COOLANGATTA, Queensland/AUS (Friday, January 20, 2012) – Joel Parkinson (AUS), 30, has been considered an ASP World Title threat since his rookie year amongst the world’s best in 2001. The man came along at a time when surfing was beginning to blend traditional carves with aerials and the kid from Coolangatta had the complete package. The subsequent decade witnessed Parkinson develop into one of the best surfers to ever stand foot on a board, boasting an incredible mix of style, unique lines, power surfing, tube prowess and aerial mastery.
These ten years have seen Joel on the event winner’s dais an impressive 10 times (including one as a wildcard in 1999), and finish Runner-Up in the world four times (2002, 2004, 2009, 2011). This phenomenal record has led many to consider Parkinson as “the best surfer to have never won the title.” Tracks Magazine caught up with Joel recently to pick his brain on exactly that issue and the iconic natural-footer was kind enough to expound on the demise of the midyear rotation, why this year’s Quik event will be run at Snapper and the season ahead. This…is their story…
Tracksmag.com: It’s only early days into the New Year and already we’ve seen video of you training up a storm?
Parko: I know, I didn’t think that was going to pop up. I’ve just been kinda cruising, I haven’t really been doing much at all – it’s all smoke and mirrors, mate. I haven’t been training that hard at all. It was only because Granger (Larson) was here. And Mitch (Parkinson) and Jack (Freestone), who all have the world juniors coming up and stuff – I jumped in on a few sessions with them and it’s been good that’s all. I just tagged along.
That almost football team atmosphere must be a nice change from the intense solo training? Especially with the young rippers you’ve mentioned?
For sure! It’s good. All Billabong riders training with Wes Berg, stoked to be having a few sessions where it’s not just me, you know? It’s good to gauge yourself against other guys. We surf a few heats as well and you get that thing where you say to yourself, “I don’t want to lose to a grommet” but Jack’s hard to beat. He’s friggin amazing in good little waves.
What’s it like on the body (like many, I wouldn’t know), physically working out and then actually surfing a heat? Does it loosen you up?
To a point it does, and then it turns shit. The next day we were all pretty sore; I had a surf and felt like crap. You know you feel like shit surfing the day after but when you start to feel good again – you feel really good.
It doesn’t look like your carrying any holiday fat?
Mate, I came home from Hawaii ready to sit on my arse and…
For full interview, check out Tracks Magazine’s ‘Parko Interview’
For more on JOEL PARKINSON, check out his ASP WORLD TITLE PROFILE
The first stop of the 2012 ASP World Title Series will be the Quiksilver and Roxy Pro Gold Coast from February 25 to March 7, 2012.
For more information, check out ASPWorldTour.com