Stab Magazine | Stab High's Official Invitee List

Stab High’s Official Invitee List

Introducing your 20 Stab High competitors.

style // Sep 20, 2018
Words by Stab
Reading Time: 5 minutes

You’ve waited long enough – mostly because we couldn’t make up our minds about which incredible surfers we would be forced to exclude from our event (sorry, Slater) – so below is Stab High‘s official invitee list.

Bask in its glory, pick your winners, and tell us again how it’s not worth nine fucking dollars to watch to watch 20 of the world’s best aerialists crossing swords for six hours at surfing’s most coveted ramp.

Or don’t.

Name: Albee Layer
Age: 27
Hometown: Haiku, Maui
Stance: Regular
Strengths: Spinning at an unprecedented rate, trash-talking 
Bio: A bona fide aerial pioneer, Albee Layer is the first surfer ever to land both a double-alleyoop and a double-backside-air-reverse. At Stab High, he intends to add a few more novel tricks to that list (hint: watch for the judo alleyoop!).

Name: Creed McTaggart
Age: 24
Hometown: Margaret River, West Oz
Stance: regular
Strengths: Charming smile, sparkling rotations
About: Creed can bone a straighty like few who’ve come before him, but if we’re being honest, a rotation will likely be needed to win this event, and luckily he’s got those in his WA-bred arsenal as well. Look for him to threaten the finals and/or steal your girl at the afterparty.

Name: Blair Conklin
Age: 23
Hometown: Laguna Beach, CA
Stance: regular
Strengths: style, skimboarding skillz
About: A skim boarder by profession but surfer at heart, Blair brings a knock-kneed style and surprisingly adept air game to Stab High. While visiting Waco a few weeks back, Blair landed the “biggest air of [his] life”, a massive backside rotation on a soft board. If he can do that on a foamy, imagine what hell be able to pull with some light, responsive fiberglass underfoot.

Name: Jake Vincent
Age: 22
Hometown: Sunshine Coast, QLD
Stance: Regular
Strengths: tricky tricks, and that he’s under-the-radar
AboutSome love the thrill of dangerous curves. Others get off on releasing a tow rope, squatting low and surfing dead straight down a cascading mountain. But Jake Vincent—he prefers two foot kickers. The kind of waves that encourage creativity, spontaneity, and hella speed.

Vinny and the Waco bowl seemed like a match made in hydrodynamic heaven.

Name: Noah Beschen
Age: 17
Hometown: Sunset Beach, Oahu 
Stance: Regular
Strengths: tweaks, flips
About: Prodigal spawn of aerial pioneer Shane Beschen, Noah’s proved he’s more than just the lucky product of surf-nepotism by blitzing the pool a few months back, putting on a heavily tweaked performance that remains at the forefront of our minds heading into Stab High.

Noah adds a point of difference to his punts that will be appreciated by fans and judges alike.

Name: Kael Walsh
Age: 19
Hometown: Yallingup, West Oz
Stance: Regular
Strengths: Rotations, loft, absence of fear
About: Crashing his way onto the aerial scene is WA’s Kael Walsh, who is following in the footsteps of his team-and-countrymate Mikey Wright by launching off any and every section that presents itself—and often, somehow, landing on his feet.

While Kael’s style remains somewhat rough around the edges, you should expect this ranga to huck himself harder than most at Stab High.

Name: Mason Ho
Age: 30
Hometown: Sunset Beach, Oahu
Stance: regular
Strengths: quirkiness, eccentricity, genetics
About: As surfing’s greatest showman, Mason has entertained the masses for years with his unique approach the face, tube, and particularly air, where he’s been known to complete obscure grabs and rotations, oftentimes over exposed rock.

Waco will be the perfect stage for Mason to let his freak flag fly.

Name: Leif Engstrom
Age: 30
Hometown: Long Beach, NY
Stance: goofy
Strengths: flips, consistency
About: Splitting his childhood years between New York and Puerto Rico, Leif developed a ridiculous strike rate on aerial maneuvers, particularly frontside full-rotation reverses and rodeo flips.

While relatively underground in the surfing world, Leif threatens to take down some of the sport’s highest paid athletes with his relentlessly consistent rotations.

Name: Hector Santamaría
Age: 25
Hometown: Aguadilla, Puerto Rico
Stance: regular
Strengths: flips, spins, the power of chi within him
About: Using the power of chi to fuel his quirky rotations, Hector Santamaria is the most eccentric aerialist we’ve ever laid eyes on.

The Puerto Rican can pull flips on waves that hardly hit his shins and is more stoked on surfing and life than, well, anyone.

