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morey - weber  : surf contests, 1966 

Tome Morey - Dewey Weber :  Surfing Contests, 1966.

Morey, Tom: Surfer Tips Number - How to compete in 1966. Weber, Dewey: The Makaha Contest is the Worst!
Volume 7 Number 2, May 1966.
Copy courtesy of the Graham Sorensen Collection.

The article by Tom Morey, then the serving President of the USSA, is simultaneously futuristic and reactionary.
His suggestion, apparently never enacted at any USSA contest, of "paired heats" would not be instituted until 1977 at the first Stubbies Contest at  Burleigh Heads, then described as "Peter Drouyn’s Man on Man system."
Morey explained:
"The 'paired surfing scoring method' categorizes the surfers' abilities and makes it easy for judges to pick a winner when two excellent surfers are matched against each other in one heat."
It is unknown if Drouyn ever read of Morey's idea.

Alternatively, his second innovation, "timed" surfing, had already been used in Morey's Noseriding Contest at Ventura in July 1965.
In this contest the rider was timed by stopwatch while on the front 25% of the board"  (designated by a coloured deck patch or band), with awards for the longest individual ride and the accumulated time over a maximum 14 waves.
In 1966, Morey substantially broadened the criteria-"surfers with the most accumulated time standing up on the board for wave opportunities will be the winners."

Essentially, at its core, this was a paddling contest- the surfer who rode the longest distance and was the fastest to paddle back to the take-off zone to catch another wave would accumulate the most points.
Incredibly, from a 21st century perspective, this approach, without any consideration of surfing performance, was regressive.
More immediately, it was in marked contrast to the intensive analysis of performance surfing currently explored by Australian competitors, the elite of whom were soon to arrive in California for the 1966 World Contest.

Perhaps bouyed by the enthusiasm and wide exposure of the earlier noseriding contest, it appears that no American competitor recognised the reactionary element of this format, put into use at the contest  and attended. XXXXXXXXXXXX

Dewey Weber's article on Makaha voices many of the ongoing concerns of competition surfers about the structure and format of surfing contests at this time.

South Africa
Ron Perrott's article on South Africa initiated the first major controversy for the Surfer staff.
In the body of the article, Perrott appeared somewhat apologetic for the policy of Apartide:
"Half believing some of the more distorted 'facts' on South Africa prevalent in Australia, I was completely unprepared for the friendliness and courtesy received from all sections of the community - whether Indian, Bantu or white South African." - page 65.

However, one photograph and its caption, "Durban's beaches are segregated so this native youngster can't join these three surfers ... for a little fun in the surf" (possibly added by the editor), produced a unprecedented response.
In susbequent editions, a number of readers suggested that rascism was an unsuitable topic for a surfing magazine.
Twelve months later, this controversy would appear relatively minor, compared to the response to We're Tops Now, by Australian, John Witzig.
The article was originally published, with a far less confronting title, as Nat vs. Nuuhiwa ... How Do We Compare?
Surfing World Volume 8 Number 4, pages 10 to 13. January 1967.

In 1985, professional surfers buoycotted contests in South Africa in protest at that country's, now repealed, racial legislation.

Inca Surfer
The ceramic figure, illustrated in the Pipeline column on page 75, has never been referenced in any of the subsequent literatue on the origns of surf riding.

Rusty Miller Interview, pages 25-31.
John Pennings: Big Drop at Little Avalon, pages 33-35.
Dewey Weber: The Makaha Contest is the Worst!, pages 57-61.
USSA 1966 Ratings, pages 40-41.
Bill Cleary: Honolulu Bay, pages 42-49.
Richard Safaday: Some Like It Smooth, pages 54-57.
Extolling the virtues of a "smooth style", the article was perhaps a response to the "aggressive" style, as said to be promoted by Australian surfers.
Ron Perrott: "Crocodiles," Zulus and Surf Suid Afrika, pages 58-65.
Pipeline, pages 75.
Griffin and Stoner: The Banzia Pipeline, pages 83-90.


