The Rip Curl Pro at Bells Beach was and still is one of the most prestigious events on the world tour circuit. It separates the men from the boys and magnifies a surfer’s strengths and flaws from every angle (especially from up on the cliff). The list of winners at Bells are a who’s who of surfing history and include Michael Peterson, Mark Richards, Simon Anderson, Tom Curren, Tom Carroll, Damien Hardman, Potter, Lynch, Occy, Kelly, Sunny, Dorian, Fanning, Joel, Taj, AI. They all share one thing in common: exceptional technique and a flair for dissecting long right-hand walls.
1981 was a special year for surfing.
In 1981 Bells Beach really came to life, dawn’s light revealing some of the biggest, most perfect right-hand waves ever seen in surfing competition. This was a catalytic time in surfing history: Shaun Tomson and others riding single fins, MR and co on twinnies and Simon Anderson introducing the thruster.
Mark Richards said, “The wave face was just perfect. Not a drop of water out of place. there was this frenzy in the carpark – holy shit is this real or am I dreaming?”
The smooth arcs Simon drew on everything from monster walls to tiny runners on the final day proved his design in the most convincing of arenas. Lest it be overlooked, Simon’s surfing is pretty incredible with or without a tail fin.