(Questions by shambles)
What was it like growing up and learning to surf on the west coast of Ireland?
Growing up where I did was great and I wouldn’t change a thing. Ireland is freezing and grey but the waves and the people are one of a kind, everyone knows each other here and there is a great village spirit. Luckily, I chose to pick up the boog when I was young because of a local guy call Ross Mc Dermot, the only other bodyboarder on the beach at the time. I saw the standups pumping fat waves out the back and Ross would be pulling into these thick shore breaks and that got me keen.
Where have you been surfing abroad and how was it compared to Ireland’s west coast?
I’ve been lucky enough to travel to and surf waves on all five continents but there are still so many places I want to go to. Personally, I get the most out of the travel experience by heading off on my own. It is amazing to be in the sun and be surfing in warm water but there is always a point on my trip when I think to myself, ‘the waves aren’t as good as home’.
What is your most memorable experience to date in the ocean?
I find it hard to store all the great waves I’ve scored in my mind so I guess the most recent memorable wave would be my tow wave at Mullagmore at the end of last winter. The odds were against me that day and everything seemed to be going wrong but I paddled out at the end of the session and got towed into the perfect spot in the wave and it folded over me and gave me a view that I’ll never forget. Four hours later I was on a flight to the Philippines with a big smile on my face.
Goals for the future?
In bodyboarding it is to keep progressing, whether it is in heavy waves or fine tuning my technical ability. I’m still waiting for the day that my bodyboarding starts to go backwards or even stands still but thankfully that day hasn’t arrived and I still feel like I’m progressing. My goals in life would be to set up my own business and share my love of good food, to keep surrounding myself with positive real people, which I’m lucky to have around me at the moment.
Your new boards seem to be going well for you, are you happy with them?
Couldn’t be happier with my boards. I’m surfing smaller boards at moment and i feel very confident with my equipment these days. I have used a wide variety of shapes, brands and sizes through the years but the 2014 Science launch is by far the best board Ive ever used, it goes well in all conditions especially on our heavy slabs. Stoked to be riding for Science.