Page 21
by Tom Morey, President, USSA

This year the United States Surfing Association competition program offers surfers the most exciting contest season ever scheduled.
There is something in the program for every- one from a Rusty Miller to the youngest gremmie just starting his surfing career.
For the first time, the domination of the contest circuit by just a few super stars has been eliminated by breaking competitors into several categories (see page 40) .
There're also semi-professional and professional contests that I will come under OSSA judging. With plenty of prizes, recog- ' nition and competitive fun, I feel it's more than worth while I for the contestant to know how to attack each contest -how
to compete.
Whether a surfer is after fame, fortune or just plain fun, he'll have to know the rules backward and forward this year to really excel. The programs are different in many ways.
For example, the AA and AAA contests, for judging purposes, will be of two types: "timed" and "paired eliminations."
The "timed" rules will apply for professional and half of the AA-AAA contests.
And the rules are really simple: surfers with the most accumulated time standing up on the board for wave opportunities will be the winners.
A surfer can pick up time in a number of ways, depending on the particular contest rules.
For example, time may be gained simply by riding the wave at places like the Banzai Pipeline, or by riding the nose at places like Malibu or Ventura, or a combination of the two at a spot like Rincon.
The "paired eliminations" rules for the other half of the AA and AAA contests are quite different, and these contest competitors (who are now thoroughly seeded) will be matched against one another and judged one at a time.
That is, there will be ten- to fifteen-minute heats with just two surfers in the water.
Every ride will be judged and scored on a basis of: 1. wave selection and position, 2. repertoire, 3. form, and 4. balance.
A score of from zero to ten points will be awarded for each of these four factors - making a total of 40 points possible for each ride.
The "paired surfing scoring method" categorizes the surfers' abilities and makes it easy for judges to pick a winner when two excellent surfers are matched against each other in one heat.
Rules for single A, open and small club competition are probably best described as "heat elimination."
Basically, this is the same as in the paired elimination for the professionals' AAA and AA.
The judges will give contestants from zero to 20 points for each wave they ride.
The scores will not be broken down into categories, but the determining factors in picking up points will be wave selection and position, repertoire, form and balance.
For these contests, there'll probably be four or five surfers at a time in one heat.
Those, basically, are the rules and, as many top surfers will tell you, the ones who do best in contests are the ones who know the rules.
Here are a few hints for doing better in contests:
It's extremely important that the board you use is suited for surf conditions that prevail during the contest.
This is particularly true in timed events.
A good example is last year's nose riding contest at Ventura where contestants were judged by exactly how many seconds they could stay on the nose.
If you're in big surf, be sure you've got a board suited to it, and conversely, in small surf have the proper equipment.
Anyone keeping a close tab oh last year's contest results probably noted that the locals usually did the best in any particular contest.
Just check the results of Huntington, Malibu, Pacific Beach, Makaha, among others, and I'm sure it will occur to you that practice before the contest at the exact competition site is important to doing well in a contest.
Get to know the break you're going to surf and know it well.
When you're out in the water in that numbered T-shirt, remember that the judges are scoring you not on your past reputation or what you may do in that big surf two weeks from Thursday.
You're being judged on what you're doing at that moment, so make the most of it.
Be on time for your heat, and when you paddle out, surf as hard as you can and as well as you can during the short few minutes most heats last.
It may be consoling to know that if your board is slippery, your trunks binding, or if you're tired, weak, cold or hungry, you are probably typical of many others in the contest.
But also realize that only one surfer is going to win.
The true champion is the one who always has a little more to offer, a little more competitive fight than the other fellow.
Learn a nice, smooth repertoire, because that's what really impresses judges.
There are hundreds of surfers who can hang ten, do bottom turns, top turns, etc.
The winner of a "judged contest" is the surfer who can put his maneuvers together gracefully and with taste.
In short, the smooth stylish surfer with plenty of graceful, fluid maneuvers has the edge in any contest.
What it boils down to, I think, is that the surfer must have a proper blend of "riding the board" and "riding the wave," as welI as a thorough knowledge of the rules of his event.
With this blend, you have a pretty good chance of being a surfing champion.
Page 27

Rusty Miller and windy Sunset Beach.
Page 30
Rusty Miller and Mickey Dora, Sunset Beach.

