My idea was in no way original. Airshows were all the rage a few years ago and to scratch my addled brain I’m pretty sure the legendary Taylor Steele of Momentum,Focus and more recently Stranger than Fiction fame offered up $300 to the first person he was filming to land an air reverse. Tim Curran took the coin and bolstered his pay packet more than twelve fold in doing so. I still remember the first airshow I watched, it was at Piha and damn you didnt want to take your eyes of the surf incase you missed something. The circuit comps are all good and there is some amazing surfing going on in these events, but again this year at Whanga when Billabong ran their Expression Session the same thing happened, it was a visual spectacular for that half hour when multiple crew went bananas going for broke and the one cheque for pulling the amazing. I got more sick shots in that half hour than I did most of the day.
Those that are following the hooplah regarding the ASP will know that the current format is slightly flawed. Put simply, people want to watch an hour or more of Jordy and Dane going crazy over a few days rather than seeing them try a big move in the small timeframe of a heat and be gone from the spectators for the rest of the event if they didnt make it. Having milk-it-to-the-beach (with conservative flair) specialists take up precious webtime is in a way holding back the sport. I liken it to a ‘Crusty Demons’ Vs Moto X Endurance race. What would you prefer to watch? Sure both disciplines are skilled but bang for cash, even if they fail as long as they going mental that is what spectators want to see. No brainer in my opinion.
I am a newby to photography (as in years of experience), but knowledge wise of most things surfing I consider myself pretty adept. I spend multiple hours shooting guys sticking stock standard air reverses and as skilled as the riders are it is boring me a little. It is the moves the crew go for that are tweaked, new or pushing boundaries that are fun to shoot even if they dont stomp them. I want the Crusty Show!! So while my first attempt at Punt For Cash didnt produce boundary breaking stuff, I hope I have planted a seed that may grow and bring you viewers the Crusty Show too.
Anyway, I caught up with Hewy and quizzed him on the whole deal from Sunday…
So Matty, ‘DiggaSurf Punt For Cash’, were you down with the idea?
Yeah I was super pumped when you told me about the punt for cash idea. I love the idea about taking to the air and then getting some cash to do it can’t be too hard!
How was the mission on Saturday for you?
Saturday????? Did I miss it!!!
(Ok smart-arse I meant Sunday, don’t get me started on your spelling…Digga)
Nah Sunday was good haha except I had a bit of a rough start! Having a big night on Saturday, was not a good thing, I am like a virgin at this night clubbing so thought I would have no problems keeping up. Famous last words, hahaha, went into town with the boys and only got home in the early hours of the morning. Having said all that I was super stoked to be part of the first DIggaSurf Punt For Cash, I got some super fun waves at the start and then I was pretty gutted when I ended up snapping my board on only my 3rd wave. So that wasn’t the best start but just as well I threw a lil’ 5’7” into the car that went pretty shit and had the worst tail pad on it. So maybe I should have just left it at home… until I got used to it, and then it was a little beauty that won me the cash!!!
I understand The DiggaSurf Punt for Cash event enabled you to surf a few spots you hadn’t before?
Yeah I did not even know those spots were around…I’ve got to get out more!! I had never surfed those breaks so it was cool to see some new parts of the Coromandel and get to surf some fun punchy waves.
Personally I was hoping to have at least four of you guys battling it out, obviously the short notice and large swell and Rangi’s health issues made things difficult, but if I can get all of your guys sponsors on board, are you keen to give it another nudge?
Yea for sure I think it’s a great idea and a really fun way to earn a few extra dollars. Great profiling for the companies, as well as us surfers, and who knows you may get the shot!! It was a bit of a bummer there wasn’t a good number of us punting it out there! But I am sure now that the word is out you will get a few more guys! It was really good that you still went ahead with it on Sunday, it earned me an extra few bucks…and I got some good waves so no complaints here! Yea for sure I would definitely be keen to give it another nudge. I don’t want to even make a comment on Rangi and his health issues, “buddy you need to get yourself sorted, get those crabs sorted” hahaha
(Careful Matt, Rangi will get a right of reply to this quote!And it is common knowledge he doesn’t do seafood, but nice to see some verbal ribbing)
What are the best conditions to nail big air moves?
For me the best wave would be a 2-3ft beachy with little sections that aren’t too sucky but still have some big ramps!
My goal is to capture one of the craziest airs stomped in NZ, air revo’s are stock standard these days, is there anything new you have been trying or would like to nail in the air department?
That would be sick!!!!Yea there is a few new moves that I’m trying (and have landed once or twice but need to nail them down) but I would be super keen to get them on film and photo’s !! One of the moves I have been trying out is a superman air revo which I go up do a superman and then just before landing tweak it out and land it backwards and spin around! And also the sushi roll would be good to get it on photo and film. And this may just be the right setting to get it on film!
And who do you see as a major threat when it comes to “Punt for Cash’ and why?
Anyone that can punt if you get a ramp and get the height and rotation down then anything can happen. But I would say that Rico(Ricardo Christie) and Billy(Stairmand) would be pretty sick at it if they got the right conditions.