On Saturday, September 8th Malibu lit up with a head high south swell at the perfect angle for first point. The level of surfing was off the charts with longboarders perched on the nose and shortboarders throwing buckets of spray. Hoots were even heard from the judges tent as one epic performance after another fired up the beach.
In partnership with Malibu Surfing Association (MSA) and the Classic Invitational, 11 teams competed and raised over $74,000 for SurfAid’s Mother and Child Health Programmes. Foam Ballers Team Captain Zen Gesner and his teammates David Chokachi, Jon Mone, and Tom Triggs earned the prestigious Fundraising Cup after raising an astonishing $20,569 for SurfAid. Funds will help ensure SurfAid partner communities have access to clean water & sanitation, basic healthcare, and improved nutrition. Each of these factors have been proven to reduce maternal and child mortality rates by as much as 70%.
Zen Gesner, captain of the winning Fundraising Cup team, The Foam Ballers, flying down a perfectly groomed Malibu wall. (Photo by Gray Lockwood)
Zen shared this about their win, “An amazing day, shared with a fine group of amazing people, brought together for a true humanitarian effort…it just doesn’t get any better than this!”
It did get better for the Foam Ballers, as they were one of six teams who made it to the finals. Joining them were last year’s SurfAid Cup champs Team Becker, Team MSA, Malaria Sucks, Vote Pierson for City Council, and first-time competitors and the 2018 SurfAid Cup Malibu Surf Champions, The Relik Groms!
Sponsored by Danny Errico and coached by John Welch, the all grom dream team included up and coming longboarders Brooke Carlson, Haley Otto, John Michael Van Hohenstein, and Kevin Skvarna. Joining the Relik Grom team as their pro was Reilly Stone who as an 18-year-old out of Santa Cruz relied on his classic footwork to help lead the team towards an impressive final score of 368.
Kevin Skvarna of team Relik with classic Malibu Style. Photo by Grey Lockwood
John emphasized having the kids work together and they adopted an acronym that John learned a long time ago; TEAM - Together Everybody Achieves More. Their goal was to simply have fun and then everything else would fall into place. John was stoked with the teams results, “We were super blessed to have taken first place in light of the amazing teams we surfed with. On behalf of each and every Team Relik Grom member, we would like to congratulate all the teams that competed. You were all amazing!”
SurfAid takes a similar collective approach when working with our communities. Funds raised through the SurfAid Cup directly translate to transformational change in our communities. SurfAid’s hand up – not a hand out philosophy is built to ensure lasting sustainability and the SurfAid Cup gives surfers a chance to work together to save the lives of mums and babies in places they love to surf.
SurfAid Cup Surfing Champions -The Relik Groms (L to R, Brooke Carlson, Haley Otto,
John Michael Van Hohenstein, Kevin Skvarna)
You can still support the teams here
Event photography captured by Grey Lockwood, Jerry Jaramillo and Tim Horton
2018 Event Photos:
SurfAid Cup Malibu 2018 Team Standings
Champions - Relik Groms
2nd - MSA
3rd - Becker
4th - Malaria Sucks
5th - Vote Pierson for City Council
6th - Foam Ballers
7th - Stay Committed Get Pitted
8th - Indoteak Design
9th - Dr. Dave’s Team
10th - Latigroms
11th - SurfAiders
SurfAid Cup Malibu 2018 Pro Roster:
2018 SurfAid Cup Malibu from SURFAID on Vimeo.
Thank you to everyone who supported the 2018 SurfAid Cup Malibu!
Next up, the SurfAid Cup Manly on September 28!
Special Thanks to: