Brad’s talk will be focusing on the levels of fitness, training and commitment that go into riding some of the biggest waves the ocean can deliver. Specific emphasis will be placed on Cortes Bank, a wave that breaks off a shallow seamount several tens of miles from the Californian coast of which Brad was one of the pioneering surfers. Brad will also be talking on how important team work is and having a reliable team that you know and trust when taking on such waves of consequence.
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About the speaker
Brad Gerlach is a witty pro surfer from Leucadia, California. He led the World Championship Tour in 1986 and 1991, finishing second overall in 1991. He is one of the sports best tow-in big-wave riders and winner of the XXL Awards for Biggest Wave in 2005 (68feet).
Gerlach was born in 1966 in Miami, Florida and began surfing in 1976 after his family moved to the north San Diego county Suburb of Encinitas. From 1982 to 1984, Gerlach lived with his father Joe in Huntington Beach where he became the top-rated junior in that division in the National Scholastic Surfing Association and was selected to compete on the national team.
The smashed-nose regular footer pursued the muse in his own fashion, riding in the nude for a Surfer Magazine feature, travelling to exotic surf breaks and experimenting with alternative board designs. More significantly, he turned his attention to big-wave riding and eventually became a first-rate tow-in surfer. In 2001 Gerlach was among the first surfers to ride the giant open-ocean reef waves of Cortes Bank.
Gerlach has appeared in nearly 50 surf movies and videos, including Gone Surfin’ (1987), Surfers: The Movie (1990), Fluid Combustion (1995), Thicker than Water (1999), All Aboard (2002) and Step Into Liquid (2003).
In 2002, Gerlach was inducted into the Huntington Beach Walk of Fame.