If you follow the Zag, you’ll know we’re big fans of Joel Tudor’s reimagining of what surf contests are all about through the Vans Duct Tape Invitational series. Hot on the heels of those New York City high jinks, the last Duct Tape event of 2019 is going down right now in Kanagawa Japan, right under Mount Fuji and South Africa’s own son of the soil and current reigning Longboard World Champ, Steven ‘Steezy’ Sawyer is there for his inaugural Duct Tape experience.
Steezy’s going to be keeping a diary for us, live and direct from Duct Tape Kanagawa, providing a unique insight into the surfing, the culture and the parties… hold onto your beer.
In the meantime, here’s Joel explaining how and why Mr Sawyer cracked the nod for his first Duct Tape Invitation:
“Well, Stevie Sawyer just won the Relik comp. It’s a pretty interesting story because he came through the WSL and it was the first time I ever saw him ride a real board and I had a chat with him. As you were saying, you guys don’t really have a network, historically, to pull things from. Here we can go and pull old boards up, you can go to a museum and they’ll loan you a board to copy. You guys have none of that. You have to guess everything. And that put it in perspective for me, it wasn’t his fault, it’s just the environment he was in. And I had heard from everybody that the dude was funny as hell.”
“The second I got around to him, I was like wow, this kid’s classic. I had no idea. Then he came to California and kind of understudied for a couple of weeks, broke his board, we gave him a blank – I had an extra one sitting around, coincidentally with the exact same rocker Donald Takayama used to put in my Model T’s, which is kinda like, the rocker, if you’re looking for a nose rider that’s the one. So he took it to Michael Takayama, who’s having a ton of success with all these kids and he built him the formula, and look what happened. It’ a testament to him, but it also says to everyone else, wake the fuck up dudes! Look what just happened right here. Take a look at that shit. He looks like a hero. You might as well try to follow his lead. That was a big move on his part and he’s coming to Japan next month. He’ll be in the next Duct Tape.”
Well, that Duct Tape is happening now. Stay tuned.