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Posted by Rick Civelli | 10.30.2010 | WB Surf Camp News

Dylan, Drumming, and Duct Tape

Dylan, Drumming, and Duct Tape

Flying these days is pretty easy, but never without some sense of adventure; Like arriving at your connection and seeing your next plane boarding; Like looking out the window at the plane wing knowing that it’s made from one million individual parts …and duct tape; or arriving in Puerto Rico for the 2010 Rip Curl Pro Search in Puerto Rico.

It’s no secret that this may be a historic contest as Kelly Slater has the potential to win his 10th World Title at this last stop before the Hawaiian Triple Crown. The trials ran yesterday for one of the Puerto Rican Pros to have a chance at the WCT. Middles, the contest venue, is a tricky looking wave. It was pretty chunky and windy during the trials, but Dylan Graves pulled out a win amongst his Puerto Rican brothers early in the day.

Dylan Graves, post Trials win!

After a couple fun surfs at Surfer’s Beach and Wilderness I made my way back to the contest site to see an increasing swell, glassy conditions, and Jordy Smithy lofting 6 foot air reverses on 8 foot waves landing backwards in the flats like it was nothing. Rip Curl gave a great presentation on their brand and core values, followed by an afterparty hosted by the Puerto Rican board of tourism. The governor of PR and  Hawaiian Senator Fred Hemmings gave a few words and a huge Puerto Rican feast was served with fresh empanadas, chicken skewers, and fresh papas (potatoes) for the vegetarians…me.

Taj…warming up

Among the Rip Curl staff, sat Stephanie Gilmore (Women’s World Champ), Bethany Hamilton (Rip Curl Wildcard for the event), Matt “Wilco” Wilkinson, and…what’s that? Tom Curren was asking for me? Are you serious? Not Jadson Andre, the Brazilian WCT surfer? Umm, okay, awesome!


I met Tom a few years ago in Panama where we spent a week with a bunch of groms from around the US that were Junior Leaders in Christian Surfers, a non-profit designed to love and serve the surfing community. It was a cool environment to get to know him and his family, away from the masses. We met again when Rip Curl came through the Outer Banks a couple years ago withhim,  Mick Fanning (current World Champ), Pancho Sullivan, and Taylor Knox. We played some music together and had a good time with the OBBC crew.

While in Panama I became friends with his sons Frank and Pat and had spoke with them prior to coming here. So I knew he would be here and had texted him earlier to go for a surf. Instead he and his wonderful wife Mackie invited me to go jam at some guys mansion down on the beach…totally weird, but totally awesome!! Of course I’d like to go. So we spent the evening rocking out with a couple local musicians, one of which used to be Ricky Martin’s guitarist. The percussionist, whom I sat in with, had been in WB the past two summers with Surfer’s Healing and was a super stoked, super rad guy…not to mention an amazing drummer. We traded off the congas and his traditional Puerto Rican drum, called a Bomba, for an hour or so.

Jam sesh w/ Curren, Tito, Frito, y el hombre de Ricky Martin

Day one…are you kidding me?