Archive for January 9th, 2012

Way Cool on Hainan Island……Part 2

January 9, 2012

Just so you know we are both on the same page, here is your calligraphy lesson on writing Surfing in Mandarin:Ehow video

The history of surfing on Hainan Island began in 1986 when Australian surfer Peter Drouyn sought to establish a surfing academy on said island.

Peter Drouyn then

After a decade long career in professional surfing – a career that included top-tier victories and contributions such as of man-on-man surfing – Drouyn retired without any tangible rewards for his efforts. In November 1985 he told Tracks, ” Look, I’ve got nothing to show for all this achievement, skill and creativity. I could go and be a tyre fitter or I could stick myself back into something different and see where it goes.”

So Drouyn did a course in Asian Studies at Griffith University, and whilst there got the idea of introducing surfing to China. After finishing the course he spent many months ploughing through the red tape that would allow him permission to do so.

Drouyn’s ambition to enter a Chinese team in the 1988 ISA came to nought, and God it must have been a stressful gig, as he went on to out himself as a transgender reassignment candidate with the new name Westerly Windina.

Westerly today, plus vintage board

The next loawai surfing entrepreneur on Hainan was Brendan Sheridan who pioneered the Hainan Open in 2008, China’s one and only surfing competition.

Tremendous visual of pure wave concentration - Hainan

Another excellent account of attempts to open China to surfing culture courtesy of ESPN can be found HERE,
pro surfer Holly Beck discusses Sino-surfing HERE, and we are now in the middle of the Hainan Riyue Bay International Surfing Festival presented by Quiksilver January 6 to 14, 2012 HERE.

Former ballerina, pro long board super hot pin-up Darci Liu. San Diego

While Hainan has serious surfer unfriendly pollution issues (eg broken glass), and women fear that farmers daughter tan, Sino-surfers are also acquiring an enviro-conscious mindset.

HERE is my favorite link and quote: One afternoon, when Mr. Sheridan took two young Chinese couples out for a surf lesson in Sanya, he got an unusual request from one of the women. “Can I take this umbrella with me onto the surfboard?” she asked.

Lets leave it here for now, but I give you a major league prediction. Young Chinese urbanites will adopt surfing attire in a big way too soon in the future, and I shall address that cool style claim in another post.

Hainan Open official website:

http://hainaninternationalsurfingfestival.com/china-cup/

Glossy and clunky, and a corporate group grope to put it mildly, with the stodgy Agricultural Bank of China getting in on the act.
A couple of nice photos though.

Second day results naturally sees Australia leading the Team events with the French coming a close second.

Below two way cool women long board riders.

Yuko Shimajiru heading for a Formosan sunset. Also ranked 17 ASP

Hatsumi Ui. Ranked 17 ASP
Yoko Shimajiru heading into a Formosan sunset. Also ranked 17 ASP

Want to build your own hot list, well THIS is where you go.

Finito. Promise.

Way Cool on Hainan Island….Maybe. Part 1

January 9, 2012

Despite its extensive coastline, East and South-East Asia is not exactly noted for its beaches, sun, sand and surfing activities. China Beach (some 30 kilometres long and south of Da Nang) has a website which provides a 48 hour wave forecast. Relatively small waves depending on open water access. Given the extent of Vietnam’s coastline, surf tourism is relatively undeveloped, and there is always the unwelcome possibility of UXOs (unexploded ordnance).

No Apocalypse Now war porn references.

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There are some identified surf spots around Hong Kong and along the Guangdong coastline , but I just can’t see it for obvious water quality reasons. Ditto for Zhujianjin Island off Ningbo. To view this information, go to www.magicseaweed.com

The east coast of Formosa (formerly known as Taiwan) offers small waves and what appears to be a pleasant tourist experience, while Japan has a serious surf culture as illustrated by this website, but I recommend that you purchase a good wet suit before venturing forth. However, no sharks it seems.

Water Babe in Peril

And this brings us to surfing in China and Hainan Island in particular. Hainan is variously discussed in superlatives by its spruikers as the Chinese Riviera, China’s Gold Coast, etc. Its claim to fame thus far relates to its being the home of the PLA-N nuclear submarine base (close to Sanya), boom and bust real estate market and massive sex industry.

It is also a major golfing entrepot (Mission Hills, no doubt spruiked by that odious Greg Norman), the host of the politically correct Miss World Contest and its yacht showrooms catering for PRCs mega-wealthy and clueless. In short, a rich source of critical commentary on much that is wrong with social wealth relations in China today.

To be continued.