Mikey February was meant to ride a surfboard. Photo by Bosko
Who Just Locked Down The Tour’s Most Stylish To A Head To Toe Deal?
The inimitable Michael February sheds the Quik sticker.
There’s one person on tour who rivals Stephanie Gilmore, aesthetically, moving across a rolling wave’s face.
That man is Michael February.
The 25-year-old from South Africa is a unique talent, one who was apt enough to fight his way through the QS and onto the World Stage. He started the year strong, even making a quarter at Chopes but it was obvious early that Mikey is cut from a different cloth to other world tour surfers.
In fact, during his few visits to the Stab office, we’ve been egging him on to ride twin fins and other oddities in competition—a finless at the Surf Ranch, single fin at Chopes, etc—claiming it’d make him the most talked about surfer on tour regardless of results.
At 31st in the rankings, it’s unlikely we’ll see Mikey on tour next year and that’s something no one seems to mind. Especially when it comes to sponsors. He’s been the center of a pretty fierce bidding war and it’s his free-spirited approach to wave riding that has made him one of the few signing big deals recently.
During the US Open, Quiksilver premiered their "Generations" Film, it was a 40-minute surf edit shown at the Lido Theatre following our film, "A Tale of Four Surfboards with Kanoa Igarashi".
In the 40 minutes filled with plenty of before seen footage (as hardly anything is sacred) Mikey’s section blanketed the theatre in silence, then hoots and hollers. His surfing was electric, it was inherently beautiful, he highlined, carved and tubed down a hefty left in Indo on a glossy red twin fin.
The section is drop dead. It's the kind of surfing we'd love to see Mikey doing more of.
Mr. February should be on surf trips, in photoshoots, looking handsome, driving old-school automobiles, surfing boards that become an extension of his limbs.
As his World Tour career is likely coming to a halt, the cultural capital of the first black African surfer to make the CT remains at an all-time high.
Today, Michael’s left Quik and has signed a head to toe contract with Vans. And with this complete deal above the waffle soles, he will shine; he will be encouraged to surf towards his individualism. In the bleached world of surf, Mr. February is a refreshing cultural divergent.
As Bobby Hundreds told Stab after his pot-stirring SIMA speech addressing the lack of diversity in surfing, “I’ve literally had every single brand reach out. And this is what I’m telling them all: Why aren’t you just funding smaller brands, with people of color, or for people who are empathetic or interested to the culture of people of color.”
Both Vans and Quik were on board and part of this Mikey Feb movement well before Bob Hundreds rolled into town but the timing sure didn’t hurt negotiations with Mikey penciling his new six-figure, five-year deal.