Source Documents
midget farrelly : contests, 1969 

Midget Farrelly : Contests, 1969.
Midget Farrelly: Contests.
Surfing World
Volume 13 Number 1, 1969-1970?

ear the end of 1969 or early 1970 (?), Midget argues for the development of professional surfing contests, ideally in large and quality waves and breaking away from the amateur representative contest format.

Page ?
Midget Farrelly

Australia, the southern hemishere's capital is in danger of becoming a second-rate surfing nation, "new-era" fanatics and the take note.
What this country is in dire need of is an internation­al contest.
I don't mean a world contest, not necessarily an equally represented international contest, not necessarily an A.S.A. contest.
Why, those humble surfing countries of France, Peru, and Mexico have internationals and sponsor surfers.
The mighty Hawaii has its annual Makaha and the Duke is achieving an international status unmatched.

France and the other countries recognize the stimulus these
events give to their surfing standard.
Filipe Pomar graduated from international in Peru to win the World Contest in 1965.
Now that competitive surfing in Australia is Iike league football in structure it is tending to
  become humdrum.
The A.S.A. has
achieved competitive surfing for the average; for the average surfer, to the average surfer, by the average surfer.

The average surfer now needs to be stimulated, to diversify in style and be shown new techniques.
The average surfer needs to see exciting radical, free ripping surfing that
only comes with experienced, travelling pros, riding big and quality waves.
These guys should be seen riding at Bells or Forresters, or Maragrets.
Waves, big waves are what put surfers to
the test, make judges think, make the crowd roar and look wild on T.V.

Judging this event would be difficult for the average A.S.A. judge ans a smaller than usual panel of versatile surfing-judging
type people, who have travelled to surfing countries outside Australia would be necessary to furnish any half-fair result.

The type of
Australian surfers we would need to compete would be more in the class of Peter Drouyn, John Monie and Ricky Tyota, guts up and ready for any­thing.
Namely big waves.

The people I have mentioned are are merely indicative of what we would need at least to compare with visiting surfers.
I wouldn't exclude all the "names" or "stars" some of whom are specialists, but have chosen to mention those three because of their all-around ability in waves over five feet.

These people and many others seldom show their real talent, Drouyn excluded, because of two foot finals and preliminaries; "we have to run it because: the troph­ies have to be presented, the crowd has paid, the tent marshal can't stay another day and there isn't a long weekend for months etc. etc

May I digress further and say the the national titles run by the A.S.A. are exciting if they are at Bells or Margaret, "but the other states must have a go you know," and God help anyone who  didn't qualify in the two foot state titles, not necessarily myself by guys like Monie and the rest.
Hooray for "Aussie having the best surfers" and all that bull.
How about some faces Australians have never seen.
Hawaiians like Ben Aipa, Reno Abelliro, Cabell, and Barry Kanaiapuni, Peru's Pomar who is really a good big wave surfer and California's Rolf Arness and Doyle and the rest.
The event should be based not on having countries compete (though the sponsors may like the idea) but on individuals fighting it out in a holiday atmos­phere, using styles and boards we have never seen.

The Duke Kahanamoku strives to do the things I have set out while honouring the name and the now dead man with a real champion.
Hawaii has the waves and in our own way so do we.
Its a matter of timing and luck, no different story anywhere.

Internationals have greatly improved the surfing of countries like Peru and France though in culture they are not ocean going when it comes to board and body.
In Australia we are at the bottom of the Pacific and isolated but for the jet routes.
Contrary to popular belief, the world doesn't follow Australia in anything, exceptions being the magazine orientated masses of the U.S. and a few texts in New Zealand.

Surfing is not restricted in any real way to groups or countries, only flavoured.
The waves dictate and the individual's interpretation of how they should best be ridden is influenced by knowledge and beliefs.

I wouldn't go surfing in two foot, twenty-five mile an hour onshore for fun even, let alone compete.
To hell with "but the best can ride slop too" let the internal contests sort themselves out.
Meanwhile let us have a nice international contest, let's get a few sponsors and fly these guys out and get on with it in ten foot surf, at least, and see what really happens to our image.

How about Bells on that ten foot day, natural surfing environ­ment and big waves?

Please don't "run the women's when the surf is best and save the blue ribbon event for the high tide mush."
The Duke is run in half a day with twenty-four compet­itors, four heats and a final.
Imagine the great surfing before and after the events though.
Wouldn't you love to see Reno ripping on his seventeen inch special.
The "our boys are besters" could have their day, but mean­while surfing would evolve that little bit further and further.

Who cares who wins, as long as the waves are big, the judging reflects the surfing and everyone is on.

Surfing World
Volume 13 Number 1, 1969.

Midget Farrelly, facing page.


Geoff Cater (2018) : Midget Farrelly : Contests, 1969.