Abandoned board ends Sebastian Steudtner's season
If you recall teen windsurfer Adam Warchol's recent Peahi wave, you may also remember the punter going over the falls at the end of the wave.
In the wake of that beating, people hashtagged @kookslams assuming old mate was a hapless learner getting his comeuppance for daring to paddle out at Peahi.
As it happened, Rafael Kroeff was an experienced surfer who, in his own words, made a mistake, playing with his tow straps and losing the rope when a wide set hit the reef. Yet instead of diving deep and ditching his board, whereupon the lip would launch it like an Exocet missile, Raf made a split-second decision to sacrifice himself and went over the falls in spectacular fashion.
Now, here's the opposite outcome: a surfer caught inside, as Raf was, but rather than gripping the board and sacrificing themselves they ditch the board, dive for safety and to hell with the consequences.
In this instance it's German surfer Sebastian Steudtner and the location was Nazare on a mid-size day.
"Two months ago my season ended with a dislocated clavicular, fractured ribs, and torn muscles in my neck and chest.
"I was dropping into a wave setting up my line, saw a friend of @maya paddling out and thought I’m gonna go around him and give him space. He jumped of his board to dive under the wave, shooting the board right in my direction as I passed him.
"My right arm prevented damage to my face but redirected all the force to my chest."
"All preparation ahead of the season for nothing. I had to go into months of physio therapy and painful work."
From reports, the surfer who ditched the board got through the wave unscathed.