Laurie Towner and the "corporate wankers"
Not having a sponsor may limit a surfer's privilege but it can increase their freedom. Of course that all depends on how you look at it.
Take Laurie Towner for instance. Lost his main sponsor, has to work as a tiler to make a crust, but now he has the freedom to tee off on the surf industry like this (the context is Laurie's Cloudbreak wave again being snubbed for an award):
"I feel for the surfers who have to keep the corporate wankers happy. I’m a bit bummed but in some way happy this wave didn’t make the top 5 nominees for @wsl @wslbigwaveawards. After Surfer mag didn’t put this wave in their top 5 for barrels of the year, beaten by 3 foot skeleton bay waves and a few others (if had the chance I wouldn’t swap all 5 waves chosen in surfer awards for this one haha), I knew there was no way this wave would make the top 5 big wave award nominations because of corporate bullshit!"
"What's the surf industry going to get out of Laurie Towner? The reason I’m somewhat happy is because all my life I though it would be amazing to have a ride of the year next to my name. I now know it’s a meaningless award chosen by kooks with no idea, who play the cards of surfers careers. Winning awards would be in some big wave surfers contracts. It used to be in mine and it truly sucks for the surfers trying to make a career out of riding big waves. Lucky for me it means nothing now."
"Although the money would of been nice if I made the top 5 it reassures me I want nothing to do with winning awards. I will never enter a wave again if I’m to ride another bomb, which I will. This wave is MY ride of the year, maybe my ride of my life and no one can take that from me. Maybe I’m being biased, you tell me? I wouldn’t change this wave for anyone else’s wave this year if had the chance even if you were to give me 50g on top, there is no better feeling than to successfully paddle a big scary draining wave safely to the channel."
"To all the up and coming big wave surfers, Fuck the big wave awards, do it for yourself no one else!"
"Sorry If I’m being negative. I'm not the only one who feels a little hard done by in this years nomination, there is a hand full of terrible decisions. I just want what’s best for the future of young big wave surfers and this needs to be fixed! honestly @wsl get tow waves out of ride of the year! You shouldnt be helped by a jet ski. It’s also hard to think an unmade wave can be ride of the year. Well @granttwigbaker wave might be an exception haha..."
"Also sorry for the novel."
(Homepage photo of Laurie at Cloudbreak by Ted Grambeau)