Stab Magazine | Savour every second of Dane in a contest jersey
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Savour every second of Dane in a contest jersey

Dane Reynolds is calm and jovial when he arrives to pick me up from the contest site in his rental car. It’s an exterior that belies a turbulent undertow. It’s nighttime and I’m close to the last person left in the media centre. I hear the security guard stop Dane at the gate and wait for […]

news // Feb 22, 2016
Words by stab
Reading Time: 3 minutes

Dane Reynolds is calm and jovial when he arrives to pick me up from the contest site in his rental car. It’s an exterior that belies a turbulent undertow.

It’s nighttime and I’m close to the last person left in the media centre. I hear the security guard stop Dane at the gate and wait for that awkward exchange where the guard doesn’t recognise the pro surfer and the pro surfer becomes impatient then belligerent, or self-conscious.

“Hey, how you doing?” says Dane to the security guard in his trademark chirp.

“Yeah, here you go,” he says, showing the guard his competitor’s bracelet and thanking him before entering.

Though he’s agreed to pick me up and submit to an interview, Dane was eliminated two days ago from the Rip Curl Pro in round two by South African, Travis Logie. It was one of the upsets of the event and ended his shot at a world title.

“I’m gonna go home and (best friend and former pro surfer, Adam Virs) is gonna be like, ‘Travis Logie? C’mon.’ But even if I lost to Jordy (Smith), he’d be like, ‘Jordy, are you kidding me?’” he will say later.

Dane will also reveal he was confused by the judges’ read on his highest scoring ride.

“I was like, ‘Whoops, maybe I can get barrelled here. Oh no, well, I’m gonna do this stupid turn and they gave me like a 7 something for it,” he says (see the wave below).

Dane is due to fly out for California at 3 am the following morning for ten days at home before the Rip Curl Search event in Puerto Rico (where he will lose to Taj Burrow in the quarter-finals). Yet he will give me three hours of his time before apologising for not being able to give me a lift home at the end of our chat– a journey which would take him half an hour out of his way.

For the ride to our, as of yet, unknown interview destination, Dane promises to bring a six-pack. Our first topic in the car is how to get the top off a beer without an opener.

“You use the seat belt,” he says.

I lever, scratch and jam at it for a few moments before giving up.

“No, you’re doing it backwards,” he says and seizes the bottle, popping the cap off while driving.

Lukewarm and served by the supple hand of the hottest surfer in the world. Mmmm.

Dane can’t believe I didn’t know how to do that.

 

“What? You guys (as in Australians) don’t do that?”

Maybe it’s due to our heavy drink driving laws and the fact people don’t tend to be cracking sixers while wearing seat belts, I offer.

“Oh no, we don’t do that either back home. Fuck, the penalties are sooooo harsh. If you get caught it’s either 30 months in jail or a 12 thousand dollar fine. And, well, most people don’t have 12 thousand dollars,” he says.

Then, in the first indication of the outpouring of opinion and insight I’m about to receive, Dane asks, “So where do you wanna do this? Heaps of people are at my place and they’re all having dinner so I won’t be able to talk freely. Do you wanna go to the Mariot (hotel, near Peniche) for a couple of beers?“

I agree and over the next two hours we drink six beers (three each, all paid for by Dane), eat a plate of pita bread-triangles, hummus and olives (my choice) and chicken shish kebabs (his choice). And he tells me why the Pipe Masters will be almost certainly be his last world tour event, why he feels “surfing is in a weird place” and will bare more of his soul than anyone in his position has ever done before.

More to come soon. – Jed Smith

Below is a video of the heat against Travis Logie that Dane’s speaking about. The wave he was given a 7.33 for is around 45 seconds in and Looks pretty darn good to us.

[showvideo]

 

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