1987 Phil’s boys Matt and Simon in their teens enjoying the school holidays and sunshine of the Gold Coast.
Short boards, big logo’s and bright colours was the order of the day, while those perfect peeling waves of Snapper, Kirra and Currumbin were ideal for honing skills.
The boys are both Goofies but it may not have necessarily been the case. Phil had an obsession with Goofy footers, in fact he honestly believed that backhand surfing looked more radical. Surfers like Wayne Lynch, Col Smith from Nth Narrabeen and Peninsula surfer Alan ( Wally) Tibballs had the eye catching moves of the 70’s (namely the backhand reentry).
In a breakout period Tibbs blitzed the Quiksilver Trials in 1977 to win a spot in the Rip Curl Pro and then with another outstanding performance was the clear winner of the 1980 Victorian Surfing titles. Col Smith was another larger than life colourful character. Although he was narrowly beaten in the Booming waves of the ’73 Margaret river Aussie titles he continued to dominate the surf scene for the next ten years. As a sideline he raced cars on the Sydney circuit and at last report had become an excellent ballroom dancer(that must have come from his mums side of the family). These guys were the original rubber men with bodies that could bend and defy gravity.
I didn’t observe close at hand but Phil occasionally tells me with pride he coerced both of his boys from day one to turn their back on being natural footers. It amazes me the lengths some parents will go to with regards to kids and sport!