Carve Magazine Issue 187
New issue is in stores this week and available on the app now for you iPad folk. For next time how about letting the postie take the strain and subscribe?!
THE MEN IN GREY SUITS
Strange times on the world tour this year. If John John currently languishing at 26th on the ratings isn’t weird enough the West Oz event was cancelled outright due to shark concerns.
Yep. You read that right.
Now it’s easy to forget about the WSL pro sports tour sometimes. The Australian events rarely set the pulse racing, Brazil is a yawn. It’s only when the tour hits J-Bay, that is handily in our time zone, that we can dodge doing anything productive at work by streaming the webcast on all day. This year we’ve got the bonus of Keramas back on tour, but wind wise it’s the wrong season, it doesn’t work for that much of the tide and word on the ground is the building of hotels has disrupted the sand flow from the stream which builds up in the lee of the reef.
Tahiti, of course, can be epic, but it’s been a long time between drinks for the sickest wave on tour delivering sphincter-clenching, brownshort-making, borderline tow size death boxes. No Cloudie this year either.
The high performance playground of Trestles has been replaced by Slater’s Water Feature in the farmlands of Central Cali.
So it leaves Europe and Pipe to bring the drama, for the last time in the current window. Yes. Again. You read that right. Portugal and France are reportedly being moved to spring (could be epic, could be awful, will be cold) in the 2019 rejig of the tour and as you’ll have read, a lot, online the Pipe event is in the wind due to permit problems that are yet to be resolved.
So in an era of big change, the rise of wave pools as serious venues, big question marks over the tour’s financial viability and a trimming of the tour back to a Mentawai play off style finish in September it’s pretty poor timing for the apex predators of the brine to throw their toys out of the pram.
If we’ve learned anything from recent weeks is everyone has an opinion. And we all know what opinions are like…
We’ve also learned not to bury whale carcasses on beaches, unless you want to encourage a massive shark all-you-can-eat buffet queue.
Sometimes don’t you just celebrate living in boring old Britain and Ireland? The biggest thing we have to worry about in the sea is bumping into a turd or a plastic bag not a prehistoric killing machine.
This is the quote from the WSL’s British boss, Soph, regarding Bitey McBitefacegate:
"The WSL puts the highest premium on safety. This cannot be just talk, and it cannot be compromised. Surfing is a sport that carries various forms of risk, and is unique in that wild animals inhabit our performance environment. Sharks are an occasional reality of WSL competitions, and of surfing in general. Everyone associated with our sport knows that. There have been incidents in the past - and it's possible that there will be incidents in the future - which did not (and will not) result in the cancellation of an event. However, current circumstances are very unusual and troubling, and we have decided that the elevated risk during this season's Margaret River Pro has crossed the threshold for what is acceptable."
Sophie Goldschmidt, WSL CEO
This is, of course, from Jaws:
“I think I am familiar with the fact that you are going to ignore this problem until it swims up and bites you in the ass.”