This week the WSL announced the nominations for Red Bull Big Wave Awards. Yet here at Tracks we like to recognise the underground surfers that don’t have the money, talent or bravery to surf Jaws or Nazare. These true heroes don’t surf for the money or the adulation, but for the sheer joy of riding very small waves. Here in the second Annual Tracks Small Wave Awards we salute those that never, ever, put it all on the line.
Fewest And Smallest Wave Award
Kharrine (pronounced Karen) Perineum-Peterson, an aspiring social media influencer (following 3.5k, followers 1800) moved from Penrith to Byron Bay nine months ago. In that time she’s posted 645 images of her, her bikini and her McTavish longboard. In an incredible feat, given she has had only had four surfs in that time, all at the Pass. Of the three waves she managed to catch, none were above the tattoo of the Byron Bay Lighthouse (with rainbow and dolphin) which is on her calf. ‘“This award means a lot,” said Perineum-Peterson. “If I get above 2K followers I can give up the job cleaning at the hotel and do Tik-Tok full time.”
Smallest Wave Ridden In Biggest Swell Award
With the recent swell bombarding the East Coast of Australia, Randwick school teacher Fennedy was one of the first to dust off the 9-foot gun in his mum’s garage. With the swell at its peak, Fennedy checked Ben Buckler, Clovelly Bombie, Wedding Cake Island, but deemed them all too fat. Deadman's was too crowded and, being old school, he refused any jet ski assistance when friends offered a tow out at Long Reef. Luckily for Fennedy the Sydney Harbour break of Neilson’s Point was picking up the last remnants of the giant East Swell. The 9-footer meant he gained early entry into the outside ledge. Later he said he had in fact surfed it bigger, but the direction was
Mad Dog Maddison
Boat Trip Avoidance Award
Mad Dog Maddison had convinced the WhatsApp group, known as the Rusty Trombones, that the Maldives was a far better bet for his 50th birthday boat trip. Having heard of horror stories of the Mentawais being battered by six-to-eight foot swells for an entire 10-day trip, and worse, another gang copping a week of Speedies at G-Land he was determined not to make the same mistake. Imagine the horror then when his out-of-season trip to Maldives coincided with a serious Indian Ocean storm that delivered waves that never snuck under six feet for a week. “This is bullshit,” Mad Dog ranted on his sixth day where he again elected to go fishing. “The brochure had words like playful, fun and intermediate. I’m filthy. It’s been eight-foot and pumping every fucking day.”
The Inland Award
Trent, from Torquay, racked up an impressive 19 sessions at the new Melbourne Wave Pool in its first three months in operation. Often, literally, turning his back on six-to-eight foot Winki or macking Bells, McTubbart would instead make the three-hour round trip, fork out the 70 bucks and dominate the Cruiser Session at the wave’s easiest setting. “Look, don’t get me wrong,” McTubbart said, “I love surfing big Bells, but for a short drive I’m guaranteed 15 waves in an hour and no fucker paddling on the inside. You can’t put a price on a wave count.” When asked how much all the sessions cost him, he replied. “5 grand.”
Reg Grundy The Royal Approach
When Newcastle goofy-footer Reg Grundy discovered he was the distant relative of Lord Montague Grundy, he decided to reclaim his title. Grundy was a renowned charger at third reef Merewether and a regular at Fanny’s nightclub in the early 2000’s. Once aware of his royal lineage, Grundy finally proposed to his fantasy girl, the winner of Tracks Miss Surfest 2003, Sandy Clacker. The promise of a royal title was enough to get Sandy over the line. Sandy was confident the departure of Meghan and Harry from the spotlight had created a gap for her and Reg to become the new darlings of the Royal Family, particularly given Sandy’s 500 Instagram followers for her flashback Friday shots of her time on the bikini contest circuit. They moved to a large country estate in the south of England where Grundy has become a devotee of a fickle harbour-wall left.
“It’s a wave befitting a blue-blooded gentleman,” commented Grundy, sounding a little disappointed that his afternoon high tea with Sandy had been interrupted. “It breaks in the same place every time and never gets over three feet. It also allows me to ride my 11-foot-SUP with a regal, upright stance, and I never get my hair wet. MR might have been the king of Merewether but I’m the Lord of this wave.”
Grundy wasn't surfing on the day featured below. He said it was too big, and beneath him to be in the water with so many commoners.