Unknown Fijian grom Isei Tokovou had been surfing less than 6 months when he was caught dropping in on a Cloudbreak bomb...
...eighteen years later he would live his dream and compete against the world's best.
Introducing THE WAVERIDER.
How did the story materialise….a conversation about doing something for Fiji Tourism was on the cards but that was turned down and we were talking about the upcoming Volcom Pro and my friend Joel, who was in the trials said whoever won the trials would get a wildcard entry into the Volcom Pro and I thought "Now THAT is a story worth following" Got in contact with the Fijian Surfing Association and asked if they were keen and hey presto. As for pre production we had almost no time, literally less than 7 days to get it together. We had no script which was a very scary part but Karl and I had some pretty solid ideas that we knew we needed to get. Some seriously fancy footwork and mouth work getting us onto the boat but so many people helped us and that is in the spirit of surfing.
Explain the level of emotion for the island of Tavarua when Isei was surfing against Kelly Slater.The emotional level was raging, Isei had won the trials and had made front page news ding that and that had helped promote it quite heavily, even more so against Kelly and the kids at Isei's son's school were crazy for it.
Explain the importance of this moment in regards to Isei's role in competitive surfing.
The importance for Isei was highlighted when we interviewed him at the village, the money he was making form the Volcom Pro, well some of that was going towards him helping young Fijian's improve their surfing, their is a basic club system in place and Isei teaches about 10 kids, more in the summer holidays. As for the competitive side of it, Isei and his "Brothers" do not really compete with each other and Isei said that was a problem as they do not have a strong competitive spirit and that needed to be addressed. Also the fact that there is no real prize at the end of any of the local competitions makes it
difficult to want to enter.
What would you like people to walk away from THE WAVERIDER with?
To walk away with…that against such incredible odds, he competed at the highest level possible and most importantly his story STILL goes on. He still drives surfers around on the Tavarua boats and in the village, he still teaches the kids and is still driven to ensure they and Fijian's will be able to compete on an international level at some point in the future. For that he needs people's support.
Anything else you would like to add?
A huge shout out to Isei and his family, JP from the FSA, Joel, Richard and the team from Volcom and our families for without their support we do not get to do these kind of things.
FRIDAY MAY 10TH – LOCALS AND LEGENDS EVENING
6:00-9:00pm: (SET 2)
THE WAVERIDER - Karl Lear
BOOTLEG - Joel Tudor and George Trimm
STOKEFEST - Andrew Quinn
*Music guest: THE RED FOX TAILS
*Food and beverages provided
Location: Bird’s Surf Shed