Certified Great Bloke + Primary School Teacher Wins $50K Trip To Fiji - Stab Mag
If your teacher gets tubes like this, you listen. The inaugural Rip Curl Virtual Pro winner, Nick Cashin.

Certified Great Bloke + Primary School Teacher Wins $50K Trip To Fiji

‘I found out right before a staff meeting. I couldn’t tell you what we discussed honestly.’

news // Jun 16, 2023
Words by Ethan Davis
Reading Time: 4 minutes


Nick Cashin is the winner of the world’s first virtual surf competition, the Rip Curl Virtual Pro and it’s safe to say he’s on cloud nine. The 32-year-old Primary School teacher and lifelong surfer from the Central Coast will be taking his wife, dad, cousin and best mate Jack to stay on Namotu Island in Fiji for five days, leaving today. 

And yes, there’s going to be waves. 

We gave him a quick call to see how he’s feeling about winning the ultimate prize for a competition he didn’t even know he was a part of. “It’s like finding a winning scratchie or something. I’m tripping.”

Stab: How you feeling Nicholas?

Nick: We leave this Sunday. Normally, you plan trips like this for months but this has all been so spontaneous. For Rip Curl to call up and just go, “Hey, we’re taking you on The Search,” which has been a dream of mine since I was a grom is surreal. It’s my favorite holiday spot. I’ve been there seven times now, but this will be my third time to Cloudbreak. 

Staying at Namotu has always been a bit of a pipe dream. I’ve always looked at it when going out to surf Cloudbreak or Restaurants and thought it was just unattainable. Now I’m taking my wife, cousin, dad and best mate Jack. It’s going to be a great trip. All of us are super keen surfers, my wife not quite as much, but she’s heaps into scuba diving so she’s amped to get to go for a dive and see Fiji reef. 

Oh, just a break from work to go stay on a tropical island. It’s just a perfect time. 

Tell us a bit about yourself.

I’m a teacher. I’ve grown up and spent my whole life on the Central Coast. Surfing has always been my passion but a therapy too – something that helps wash all the stress away. I surf as much as I can and I’ve been doing it since I was four. All throughout primary school, I remember just sitting there staring out the window waiting for the bell to go, so I could run down to the beach and surf. 

Currently I teach year five at a primary school on the Central Coast, and I’ve been doing that for 11 years now. I teach everything from math to science to PE. Lots of variety. This is what I felt like I was meant to do. I get to feel like I’m really making a difference with my class, and get to see kids grow from the start of the year to the end. It’s a very rewarding job.

Have you told your students that you’ve won this competition? What was their reaction like? 

They were so stoked for me. It’s really funny, I told them all to watch my interview on Sunrise, next thing I’m getting all these emails from their parents about how excited the kids are. Next thing I did was go straight to Slimes – the board store, and grabbed a Chili Churro for some of the smaller days, a Pyzel Phantom for when it’s pumping. I’ve also packed a 6’9” Sojo Shape if it gets big. At pickup a bunch of the dads have hit me up asking if I’ve filled the five spots (laughs).

How’s your backside tube riding? Had any practice recently?

We’ve got lots of points all around the Central Coast, which get really good. Lots of little hidden reef spots, lots of beachies as well, but pretty much each headland has a point break. So we’ve got ample choice. My favorite waves are definitely any left-hand point break, and Cloudbreak is about as good as they come. 

Do you know what it was about your SearchGPS data that stood out?

I think it was the amount of surfs I went for mostly. We had a couple of really good back-to-back swells in that 10-day window where everywhere was firing. I got in the water as much as I could and made the most of these two swells that came through. I’m pretty sure it was about four feet the whole time. So I was just lucky I got a lot of waves, and I think it was that mix of just a big wave count and lots of time in the water.

What’s your favorite thing about teaching?

It’s probably just getting to hang out with the kids and relish those moments where they learn something new or grasp something that they’ve been struggling with. When they turn around and have those moments of like, “Oh, I can do that now,” it’s really powerful. So helping them build their confidence and believe in themselves would be my favorite aspects of the job.

What was your first reaction like?

I found out just before a staff meeting. I couldn’t tell you what was discussed to tell you the truth. I was just on cloud nine. I instantly started looking at my boards trying to figure out what to take. 

Post-note: There will be more of these. Hot tip: get yourself a Rip Curl SearchGPS and log your session data.


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