A PHD In PWC

posted by / Photos / May 29, 2008



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A tiny isolated island. A rich four-star paradise full of waves. Great fishing. Ping-pong. And plenty of PWC assists. There was only one place for pro surfers to post up this May. That’s right: Nantucket. Let the top-45 have Tavarua. Several of the East Coast’s top talents enjoyed three weeks of fly living for the Red Bull Night School, a specialty training camp that gathered eight PWC specialists —Sam Hammer, Raven Lundy, Lucas Rodgers, Randy Townsend, Jason Reagan, Jamie Moran, Billy Hume and Jeff Myers — to educate eight two-man teams of northeastern surfers in the art of “the Tow-At.” The goal? To beef up the ranks, the range — and the performance level — for this summer’s second annual Red Bull Night Riders event in Atlantic City, New Jersey. “We pulled the best tow-at guys from the Outer Banks up to Jersey,” explains organizer Jack Fleming, “and had them school the best northeastern and New England surfers we could find. They each had four days of total focus to try and learn. And I think we found four teams who can really perform.”But it was more than just work. With two mansions filled with fine food and drink, eight big screens and untold cases of taurine-packed platinum bullets, you couldn’t say guys were always relaxing, but they were certainly enjoying themselves. And with an isolated ten acres of beachfront to themselves, so were the neighbors. Furthermore, they could leave the skis in the water, ready to jet when the urge struck. And, as a result, they scored everything from two-foot slop to head-high glass — and surprising few injuries or mishaps.“I think there were only two broken boards, which isn’t bad,” says Hammer. “Going that fast, there’s always lot of wipeouts. But the guys had surfing ability. Get two guys on a team who know what they’re doing, they can learn a lot fast. And after we showed ‘em what to do, it was just working off one another and honing skills.” Now Rhode Island’s Jamie Risser and Greg Levy, Massachusetts’ Mark Driscoll and Jamie Hosker, and two New Hampshire teams — Steve O’Hara and Mike Stanek; Mike Paugh and Adam Coates — will get a chance to take on their teachers in the main event, tentatively set for August 15. And to make sure they put on a blistering display as lit-up and outrageous as the Atlantic City skyline, Red Bull’s strategically placing four skis across the northeast for practice purposes. But if the thought of a swarm of gassed-up pros whipping through lineups all summer has you scared, cool your jets. “We know a lot of surfers aren’t into tow-ats,” says Fleming. “That’s why we did the camp in Nantucket by ourselves. And that’s why we only do one comp in Atlantic City where everything’s already over-the-top — instead of a bunch up and down the coast.”Sounds like everybody learned something.RED BULL NIGHT SCHOOL TEAMS:Liquid Dreams:
Trevor Fitzgerald
Scotty Drake
Natty Graham
Sam BoardmanPioneers:
Steve O’Hara
Mike StanekCinnamon Rainbows:
Sashi Lyford
Doug WrightBrickhouse:
Mark Driscol
Jamie Hosker7Ply – Rhode Island:
Greg Levy
Jamie RisserZapstix:
Mike Paugh
Adam Coates

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