Watch: Is Laurie Towner The New King Of Cloudbreak?
Paddle-wise, no one could touch the guy.
After losing his Billabong sponsorship in 2014, Laurie Towner hadn't been on a sponsor-backed surf trip in nearly five years.
Then last Northern Hemi winter, core wetsuit brand Need Essentials helped Laurie get to Jaws for the first time, where he surfed what was expected to be excellent but proved to be an altogether underwhelming swell at the Maui magnet. Still, any excuse to see Laurie in big waves again was a win for surf fans.
Then came May 2018, when the biggest, best swell in nearly a decade hit the Fijian isles, turning the reef-point Cloudbreak into an oversized meat grinder.
All self-proclaimed "big-wavers" were in attendance, and thanks again to Need, so was Laurie.
But the Angourie local didn't just arrive at Cloudy – he showed up. Frankly, according to the video above, we'd find it hard to believe that anyone paddled the joint better than Laurie on this particular swell.
After nabbing nearly 20 15-foot tubes across two days of swell, Laurie paddled to the boat with a subdued sense of pride and in his own words, a new favorite wave.
The clip above details the entire experience and is well worth a watch.