merely reading the writing on the wall with that contest call. Because in this video we also find WSL Commissioner Kieran Perrow finally talking about it along with Deputy Commissioner Jessi Miley-Dyer. She goes on to have an intriguing insight about it: “Having a new wave like this, that just happens to be wherever we decide to build one, is going to be a really interesting thing for the tour.”
Well, shit. Doesn’t that just tell it how it’s going to be? Josh Kerr continues, “The technology is deifnitely going to change the sport of surfing in the way of competivite surfing and bringing surfing to places in the world that don’t even have oceans.”
Kelly summarizes best: “Having an artificial wave that you can alter all the aspects of it, the speed, the height the shape. And then you can do it repeatedly, over and over and over again so you have the same platform to work on. Surfing should evolve quickly on something like that.”
We can certainly see that progression is going to happen quick -- think of a skater in a skate park getting to try the same trick over and over and over again. Surfing, and more specifically competitive surfing, is certainly at an impasse. But it’s clear where the greatest surfer of all time thinks the “sport” should head.
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