Name: Eli Hanneman
Age: 15
Hometown: Lahaina, Maui
Stance: Regular
Strengths: Technique, flips, lightness of being.
About: Eli Hanneman may be small, but that just makes his airs look bigger.

At just 15 years old, Stab High’s token wunderkind has already landed a backflip in the Waco pool, making him a genuine threat against his older, more creaky-limbed competitors. Eli may be a longshot to win in Waco, but he’ll entertain with his silky rotations and youthful enthusiasm.

Name: Brendon Gibbens
Age: 26
Hometown: Durban, South Africa
Stance: regular
Strengths: Gumby limbs
Bio: This rubber-limbed lad can absorb impact like a Korean gymnast, often crumbling into a pile of limbs before resurrecting himself from the whitewash, entirely intact.

As the only South African surfer in the draw, Brendon Gibbens will have the accent advantage when it comes to Stab High’s bustling afterparty.

Name: Harry Bryant
Age: 22
Hometown: Sunshine Beach, Queensland
Stance: goofy
Strengths: loft, sure-footedness, imperviousness to pressure
About: After bursting into our collective view a few years back, Harry Bryant has contributed many terrific oddities to the world of surf, but none greater than his patented bowl cut.

With a clean line of vision made possible by his pin-straight bangs, Harry will attack the ramp with vigour and aplomb.

Name: Eithan Osbourne
Age: 18
Hometown: Ventura, CA
Stance: regular
Strengths: Not afraid.
About: If he isn’t able to win on talent alone, Eithan Osborne will use his primordial power stance to shock competitors into submission.

We wonder if this underground punter might whet a few palettes with his Reynolds-inspired flair.

Name: Noa Deane
Age: 24
Hometown: Coolangatta, QLD
Stance: regular
Strengths: loft, strength, technicality
About: The son of surfing royalty, Noa Deane has built a niche for himself in the world of non-compete aerial mastery.

He’s landed a few of the biggest airs in the history of the sport, which can be attributed to his powerful thighs and general absence of fear.

Name: Chippa Wilson
Age: 30
Hometown: Cabarita, NSW
Stance: goofy
Specialties: technicality, incredible balance
About: Christopher ‘Chippa’ Wilson is the most technically gifted aerialist in the world.

The lynx-like Australian has both a deeper bag of tricks and a higher completion rate than just about anybody in the world, which is what makes Chippa the odds-on favorite to win Stab High.

Name: Ian Crane
Age: 25
Hometown: San Clemente, CA
Stance: goofy
Strengths: variation and style
About: It’s been said that Ian Crane’s knock-kneed approach is a trait of function and not fashion. According to the lore, Ian’s knees act as a catcher’s mitt for his oversized hog, ultimately blocking it from slapping the water while he surfs.

Despite that physical impediment, Ian proved his aerial worth when visiting Waco with Stab this May, nailing a wider variety of punts than any surfer in our crew.

Name: Jay Davies
Age: 31
Hometown: Yallingup, West Oz
Stance: Regular
Strengths: power, magnitude, style
About: Physically speaking, Jay Davies is one of the biggest aerialists in the world. Despite being 6’1” and carved out of West Australian timber, Jay is incredibly flexible and can finesse a spin with the best.

He can also consume more Texas BBQ than Dion, Craig, and Meola combined.

The last time we accompanied Jett to the pool.

Name: Jett Schilling 
Age: 15
Hometown: San Clemente, CA
Stance: goofy
Strengths: technique and style
About: This human Q-tip has taken up full-time residence on the Lower Trestles left, giving Jett all the practice he needs for forehand punts.

However the question remains whether Jett’s backhand will be primed for the excessive pop of the Waco ramp, which is likely to launch his scrawny frame into the mesosphere.

Name: Dion Agius
Age: 33
Hometown: Tasmania
Stance: goofy
Strengths: grabs, loft, and consistency.
About: A former air show competitor from the early 2000s, Dion Agius has built a career around his ability to take flight. The Tasmanian’s small stature and compact stance will be an advantage at Waco, where high flights and soft landings are the recipe for big scores.

After the skyscraper ‘oop he landed in Epokhe’s “Listen Now, Misty Dawn”, Dion has to be a favorite for our $20k Big Air prize.

Name: Matt Meola
Age: 29
Hometown: Haiku, Maui
Stance: Goofy
Strengths: Double spins, flips, cat-like reactions
About: Matt Meola hails from Maui and is the proud owner of a unique surfing maneuver, the Spindle Flip – a corked, 540-degree double-grab rotation.

Matt is considered one of the most nimble aerialists in the world, and is an easy favorite coming into Stab High.


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