The Cape Big Wave Trust (CBWT) is an organization that has been put in place to represent, improve safety and protect the interests of all the big wave surfers who regularly charge out at Dungeons and Sunset in Cape Town. We all remember the controversy between the CBWT and the WSL last year, while many surfers were in for an international big wave competition at Dungeon’s, some said it wasn’t fair, as only a few entries were allocated to the locals who surf the spot regularly. Plans for the event were canned as a result.
But, this is a new year and the Cape Big Wave Trust (CBWT) recently met to vote in a new committee, with some epic plans for South African big wave surfing.
Matt Bromley, practising his preach, stoked to be onboard with the CBWT. © Alan van Gysen
On the 20th of April, members of The Cape Big Wave Trust (CBWT) met in Kommetjie. This initiative was formed a few years back as collective platform for SA big wave surfers, an organization in place to protect the interests of South African big wave surfers. It represents all people who regularly surf Dungeons and Sunset in Cape Town.
A new committee was voted in to head CBWT, lead by Mike Schlebach as chairman. He is joined by Ross Lindsay, Matt Bromley, Mickey Duffus, Phil Nel and Frank Solomon.
With the majority of the SA big wave community present, important topics such as water safety in a marine reserve, local events for 2016 and the prospect of a WSL Big Wave event at Dungeons was discussed.
Cape big wave beauty. © Alan van Gysen
Coveted in debate last year, the Trust members unanimously voted against a Big Wave WSL event for 2015, scheduled to be held at Dungeons. Negotiations failed between the WSL and CBWT for various reasons. However the reasoning behind the unanimous positive vote for the event this year (2016/17) was that the WSL has raised the amount of local surfers into the event to more than were to be considered before. Also the fact that there is a clearer path to getting South African surfers onto the Big Wave Tour.
No Funding for this years event is the reason that it (probably) won’t be going ahead in 2016 and sponsorship remains a problem for future events.
“We are excited about the prospect of having a WSL big wave event in South Africa again. Ultimately, the CBWT wants whats best for our youngsters and community in general. We have given the WSL the go ahead from our side and now it is up to them and industry to see if they can put an event together. We will do our best to help out where we can and things are looking positive for an event in the near future,” says Mike Schlebach
In the meantime there is still an exciting winter ahead if the past northern hemisphere winter is anything to go by (and the recent swell here), there are two local events on the cards for the 2016 winter season. Striped Horse are running their annual big wave event and Rebel Media are back with their Rebel Sessions event.
The new committee wants to make a special mention to thank Barry Futter for his hugely important work as Chairman since the trusts inception a few years ago and also to Dave Smith for his contribution on the CBWT committee.
James Louw, committed to the cause. © Alan van Gysen