Hello Helen and TotalSUP. The event was created as a celebration for the Longboard SUP style of surfing and for those who are passionate for that style of SUP surfing. The Cosmic Experience event is being held in Sanur, Bali, 7-10 April 2023. As most know, the waves in Bali are often described as mechanical perfection with that in mind, each competitor will be riding a similiar longboard SUP style and length board meaning that the event will come down to the purity of skills on offer and the interpretation of the judging criteria! The skills are a 50/50 mix of traditional and performance longboard manoeuvres. The quality of the SUP surfers attending will ensure not only the surfing will be epic but the event will be too! Back in 2020 when we were due to run the first Cosmic Experience event, but due to the pandemic we had to cancel at the last minute. However, we did run a non-competitive event for the crew that were already in Bali. It was a great event.
The Cosmic Experience is also a shared philosophy
with the other event organisers Scotty Mckercher
, the owner of the Smik brand and Jonni Morrison Decker
, who is based in Bali. Jonni is the event local correspondent, it is he who is the water sports expert and runs the Rip Curl School of Surfing in Sanur. If I can talk about Rick Weeks
, who is a bit “older” and he must be on a different type of drug (lol). He is worthy of the recognition with age in that he is still froth’n in life and surf and another which suggests the SUP sport respects its “elders”, whilst showing that staying focussed and healthy allows one to be able to continue doing what you love till it’s all over… It’s also good to give back to a sport that has provided so much and added to life’s journey.
Can you tell us about yourself? And the famous Longboard SUP revolution?
I’ve surfed for over 55 years on both short and longboards. I started SUP surfing about 15 years ago. The Longboard SUP Revolution (LSR) was born out of my love for the longboard SUP style! For me longboard SUP style surfing has it all with a balance of performance and traditional manoeuvres, which is also the judging criteria that was established exclusively for the longboard SUP category. The fact that the category is so inclusive of all ages and skill levels has led to the surge in category’s increasing popularity. Back in the late 60’s there was a Shortboard Revolution when surfboards design changed and surfers stopped riding longboards and started riding shorter boards. The LSR is the opposite of this, we have gone from riding short SUP boards to longboard SUPs and in doing so a longboard SUP revolution evolved.
The LSR facebook group started about 6 years ago to promote the establishment of a longboard SUP style of surfing category and in doing so, get that category included in all SUP surfing events held from local SUP clubs up to State and National Titles in Australia. The category has become so popular in Australia that a longboard SUP community has been established with a number of events now exclusively longboard SUP events. The movement is now being established worldwide with the APP World Tour committing to run 3 longboard SUP events in 2023. We hope to get an APP World Tour event in Australia, possibly even next year.
Back to the 2023 Cosmic Experience comp, what is the format?
We will be running both men’s and women’s Elite and Weekend Warriors categories. We also have some of the best longboard SUP surfers from Australia and around the world coming to Bali for the event. Word has it that there are both Australian and World champions coming to the event, stay tuned for details.
Winners of each category will receive classic Cosmic trophies
and we hope to offer prize money as well. The winners will also be basking in the glory of winning the Cosmic Experience event. We have sponsors LSR, Smik, Starboard
, The Standup Paddle Surf shop, Quobba fins and Drift resort on Kuta Lombok. We are hoping to get a few more Corporate sponsors too.