Tiffany and Chuck are 2008 ISA Tandem Surfing world champions !
Tiffany et Chuck sont Champions du monde ISA 2008 de Surf Tandem !
Feast of perfect waves for Tandem Surfers at 2009 Noosa Festival of Surfing
Vagues Parfaites pour les Tandem surfeurs au Noosa Festival 2009
Tandem and Stand Up Paddle Surfing boards: GUETHARY SURFBOARDS
Boards Surf Tandem et Stand Up Paddle: GUETHARY SURFBOARDS
Surf & Marketing
Surf & Marketing
Interview of Illa and Brian McEvilly, from California
Illa and Brian McEvilly have just won the international Dale Velzy Classic Tandem Surfing contest organized at Dana Point, Doheny, California.
The beautiful and experienced couple have won besting Sarah and Rico (France), the 2010 ISA world champs Dhélia and Clément (France), and Aimee and Christian (USA). Riding the surprisingly weak Californian September swell, our favorite team performed the most difficult lifts, choosing the best sets and offering to the public an example of what good tandem surfing is : surfing open faces, 100% synchronized, while being artistically perfect.
Illa and Brian have been married for a few years now and they
beautiful girls, which are into tandem surfing as well. They all travel
together around the world to surf the best spots and enjoy the local
culture and surroundings. The "surfing family" is extended to Illa's
sister, Anna Constable (now living in Noosa Heads, Australia) who was a
graceful and fearless tandem surfer with her partner of the time, early
in the 90's, Bobby Friedman, with whom she tandem surfed at Pipeline
and Waimea. The Hawaiian sisters, Illa and Anna, are
both well known for their ballet dancing skills and their surfing
performance, which make their male partners the luckiests tandem
Our Californian couple made the trip to Europe this 2010 summer, to participate to the ISA world tandem championship.
Unfortunately, Brian suffered a back injury which prevented them from performing at their best nontheless taking 3rd Place.
On this occasion, Nalu Association interviewed this nice and always-smiling couple.
- [Nalu]You have made the long trip over
from Hawaii and California to take
part in this years ISA World Tandem Surfing Championship 2010. For the
first time, this event was held in Lacanau, France instead of Waikiki,
Hawaii where tandem surfing began at the start of the century with the
beach boys and the Duke. A few other international couples were present
as well as French couples from up and down the coast from Vendee to the
Tell us all about it!
About your stay in France: Was it your first visit? What are the highlights of this trip? Any funny or bizarre experience you want to share with us? Tell us about Paris, Biarritz, Bordeaux, the Mascaret?
- [The McEvilly's] This was our 5th or
6th visit to France together and
our 2nd as a family. The girls remembered Biarritz from their
first trip a couple years back and enjoyed the atmosphere at the Roxy.
It was inspiring for them to see world class women surfers.
The first heats during high tide on a c4 were sketchy.
Highlight would be the Jacuzzi session on the boardwalk
afterward. The media and crowd that was there to enjoy tandem
was phenomenal and the girls thought that was pretty cool.
Brian and I were glad to be in the company of some of the most skilled
tandem teams since the conditions were challenging and we
didn’t want to disappoint. Surfing the finals at
Grand Plage 10 at night just before the fireworks show for a spectator-
filled beach was incredible. It was wonderful to see tandem
is still loved by the French =)
The tidal bore was an “experience”… Brian and I were too late to catch the actual wave. We didn’t know what to expect and the girls wanted to try too so their safety was first for us. We were the last group in the water and realized we had quite a paddle ahead of us. Towing two girls we quickly fell behind. Then we saw the wave with boards and people shoulder to shoulder quickly approaching us! We paddled the girls into the deeper water out of the way and spun them around but it was impossible to catch by that time. The girls have a good memory of watching from the water and being apart of the excitement. Brian and I will have to come back and try it again on another visit. It was pretty cool to see.
Lacanau is a special place to us. We love how the forest meets the ocean. I was able to enjoy some of the running trails and I hear there is a lake too. It was a nice change from the crowds of Biarritz to end up in Lacanau. There were families vacationing and it had a nice local vibe. Looking down the large expansive beach, there was no one. Being from California, that peacefulness was magical. The girls made a friend, Ilonna, from the Lacanau Surf Club and had a blast surfing and hanging out despite the language barrier. Keili was also stoked about surfing with her Dad for an exhibition the day before with Jeremy/Julie and Rico/Sarah.
We wanted to thank Rico for going out of his way coordinating tours of Bordeaux and making us feel welcome. Running an event is taxing yet he did his best to accommodate and entertain us all. The other French teams were wonderful too, including Laurie who was a judge. We also wanted to thank Arnold for letting us borrow his tandem board. With Brian’s bad back, he could barely stand up straight let alone carry a board through the airport and Arnold’s board was similar to ours back home. We were anxious about having to use the C4 since the conditions were mostly big bumpy wind swell.