Page 31

Rusty Miller, Makaha.

Page 36

When Dewey Weber and the famous Makaha surf first met, it was obvious they were meant for each other.
With hot sectIons running into flat shoulders, Makaha was ideal for Dewey's style.
A half dozen quick steps and he was on the nose blasting through the curl, and then with incredible quickness, he was on the tail block jamming a radical cutback.
Dewey's reputation as a hotdogger was already tops when the Makaha International Contest was established.
In 1956, Dewey first entered as a junior but ran into the kind of bad luck that frequently plagues Californians in the Makaha contest. Dewey had caught his allotted six waves and the consensus of surfers on the beach was that the little hotdogger from the South Bay had won hands down.
His flag went up on the beach- indicating that the allotted rides had been completed- so Dewey caught the next wave into shore. As he walked up to the judge's stand, he was as stunned as anyone to learn that he had BEEN DISQUALIFIED FOR RIDING ONE TOO MANY WAVES- the one he took into shore!
But undaunted, Dewey, like many top California surfers, returned several times to the Makaha contest.
Last year Dewey battled his way through the semi-finals into the finals where he turned on his famous hot-dogging style.
The all-Hawaiian judges picked him eighth.
Dewey has much better luck in non-Hawaiian contests and last year finished fourth in the United States Surfing Association competition.
Dewey's been a top performer in major competition for ten years -a record few other surfers can match.
So Dewey's pretty well qualified to say:

This top photograph was printed on page 25 of the previous edition of Surfer, in a review of the contest.
The photograph was captioned:.. while this ripple crowded with five surfres was typical of the waves during preliminaries of the Makaha International.
That's George Downing, number 5, who picked up his third Makaha title. Cleary photo.
For the article see Duke and Makaha Contests, Surfer, Volume 7 Number 1, March 1966.

Page 37

Yes, from the viewpoint of the guy out there in the water with the numbered T-shirt, the Makaha contest is the worst in surfing competition: a glaring example why surfing doesn't have the acknowledgment and recognition given other competitive sports on the international sports scene.

The contest is fine as a crowd event because that's exactly what it is.
This was underscored by a Honolulu newspaper, The Advertiser, that pointed out during the last contest that heat winners were the ones, in most cases, who impressed the spectators.
Little mention was given to the ability or performance shown by the competitors and, in fact, the newspaper article focused on incidents that were "humorous for the spectators."
This typical news coverage underscores that crowd-pleasing ability overshadows wave ability and performance.
Twenty-four competitors jammed into the 30-minute heats pretty well assures the spectators of humorous incidents.

Among the top-notch competitors who year after year show up at the contest, there's general agreement that the regulation rules and scoring methods are as outmoded as the old redwood plank of bygone surfing days.
The Makaha contest is famous for its judging prejudices and yet year after year the big name surfers, and a lot of little name surfers, flock to Hawaii to sign up for a competitive meet that is actually detrimental to the development of surfing.
It's somewhat puzzling, but I feel the contest is supported by surfers strictly out of enthusiasm for competition as well as the honor, fame and now fortune that goes to the winner.

Page 38

(Top left) Dewey Weber surfed his way to the finals of the Malibu contest that featured maximum heats of five surfers.
"It was worth entering that contest just to be alone on a few Malibu waves" commented Dewey.
(Bottom left) Dewey hangs in mid-air after being bounced by the Makaha backwash.
The loose board was formerly occupied by a less talented contestant.
Photos by Ron Stoner.

