Shaun Tomson's Tunnel Vision

Shaun Tomson was the pro surfer of IPS founder Fred Hemmings’ dreams. To use a marketing phrase that was just beginning to catch on, Tomson was “the complete package”: bright and earnest, polite and dependable, a deadly competitor who was never anything less than a perfect sportsman. All that, plus he had an aristocratic blow-dried handsomeness that earned him modeling assignments from Calvin Klein and GQ. Everything about Tomson was above-average, and over the course of a long career he some...

How good was Shaun Tomson? At 19 he won the Hang Ten American Pro in perfect triple-overhead Sunset Beach, after a finals performance in which he out-pointed Jeff Hakman, Gerry Lopez, Reno Abellira, and Larry Bertlemann—Hawaii’s entire starting lineup.