Tracks No. 573

Tracks is Australia's leading surfing magazine. For over 40 years Tracks has tapped into the minds of cheeky grommets and grizzled gurus alike, and remains the voice of hardcore surfing in Australia today. Every month it takes you to the most exotic surfing locations, fills you in on what's happening on the pro-circuit as well as at your local beaches. Tracks is the surfer's bible.

Tracks Media Pty Ltd
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7 Issues

in this issue

5 min
sunny moments

For a 13-year-old surf obsessed teenager in the late 80s, the arrival of the ASP Tour on your shores was a major event in your adolescent life. Back then, insights into your favourite pro-surfers were gleaned from the pages of Tracks or the VHS releases you watched on loop. There was no WSL live webcast, no immediate gratification Google search, no regular supply of clips to chew through and analyse and no Instagram feed to provide a window (albeit a manicured one) into the personal lives of surfers on the tour. The scarcity of information helped to make surfers into mythological figures. They were in many ways bigger than they are now because you spent so much time building them up in your imagination. The classic guru figure knows never…

2 min
marked file

Snapper Rocks is not always a sure thing. The wind can be right and the swell aimed at the perfect angle [locals will debate what that is] but if the sand isn’t packed in firmly without holes in the lineup then the magic won’t happen. Earlier in the year the WSL fell victim to the volatilities of Coolangatta sand as a deep hole off Snapper sent the entire team schlepping over the hill to D’bah and made a costly dent in the contest budget in the process. However, by early July, thanks to southerly swell patterns and an active Tweed bypass, the sand had been poured in like a freshly laid slab of concrete. Such an event is received by surfers in much the same way the Alpine sect might…

7 min

From The Vault. Sunny and Bells: – Photo: Tony Nolan Sunny Garcia’s six triple crown titles make him synonymous with performances on Hawaiian shores. However he also won Bells three times. Sunny’s rail game was perfectly suited to big chunks of southern ocean swell and he could go well beyond a five with a single, heaving turn in the bowl. Case in point. Follow. @tracksmag like, duhhhhh! Read – Surf By Day Jam By Night Muso Ash Grunwald engages in a series of conversations that feature surfer-musicians. Inspiring reading for anyone who wants to pursue their passion. Featuring Jack Johnson, Kelly Slater and Steph. Behind The Cover. Photo: Simon Williams “We were doin’ priority rules and it was pumping so I really just wanted to get a good set and I waited with priority. We could see them…

5 min
the sleeping dragon awakens

Summer 1987: The People’s Republic of China To call it a delegation was a stretch for me. But not for the People’s Republic of China. That’s where I found myself in the spring of 1987 as the only man to have ever carried a surfboard on the Great Wall of China. One old lady had asked through our translator what I was doing walking around with an airplane wing. I had been invited by the Chinese Government to lead an effort to introduce surfing to their country. China’s state run athletic programs, inhumane in their discipline, are designed for global athletic dominance. So I brought some real characters with me. Hawaiian flower Rell Sunn, who was stunning in her gold lamé jumpsuit, Willy Morris, a giant in the ‘Land of the Red…

5 min
crinkle cut technology

A team of researchers and surfers from the University of Wollongong have combined 3D-printing with scrupulous scientific testing to create an innovative new fin design. Professor Marc in het Panhuis, an expert in additive manufacturing at the University of Wollongong, had wondered for years how he could combine his love of surfing with his work as a researcher and academic, but it wasn’t until a visitor to his lab asked if he could 3D-print surfboard fins that he found an answer. From there, the Netherlands-born professor acquired funding and brought together a multidisciplinary team of researchers, along with experienced surfers from the Illawarra, to see whether they could create a niche manufacturing industry out of 3D-printed fins. “It turns out the actual process of 3D-printing fins is quite easy,” in het Panhuis…

9 min
the force

At the time of going to print, nine weeks after a globally publicised incident, Sunny Garcia remains on life support. A 911 call was made from a third party in the immediate wake of a nonphysical domestic incident. Assistance arrived several minutes later. The following isn’t about the incident. It’s not meant as an elegy to one of the great surfers in pro history. It’s more about a force once realised that has to invoke reaction. I know someone with a life cleaved open by breast cancer. Five years pitted against unbridled force. Confronting it, she invokes fear and reverence of a monster unleashed at the gates of the mind body and soul. One can only imagine the grip, try to imagine the pain, but then it swings your way and becomes…