Page 39

Take my case: I competed last year because I really love surfing competition and, too, I felt that by competing I'm more qualified to form opinions about the contest and surfing as a whole.
As a competitor, Makaha's shortcomings became quite clear, and yet I was able to see the great potential of this contest as a truly international meet.
Certainly I would be willing to give my full support if Makaha officials and the competitors would get together and- with the help of the United States Surfing Association - take advantage of the "opportunity to improve."
But with the Hawaiian attitude, the chances of this are slim.

Surfing's changed an awful lot in the last ten years, and yet the regulations governing last year's Makaha championships differed only slightly from those used in 1956 - the first time I entered the contest.
Some of the obviously out-moded regulations have been dropped, but plenty of outdated principles and even a few ambiguous rules have been added.
The regulations no longer limit the number of waves a contestant may ride, but the mass of contestants (last year, 550 signed up) make it virtually impossible for anyone contestant to ride "too many waves."
Discontinued, too, is the use of distance markers.
However, distance is still a key factor in accumulating points from the judges.

Makaha's regulauons were set up thirteen years ago on the premise that big-wave riding was the only true test of surfing ability. Rules and scoring system accommodated the then prevalent method of scoring surfing contests on wave size and points were accumulated on the takeoff and ability to stay trim with the emphasis on the distance of the ride.
And so for thirteen years the emphasis has stayed on big-wave riding - giving points for the height of the wave and the distance of the ride.
Yet most of the Makaha competition has been run in small surf, but the judges' system still stresses the big wave, and no rules have been set up to accommodate small surf experts.

In order to obtain points, according to the Makaha rules, a surfer must stay in the critical part of the wave (the hook next to the breaking section) at all times.
This may be a logical way to ride a big wave, but it can't be applied to surf under eight feet.
In small. surf keeping the surfer in the most critical part of the wave limits his opportunity to perform.
But any Makaha competitor who takes off, trims, limits his maneuvers and rides all the way to shore, racks up more points than the surfer who leaves the most critical part of the wave by cutting back, climbing, dropping, even though this surfer throughout the ride returns again and again to the critical portion of the wave.

Wally Froseith clarified, I think, Makaha's judging criteria when he said, "A surfer who catches a wave outside and rides it all the way to the shore definitely has more opportunity to perform and will, on the average get more points."

Wally's statement underscores the emphasis placed on distance and also points out Makaha's ambiguous judging premises. Officials have never explained, as far as I know, how the judges determine if "opportunity to perform" is present.
And if it is, how do the judges determine if the surfer takes full advantage of this opportunity to perform?


This is especially unfair to surfers, considering there's usually a dozen, even two dozen, surfers in the water in each heat.
If a surfer is lucky enough to catch the largest wave in a 30-minute heat and have it all to himself - ride it all the way to the beach - his score should not be based on luck, but rather on his ability in taking advantage of "the opportunity to perform."
That is, how well did the surfer execute his ability on the wave?

Just about all the contestants agree, as far as I know, Makaha's emphasis on height of wave ridden and the distance of the ride overshadows contestants' performance on the wave.
In my opinion, a true international champion doesn't purposely place limits on his ability to perform.
The champion, for my money, is a surfer who displays not only endurance, judgment and balance, but also is outstanding in the water.
He's the surfer who gets the most out of each and every wave by pushing his ability to perform to the fullest.
And so since the rules at Makaha limit the ability to perform, I don't feel they produce a champion in the sporting sense of the

There was something new in last year's contest: points were deducted for unsportsmanlike conduct.
Now no one can argue that good sportsmanship has a place in every competitive sport.
However, the way this rule was applied at many contestants didn't even know about it until after completion of the competitive events.
And it's still not clear to me what guide lines were used by the judges in determining, in their opinion, what actually was a deliberate lack of sportsmanship in the water.
The judges didn't define what they meant by unsportsmanlike conduct, but they still deducted the points.
In many cases, surfers lost points when, attempting to get the most out of the wave, they accidentally bumped the rail of another competitor's board.
In the judges' opinion, this often was construed as a deliberate act of unsportsmanlike conduct and may explain why many surfers from the mainland and Hawaii were knocked out early in the contest, even though they showed excellent ability to perform- and weren't even aware of any deliberate unsportsmanlike acts.

