Aramoana, 'The Spit': do not touch, it's sacred

The Aramoana Spit, one of the best surf spots in New Zealand, is under serious threat.

Surfers fear the expansion of dredging plans will end the quality waves in that Southern country’s peak.

Port Otago has asked the Regional Council authorization to dump dredge spoils at the Aramoana Spit, in order to allow larger ships to navigate through to the Port Chalmers.

Thirty years ago, the wave break could have been destroyed as authorities were planning an aluminum smelter. In those times, surfers and environmentalist stopped the disaster.

Aramoana is known for the perfection of its barrels. The Surfbreak Protection Society is lobbying local power to protect "The Spit" from ending surfers' dream spot.

Reubyn Ash: the trickster

Reubyn Ash (Newquay, GBR), 22, has won the ASP Europe Specialty 6.0 Cash for Tricks event in Anglet, France, today, the British athlete unleashing his well-known progressive surfing to dominate an angry 40-man field that once again pushed their limits in the clean two-foot surf on offer.

Ash, who finished ahead of young gun Edourard Delpero (Biarritz, FRA) and renowned free surfer Christophe Allary (Reunion Island, FRA), delivered a flawless performance of airs, aley-oops and fins-out rapid-fire turns to secure event No. 2 of the 6.0 Cash for Tricks Series.

“This is real cool and they have a great set-up here today,” Ash said. “The concept just allows one good trick to make a difference during a heat and gives place to creativity. Any big trick means cash and you don’t even have to win the event. It just allows us to push our surf as high as possible.”

Ash, a longtime ASP Pro Junior top contender, was able to show again his impressive skills despite the clean but small surf on offer, the British native finding his speed and flow on any possible wave coming through at the beach of L’ocean in Anglet.

“I just love surfing and I really always get out there with the goal to get the most possible out of any conditions,” Ash said. “I am looking already at getting into the next event in Lacanau hopefully but I am stoked right now to grab that first place in such a fun contest.”

With two events remaining and a much expected show including the world’s best air specialists in Lacanau next week, Ash will certainly be a favorite when he paddles back out with 6.0 Cash for Tricks contest vest on.

Shining with some frontside air of his own in the final was Reunion Island born athlete and progressive surfer Christophe Allary, 25, the part-time ASP Star Series competitor taking the opportunity to focus on what he prefers, aerial surfing.

“It’s just the kind of events I prefer,” Allary said. “You get the chance to focus on your best possible move and let the pressure go. But it still is about winning the event and it is still a contest, just a different super cool one. Today was great, sun, a nice set-up, some music, everyone enjoying their time out in the water, and some cash to top it all. I am a big fan of the thing!”

With the usual French summer holiday crowds all checking out the 45-minute final and all event title contenders letting go their best possible tricks to get the judging panel on their side, the 6.0 Cash for Tricks gave its invitees exciting frame and guidelines to confirm its solid mix of competitive and progressive concept, the defined criteria suiting perfectly the unique format in place.

“Considering the small waves, the guys absolutely blew-up and the amount of talent present in Anglet was just impressive,” Event manager Andy Higgins said. “The European junior surfers are impressive, they love the format and everyone had a lot of fun. Definitely looking forward to the next event in Lacanau and see the big international stars come out and play which will be awesome.”

After Joan Duru’s win in the opening event of the 6.0 Cash for Tricks Series at Seignosse, Ash taking the Anglet event today, and the world’s best aerial specialists confirmed for the Lacanau event set for Tuesday, August 17, the ASP Europe Specialty event is just about to get on fire.

The Future of Surfboards: there's everything a modern surfer will need

How will the surfboards be in the future? Will they embed gadgets such as mobile phones? Will surfers be able to feed themselves while enjoying the pleasures of wave riding? Where is innovation in modern surfing?

Well, in 2004, Intel - world’s largest chip manufacturer - created the world’s first ever surfboard with built-in wireless laptop. The surfboard allowed surfers to check their emails and surf the internet.

We're living in the world of global communications, so decided to shape the surfboard of the future or, if you wish, the futuristic surfboard.

Here's our proposal:

1. HD Camera: good for capturing the biggest barrel of your life and to prove it to your friends and family;
2. iPad w/ Internet Access: "yes, boss. I am in a middle of a meeting. I'll call you back in a few waves... er... minutes";
3. GPS w/ Height Measurement: your aerial moves will be recorded and you'll enter the "Biggest Air of the History of Surfing" after many tries;
4. Finger Pulse Oximeter: is my body responding well to seven consecutive duck dives?;
5. HiFi Embedded Speakers: hit the peak with Metallica or Jack Johnson;
6. Propeller: tired of paddling? No problem. Press "on". thinks these are the best add-ons for the future surfboard. Have you got other suggestions?