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Two Fins, More Wins

Mark Richards. Photo: Art Brewer
Ben Aipa rides a Sting. Photo: Warren Bolster
Mark Richards. Photo: Hugh McLeod
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Dane Kealoha. Photo: Rob Hutchinson

Before the IPS world tour, the top shortboard-era surfers—Nat Young, Midget Farrelly, Gerry Lopez, Reno Abellira, and Terry Fitzgerald among them—earned a living by shaping surfboards. Once the tour was established, aspiring pros had more incentive to focus entirely on wave-riding, and boardmaking fell by the wayside. Wayne Bartholomew, Shaun Tomson, Cheyne Horan, Dane Kealoha, and nearly all the other IPS pros had no interest in shaping.

Mark Richards bucked this trend partly because, unlike...

Suddenly there was less concern about the “right” way to surf. Gerry Lopez could zen his way through the barrel at Pipeline, while Marks Richards, at Off-the-Wall, could rip “rip, tear, and lacerate” on his new twin-fin.