It was pure coincidence that I happened to be in Lyme Regis on Saturday 21 July 2012, I recall I wanted to enjoy that oh so Victorian jolly pastime of ‘taking the sea air’ and in their usual Saturday sloth-like manner, both sons reluctantly dragged themselves away from children’s TV to join me. (Actually to be more accurate, I think I dragged them away, but that’s semantics isn’t it?!)
I gleaned from listening in on various conversations that there was going to be some sort of surfing event. Now I’m all for a bit of excitement and I’ve seen pictures of the extreme sporting aka completely bonkers fanatics who turn their surfboard on the face of a wave and aim for a wipe-out and enter a barrel or tube; but this was Lyme Regis not Mexico and unlike the mountainous waves we saw during the 2014 winter storm, the summer sea was more akin to a mill-pond than a Big Mamma.
But I was prepared to give it the benefit of the doubt and I am so glad I did!
The dexterity, determination and daring of the surfers was unquestionable, the skill they used to reach the correct speed and optimum angle probably had some mathematical genius to it, but for them it obviously derived from months if not years of practice.
The logistics behind the event must also have taken some organising, this is after a small seaside town on the south coast of England albeit with a harbour that has been in use for hundreds of years and due to the destructive forces of nature, had the world renowned Cobb built to defend the land and properties leading down to the sea.
But the extremely strong cable they had strung across the harbour proved its mettle and metal as it acted like an enormous zip wire so the surfer could accelerate before launching their ‘stick’ or ‘fibro’ onto the platforms that had been strategically placed within the waters of the Cobb and High Wall.
To say they ‘iced’ each manoeuvre would be an understatement and when they flew, and I mean they literally did ‘fly’ over the Cobb wall, the crowd went wild with excitement.
It hasn’t happened since then, which is a pity. But if they should visit our seaside town again, I don’t think I’ll have to do quite so much dragging this time round…I think we were all very glad I decided to ‘take the sea air’ on that day!
If you are interested in some surfer lingo: http://rippinh2o.com/dropzone/surflingo.shtml
And for Red Bull events: http://www.redbull.com/uk/en/browse-all-events