The all night drive to Madrid Sunday night, I could have done without!
- [Nalu]What about the surfing conditions during the contest? The waves in Lacanau?
- With the wide tidal swings and the quickly changing
experienced quite a few different surfing conditions, but
that’s surfing! Looking back it made each session
memorable. We had big- stormy- windy days to beautiful-
small- sunny waves. Usually Brian and I enjoy a range of
surfing conditions to keep it challenging and interesting.
It was a shame the first day when all the teams were competing that we didn’t have good weather or crowds to enjoy the surfing, but you expect that it might happen during a contest. Unfortunately Brian hurt his back our first wave of the contest. We had to regroup and change to a conservative competition strategy. Thank goodness we have tandem friends like Lance Maki M.D. who helped Brian cope and the chiro at the contest. Luckily the next day was nicer for the finals.
- [Nalu]The organization, the judging?
- [The McEvilly's] I thought the contest and judging was well
done. It was nice to hear scores on the water.
Posted sheets after each heat would have been nice especially the first
day to see how they were judging, but I don’t know if they
had a printer…
My girls especially loved the bungee jumping and smoothie booth =)
- [Nalu]How did your different heats go?
- [The McEvilly's] I let Brian call all the shots and went with the flow since he was hurt. Each heat I thought we could just surf 2 and go in. But Brian was determined to give it his best. We didn’t want to play it safe, we had to at least try - but our initial game plan did go out the window!
- [Nalu]The final / The results
- [The McEvilly's] Brian and I didn’t
have a wave for
the first 10 minutes. I wasn’t sure if we were even
going to catch waves or just take 4th. At that moment Brian
decided we needed to go for it. We got one good wave with 3
lifts completed and we were pretty happy with the fact we
didn’t just sit there in the final. We paddled for
a few more but we knew we didn’t have another wave in
us. We paddled for a few more and would attempt only one
The results were surprising… it was close. No one had a good second wave under their belt with the changing and challenging conditions! We were particularly impressed with Clement’s surfing. We love to see new young teams charging and I think that is what set them apart for this contest.
- [Nalu]How was the atmosphere among the competitors? Tell us about the new teams you met but also the old friends you got to see again.
- [The McEvilly's] There was a lot of camaraderie between competitors and it felt like a global community. We missed you guys (of course!) Arnold and Matilde had a baby! Its an extraordinary excuse to see old friends from different parts of the world. That’s one of the special things about tandem, it’s a small, global family.
- [Nalu]The crowd on the beach?
- Because of the weather the first day the crowd was our tandem friends cheering from the beach. The next day, with the sun, came the public and they were supportive.
- [Nalu]The media, the photographers?
- [The McEvilly's] We didn’t see much media or photographers for the event… maybe the Lacanau Surf Club has some footage?
- [Nalu]You have taken part in several competitions and exhibitions around the world. Which was your favorite venue, the best place to tandem surf ?
- [The McEvilly's] That’s a hard one since some of
places to surf are not good venues. Some poor tandem spots
are good just because they allow the spectators a close up view of us,
like the pier at Huntington Beach, San Clemente, Oceanside or the Grand
Plage. I think its important to continue surfing these
contests and exhibitions even though they are not ideal to share tandem
with the general public, but it becomes important to have experienced
and skilled teams.
Venues that we like that have somewhat good access to the public in California are: Steamer’s Lane, Malibu, Cardiff and La Jolla. Good venues with limited public accessibility are San Onofre, Lowers, WindanSea and Church’s. Basically, good point and reef breaks.
Internationally we have enjoyed tandem surfing at: Queens, Pops, Hanalei and Honolua Bay, Makaha, Chun’s Reef in Hawaii/ The Pass & Noosaheads in Australia/ Chopu in Tahiti (there was a big flotilla of spectators there)/ Rio de Janeiro and Saquerema in Brazil/the East Cape, Scorpion Bay, San Miguel, K-38 and numerous breaks in Baja Mexico/ Guethary in France/ Punta Coyote, Playa Negra and Boca Borranca in Costa Rica. I would love to put Ireland on there too, but I haven’t gotten it good yet, just crappy with good friends!
Our favorite local tandem break to surf is Terra Mar in Carlsbad.
- [Nalu]In March 2011, Aurelie and I are organizing a two weeks Australian surf trip with photographers and a camera man in Southern Queensland and Northern New South Wales. Would you like to be part of the adventure?
- [The McEvilly's] We would LOVE too! I am looking for an excuse to see my sister and my nephews (I still have not met Jive who is almost 2…)
- [Nalu]Thanks a lot!
Fred and Lily