Surfing is progressing, I think, to the point where it can obtain the recognition given other competitive sports.
However, even though I'm one of surfing's greatest boosters, I can't honestly .say that the sport deserves that recognition now. Every competitive sport, whether a team or individual, has a governing body setting forth uniform rules and regulations that apply to meets.
And surfing doesn't have this.
Even though the sport does have such a body - the United States Surfing Association.

The USSA has, and is continuing to make, a needed attempt to standardize rules and regulations used in surfing meets, but lack of support, principally by the surfing public and contest promoters, has blocked this.
And so it's impossible for the USSA to enforce uniform rules at every surfing meet, whether in California, Hawaii or New York.

A surfing competitor can surf in one contest under one set of rules and then enter a contest in another city or state where a completely different set of rules apply.
This condition, I think, is uncommon in any other sport - yet it happens every day in surfing.

I believe every competing surfer wants surfing to be accepted as a competitive sport.
I know I do, but we must remember that to reach that degree of sophistication, surfers must strive for the quantities and qualities found in other sports.
We must learn to profit from past mistakes, the use of outdated regulations, poor scoring systems.
Surfers must take action to eliminate contests run under rules that hinder favorable acceptance of the sport by the general public.

Above all, we must keep in mind that blame for badly-run contests such as Makaha should not entirely be put upon shoulders of a small group of officials or sponsors.
We, the competitors, share this blame because we let it happen, we were a part of it - and a lot of us probably will be part of it again unless it's changed by us.

Page 40


The 1966 ratings of the United States Surfing Association mark a milestone in surfing competition that probably means the end of contests dominated by just a few top surfers.
For the first time, the USSA has segregated surfers into three categories- AAA, AA and A.
This is similar to international ski ratings and means that the top competitors will battle each other in contests, while lesser-rated surfers will compete in separate AA and A heats.
USSA Competition Chairman Hoppy Swarts pointed out that not all contests on the circuit this year will be segregated.
He said there will be a number of open contests where the three categories will compete together.
That is, the AAA, AA and A surfers will be in the same heats.
But details of these open contests are still being worked out, Swarts said, and will be released later.
Under this system, surfers can move up - and also down - the competition ladder.
For example, Single A surfers can, by racking up contest points, move up to AA and even AAA ratings.
The same holds true for AA surfers.
Triple A surfers will, of course, have to defend their top position - or drop back into the AA or Single A division.
The placings were computed on how surfers fared in contests in 1964 and 1965.
A two-year spread was used so that a top surfer would not lose his position after merely one bad contest year.
Here's the list for men, women and juniors.
Unfortunately, space doesn't permit running the Single A competitors in each division as the list runs into hundreds of names.

[Triple A ratings only]
1. Rusty Miller
2. Skip Frye
3. Donald Takayama
4. Dewey Weber
S. Corky Carroll
6. Rich Chew
7. Joey Cabell
8. Phil Edwards

9. Steve Bigler
10. Mark Martinson
11. Robert August
12. Mike Doyle
13. Robert Kooken
14. John Peck
1 S. Bobby Patterson
16. Mickey Munoz
1. Joyce Hoffman
2. Joey Hamasaki
3. Nancy Nelson
4. Josette Lagardere
5. Dee Dee Arevalos
6. Margo Scotton
7. Linda Benson
8. Gail Yarbrough (Williams)

