THE GRIND W/ NIC H’DEZ

Pikachu punting close to home @nellysmagicmoments

Pikachu punting close to home @nellysmagicmoments

I named Nic H’Dez “Pikachu” when he was a chubby little nine year old shredding the Hook with his older brother Jason and pops Mike. I’m not exactly sure why the pre pubescent ripper reminded me of the electrifying lil’ Pokémon, but what I’m sure of now is that the kids got game, electric game in fact. He’s grown out of his baby fat and has been turning heads in Santa Cruz lately with his stylish, and explosive rail work. Not to say the kid can’t punt with the best of ’em, but Jeezum Crow does he have that pointbreak polished power game on lock! He’s done well for himself, and is now chasing the dream, travelling the world in an attempt to gain experience, exposure, and those pesky WQS points. A protégé of Nat Young, Nic has everything it takes to make it to the top–supportive parents and sponsors, a quiver of Merricks, a good attitude, and the skills to pay da bills. The youngster hit the road recently to compete in Australia, so I figured it would be a good time to check in and get the low down on his trip and plans for the future.

Pikachu photo-nealdude

Pikachu photo-nealdude

Q-You’re currently in Australia competing. What event are you surfing in and how have you fared so far?

A-I’m currently in Newcastle, New South Wales, Australia competing in the Burton Automotive Pro held at Merewether Beach. I’m 3rd alternate for the QS, and I finished 9th in the Pro Junior.

Q- There’s been a lot of Shark sightings in Australia and recently a death. Are a lot of people talking about this? Does this mess with your competitive focus?

A- Yeah it’s been crazy! They had to call the event off for 24hrs straight two days ago because the lifeguards spotted 3 meter white shark!! That’s like 15ft shark! No it doesn’t really mess with my focus at all, I mean there is always sharks in the ocean, you just kinda gotta block it out.

Q- Are you digging the Aussie lifestyle? Gotten your mitts on to any Meat Pies or Victoria Bitter’s?

A-The Aussie lifestyle is rad! Totally different vibe than the northern California one I grew up in, but I am definitely digging’ it! The Meat Pies and the VBs are epic!

Q- What have the waves been like? How long are you going for and Are you going to travel to other places in Australia for this trip? Anywhere you’d like to surf in particular?

A-The waves have been 2-3ft wedgey/punchy/mushy two turn beach breaks, but super fun! Blue water and hot sand just the sickest summer vibes. I wanna go surf Kirra!

Q-Are you making a big push on the QS this year? What are your plans for the rest of the year?

A-Yeah I want to, it’s just hard when you first start out to just get into events, you gotta go to places like China and grind out 2 stars and shit, and when you finally do get the opportunity to compete in say, like a 4 star, you gotta make a few heats to make it count. So it’s definitely a process and it’s gonna take some work, but I’m willing to put that work in.

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