Kelly Slater engraved his name into the surfing history books last year by winning an unprecedented tenth world title - before that it was only written in permanent marker.
The Floridian has dominated the sport for the last two decades, and has notched up an impressive CV in and out of the water. He has won more World Tour events than anyone, won speciality events and big wave contests, published two autobiographical books, played in professional golf tournaments (he is a scratch handicap), made an entire library of surfing videos, released an album with his band, traversed the globe, stared on the biggest television show of the 90's and dated Pamela Anderson.
But now, veering towards his forties, Slater is turning his focus inland - not necessarily away from surfing though. The Kelly Slater Wave Company is his newest project. Drawing from his years of experience, his goal is to create wave pools that will provide world class waves - something that plenty have promised land lubbers, but not delivered.
Now in its fifth year of development, the site is almost ready to be launched and rumors about plans for the first pools are slowly starting circulate. "Until now, there hasn't been a man-made wave technology that even comes close to reproducing a natural feeling and world-class waves," Slater said in a press release. "From the start, we've been committed to creating an authentic surfing experience."
In the past, surfers stuck inland or in countries where the coastline is less kind to water babies (like our own), surfers have had to be resourceful when it comes to finding ways around mother nature. In Munich, the Eisbach River provides an impressive standing wave that makes for some impressive rides (although I can't imagine learning amongst the crowds would be too easy).
Here in Glosteshire, England, the Severn Bore brings in one of the longest and most crowded waves you'll get this side of the UK.
Whether or not Slater's new wave pools bring perfect waves to land lubbers is yet to be seen. If his previous endeavours are anything to go by though, this is not a man who fails when he puts his mind to something.more blog posts