Page 41
1. David Nuuhiwa
2. Denny Tompkins
3. Pete Johnson
4. Herb Torrens
5. Mike Stevenson
6. Alf Laws
7. Herbie Fletcher
8. Dale Struble
9. Dru Harrison
10. Dickie Moon
11. Mike Purpus
12.. Bill Gray
13. Greg Tucker
14. Jim Irons
15. Bill Hamilton
16. Steve Schlickenmeyer
1. Mike Doyle
2. Pete Peterson
3. Don Hansen
4. Bob Moore
5. Jack Iverson
6. Mickey Munoz 
7. Steve Boehne
8. Hobie Alter 
9. Jim Graham 
10. Joe Metzger 
11. Rusty Miller
12. Corky Carroll
13. Nick Carollo
14. Sam Harwood

Page 58
"Crocodiles," Zulus and Surf Suid Afrika
By Ron Perrott
Page 61

Durban's not always crowded, however, and during April before the July crowds, it frequently looks like this as a native carrying stacked surf riders strolls down an almost deserted main street on the strand.

Page 62

Durban's beaches are segregated so this native youngster can't join these three surfers strolling along Dairy Beach near the West Street Groyne for a little fun in the surf. 

Page 65

Half believing some of the more distorted "facts" on South Africa prevalent in Australia, I was completely unprepared for the friendliness and courtesy received from all sections of the community - whether Indian, Bantu or white South African.

Page 75.
No, this picture isn't printed sideways.
This smalI statue represents an old Peruvian showing off his belIyboarding style on a reed mat back in the old days of surfing - realIy the old days.
It's a pre-Inca ceramic piece from the Nazca dynasty - and that's back even before Pete Peterson's time.
Nazca is a town near Cerro Azul on the coast of Peru, and the statuette indicates that surling certainly isn't anything new under the Peruvian sun.
The ceramic surfer is on display at Graciela Laffi's private museum and the photo comes from Peruvian surfing enthusiast Jose Antonio "Gringo" De LavalIe.

Page 76

Honolulu police are trying extra hard to crack the case of the missing automobile hood ornament.
Because the 11-inch, 5-pound statuette was taken from the car of Duke Kahanamoku.
The ornament depicts Duke riding a surf- board.
A hundred-dollar reward, with no questions asked, has been posted for its return.
The ornament was torn from the hood of Duke's Lincoln Continental while the car was parked for just a few moments near the Edgewater Hotel at Waikiki Beach.
The Duke, who had loaned his car to a friend, was in New York at the time to appear on the Ed Sullivan show and attend the opening of the Swimming Hall of Fame in Florida.
It's especially tragic because the ornament was hand-carved 30 years ago by an artist now dead.
There is no existing mold.
Commented the Duke: "You know, I place great sentimental value on that statue, perhaps more than on many of my other awards." Considering all the baubles, trophies and medals that Duke picked up as the Island's greatest surfer, swimmer and Olympic Champion - that's quite a statement.
The Duke added: "I'm sure no surfer or Island fellow took it, because no one would do such a thing."

Greg Noll Surfboards: the CAT is coming, pages 6-7.

JacobsSurfboards: This is the Jacobs 422, page 11.

Hansen Surfboards: 1st in competition for 1965 Rusty Miller - Rusty rides a Doyle Model, page 22.

South Coast Surfboards: The Tip Rider, page 68.

Jacks Surfboards: Jack's all new bellyboard $39.95, page 77.

Steve Shaw: Surfboard Builders' Manual and Kustom-Kit (Shaped blank, cloth, resin, fin, etc.) $92.00-$95.00, page 73.

Bahama Shop: Mexican Huaraches, page 81.

Dolphin Sportswear Company: Duke Kahanamoku Speed Suits, page 82.
Cropped image, right.

Surfboards Hawaii, Encinitas: 1/1300 (1300 boards built in the last year), page 82.

Con Surfboards: new Wing Nose model, page 95.

Hang-Ten: Phil Edwards and Greg Noll ride the big surf, page 99.

Volume 7 Number 2 
May 1966.

Jock Sutherland, Pipeline, 1964.
Photograph: Ron Stoner.

Copy courtesy of the Graham Sorensen Collection.

Rusty Miller and windy Sunset Beach.
Page 27.

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