Well, by now you’ve all heard that Nathan killed it during the Billabong XXL Awards. The event took place at the Grove in Anaheim this past May 4th, and all eyes were on shy, unassuming Nathan.
Nathan was nominated for three categories: “Ride of the Year”, ”Men’s Performance” and “Monster Tube Champion”, and true to Nathan’s fashion, when Dave Grohl and his fellow bandmates (of Chevy Metal fame) announced the “Monster Tube Champion” as none other than Nathan Fletcher, homeboy was nowhere to be found.
Heads were turning, eyes straining, the attending spectators both hooting and whispering in hushed tones; everyone wondering where the (unofficial) Surfer of the Year was. For a second there, we at Astrodeck even thought that maybe Nathan ducked out of the whole scene and just decided to go back home to hang with his dogs Mr. Buzz and Boopers. Sometimes it seems like surfing death-defying beastly waves comes easier for Nate rather than being publically acknowledged by his friends, peers and fans.
As Chevy Metal heckled Nathan for missing out on receiving the award - funny and awkward - and Herbie got up on stage as a last-ditch effort to buy some time (”Where are you, Nathan?”), the audience erupted into cheers as Nathan finally made his way through the congratulatory crowd and all their pats on the back.
Up on deck, in front of the masses, as he hugged his proud pops, Nathan was at a loss for words, but still in his typical humble mode as he rattled off his genuine gratefulness to those who mattered.
And thus kicked-off the Billabong XXL Awards…
A big round of applause to everyone who was nominated and to everyone who won. And, of course, we’re especially proud of Nathan. Way to go, Nate!!!
SONY XPERIA “RIDE OF THE YEAR”
WINNER: NATHAN FLETCHER/$50,000 (San Juan Capistrano, CA, USA) at Teahupoo, Tahiti on August 27, 2011. Video by Simon Saffigna/$5,000)
SECOND PLACE: RYAN HIPWOOD/$5,000 (Gold Coast, Australia) at Cloudbreak, Fiji on July 12, 2011.
THIRD PLACE: GREG LONG/$1,500 (San Clemente, CA, USA) at Puerto Escondido, Mexico on May 19, 2011.
FOURTH PLACE: JEFF ROWLEY/$1,500 (Torquay, Victoria, Australia) at Jaws, Maui, Hawaii on January 30, 2012.
FIFTH PLACE: GARRETT MCNAMARA/$1,500 (Haleiwa, Hawaii, USA) at Praia do Norte, Nazaré, Portugal on November 1, 2011.
Billabong XXL 2012: The start of the night.
Makua Rothman and Mickey Nielsen
Nathan on the big screen.
Chevy Metal (or Foo Fighters. Kinda.)
Greg "Da Bull" Noll and a couple of Playboy Playmates.
The always charming Greg Long.
Not sure who the lady is. But that's Tony Hawk... as if you didn't know.
Bruce Irons, Keala Kennelly, and Christian Fletcher
And the winner is...
All these guys had a spectacular year!
Father and son: A proud moment.