We're Back at Bells! the Ain't That Swell Live Shows Are Surfing's Hottest Ticket, and Is 2019 Kolohe's Year?

19 Apr 2019 1 Share

Mike Jennings

Senior Writer

Photo: WSL/Cestari

Photo: WSL/Cestari

COASTALWATCH | THIS WEEK IN SURFING

Ten Things From Surfing & The Internet On The Week That Was April 19, 2019

1. Bells Has Started! (kinda!)

Coming down to Bells every year for the Rip Curl Pro is like Christmas. My friend Danny said that and I feel the exact same way. The vibe in the car park each morning – holding coffees against the cold as you check the surf, see the pros signing autographs at their cars after warm-up sessions while "Hells Bells" plays over the PA to mark the first heat. This is as classic as the pro surf world gets. Our kind of Christmas for sure, only this year Santa has skimped a little on the presents and delivered us a forecast devoid of waves.

They managed to run nine heats of the fellas at marginal Winkipop on Thursday arvo, though, and you can read all about it in Sean Doherty's Day 1 wrap. Not a heap to take away from the event so far except to say that the more it's at small Winkipop, the more it becomes Filipe Toledo's event to lose on the men's side.

So what should we do, watch Conner Coffin's lead-in YouTube Vlog leasing into Bells? Sure.

2. Speaking of Toledo

Here's Filipe's highlight edit from the Gold Coast comp just past. Are we watching the next World Champion you think? And what do you think of the lion tattooed on Filipe's chest? Does the lion rank as no.1 on the list of surfer tattoos? Or does that stay with Silvana Lima's giant 2009 Bells trophy down her side? Or Julian Wilson's bowling pin on his finger? I'm into all of them.

3. Ain't That Swell Live Shows Are Incredible

While Bells has started, kind of, the highlight of the event so far was the Ain't That Swell live show at Torquay Bowls Club on Wednesday night, featuring Kelly Slater and Mark Occhilupo. To a sold-out audience of podcast surf fans, Kelly Slater sat for three hours and gave the most personal and relaxed talk-story experience possibly of all time. Jokes and impressions and insights and heartfelt moments, everyone in the room felt like they'd been a part of something super special. It was the talk of Torquay the following day.

Keep an eye out for when that special episode finally drops, but till then, you can give the Newcastle episode featuring Jughead, Creed McTaggart and Mat Hoy a listen.

*Big language and content warning on this one!

4. A Really Nice Billabong Ad

Billabong Women's dropped this really beautiful looking clip this week that celebrates the community of female surfers across the world that share a kinship with the ocean. Something like that anyway. It features Laura Enever narrating over the top and scoring a pretty sick tube at the end. Sprinkle a bit of piano over the top, clip in som good cinematography in nice light, yep, I'm on board.

5. Kolohe Andino – Cabin Fever

It’s really starting to feel like Kolohe Andino has turned a corner in 2019. Finalled on the Gold Coast, looked completely in control in his Round 1 heat at Bells, and featuring in sick Lou Reed clips in black and white in between. So good! Jump on the Kolohe train for 2019. It’s about time America won something, somewhere, isn’t it?

6. Meet Shyama Buttonshaw

Our friends over at Monster Children drove down the coast to Vicco for the latest episode of A Local’s Perspective to go hang out with soulful young shaper Shyama Buttonshaw and reflect on being better to the environment. 

7. Chippa Wilson and Robbie Rickard Star in APOTEK

For Brixton, Shane Fletcher made this 10 minute piece of pure surf porn starring tech-air superstar Chippa Wilson and rising out of nowhere Robbie Rickard surfing Indo, the Maldives and Aus. Every time I hear the name Robbie Rickard I think of that Aussie hip hop song "Jimmy Recard". This video is better than that song. 

8. Volcom – The Backyard

"This is seriously the best surf movie I’ve seen in a very long time." – Someone named Mungadungalis, on YouTube four days. I'm not going to argue with Mungadungalis, no way. I'm backing Mungadungalis and his praise for this 10 minute surf vid featuring the Volcom team owning their zone at da Pipelne.

9. The Florence Brothers Surfing 'Round Home

Ah yes, the king of the surf vlog while hardly trying, Nate Florence, gives us his laziest clip yet, where he surfs a bunch of John's boards with John and his other brother Ivan. And they're ripping. Simple, good.

10. Let's Look At Some Vicco Coast With Wilko

And Leilani McGonagle. There isn't a heap of surfing in this but I'm leaving this here cause Wilko's vibe in his first year off the CT in quite some time is really cool. He's flying at the moment, cruising around all stoked out and having fun. I dig it. I'm also leaving this here because the Vicco coast rules and we all need a reminder of how good it is every one in a while.

And that was this week in surfing. Have a good weekend everyone.

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