Stab Magazine | Watch: Albee Layer Lands Surfing’s First Backside 540!

Watch: Albee Layer Lands Surfing’s First Backside 540!

Haters will say it’s Photoshopped.

Words by stab

“I finally did it!” says Hawaiian Albee Layer, who’s just stomped the first-ever backside 540 done in surfing.

Albee’s been trying to settle the buck-fifty rotation on his backhand for some time now. “The hardest thing about it is, when you’re landing, you just have so much momentum,” Albee told me pre-completion. “I couldn’t figure out how to slow it down enough.”

But finally, after spinning into every trade wind Maui had to offer since he decided he wanted to do it, Albee has figured it out, and ridden out of surfing’s first-ever backside 540.

Stab has always adored the chase of a new air, and anyone who dedicates time to such an endeavour. Albee is a man who knows this game well, having also been the world’s first surfer to stomp a double oop. The backside five was a different beast though, given the best air waves on Maui are mostly rights (Albee’s a regular-footer).

Albee started trying to spin past 360 after turning a certain point; he grew a lot bigger, and felt less likely to hurt himself landing on his board. “Now, more often than not, the board will break before I do,” he says. “That gave me more confidence to try different stuff like those fives.”

And how about the selfless act of not keeping his attempts secret! “Yeah, with the whole double oop thing, people were hyping up Julian to do it on that Reunion trip, and that fired me up to do it,” he says. And Albee hoped that the same thing might happen with the backside double 540, that more people would start trying it, which would in turn push him harder to land it first.

And, it worked.

Watch the spin above. And, ponder what wild rotation Albee, or pilot pal Matt Meola, might bring us next.

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