Brevard’s Kelly Slater Still World’s Greatest Surfer At 42
By Space Coast Daily // February 8, 2015
SPACE COAST SPORTS HALL OF FAME UPDATE
ABOVE VIDEO: Kelly Slater lands a 720 in Portugal with Brett Simpson and Kolohe Andino. Slater was surfing at a high speed, and as he approached the tumbling whitewater, crouched low and spread out his arms, coiling his upper body and aiming for the lip.
He shot skyward and began spinning, his board now higher than his head. He went around once, then kept going, completing another half-rotation and landing backward in a sea of froth with his board pointing toward the shore. Then he spun another 180 degrees in the water and stood up.
Shortly after, the first clip was posted to Instagram. Four hours later, a professionally shot video that included commentary by Slater and other pros who were on hand in Portugal was on YouTube. The surf world erupted. Comments sections on surf websites lit up with a debate over whether the trick was a 540 or 720. A few younger pros had come close to landing something similar over the past year, but none had pulled it off. Nobody would have predicted that Slater would be the one to do it—especially not on his first try.
Examining the Perpetual Youth and Singular Talent of Professional Surfing’s King
OutsideOnline.com – It was a mixed day for surfing on the west coast of Portugal.
On the south side of Peniche, a small oval-shaped rocky peninsula poking out into the Atlantic, winds were gusting onshore at about 25 knots, leading organizers of the Moche Rip Curl Pro Portugal, the penultimate event in the 11-contest Association of Surfing Professionals World Championship Tour, to call for the fifth lay day in a row as they waited for conditions to improve.
Things were better on the north side, so many of the pro surfers who had come to town for the event went to a beach there to chase down the occasional barreling swells.
Among them, Kelly Slater, at age 42 the oldest competitor on the tour by six years, was probably the least enthusiastic.
“I had it in my head space that I was going to go golfing,” Slater told me a few weeks later. “It looked really hard to find a good wave.”