2010 Surf Champion Julian remembers Arugam Bay


Arugam.info Julian Wilson screen shot 2010-07-13 at 12.42.02 pm

The Sri Lankan Airlines QS event at Arugam Bay marked the return to competition for Julian Wilson, the first time he’d paddled out in a heat since severely injuring his ankle and concentrating on his much hyped film, Scratching The Surface. With the video all but in surf shops and his foot back to full strength he brought home the trophy, beating 19 year-old Amrican Nat Young in long clean right handers. He spoke to SW from California, preparing for the U.S open at Huntington.

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Julian contemplates his cover shot on the latest Surfing World. All photos courtesy of Red Bull

SW: First of all, congrats on the win. We’re all stoked for you. How’d it feel to get back into a competition rashie?
JW: It felt really good to be competing and it felt even better to bring a rashie home with me because that meant I won.

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What were your expectations going into the contest?
Any event I go to I have high expectations on myself. I went to Sri Lanka really wanting a win and put that pressure on myself from day one, it felt good to follow it through.

Arugam.info Julian Wilson screen shot 2010-07-13 at 12.41.44 pm

The waves looked fun, the culture interesting. What’s Sri Lanka like as a contest destination?
As a contest destination I was really impressed with the wave. When you go somewhere for a contest its a lot different to going to film or shoot photos there. As long as the competition spot has decent waves and you are comfortable and happy then its all good, that was the case.

Your semi against Drew Courtney was a tight one, gaining the lead with less than three minutes to go. Talk us through the patience required to win that heat.
Yeah that was a tight one for sure. I was kind of annoyed at myself for getting into that position with a couple of minutes to go and knew that if I could just get a decent wave Ia??d be able to get the score.

It seemed, and the the last day in particular, the contest was all about laying rail and nothing to do with tricks – was that a tactical thing or just an adaption to the conditions?
A combination of both. Going into the event I just wanted to start out solid and let each round, and my opponent, dictate whether or not I needed to try going mad. The wave is harder to surf than it looks at first glance and there are a lot of flat sections, not ideal for throwing the fins.

The ankle injury forced you into a serious rehabilitation and training program, and it looked as if fitness was a factor in heats at Arugam Bay, with no jet skis and sprints back along the beach and into the line-up, is the training something you’ll keep as important to your routine?
Yeah definitely. I was never afraid to do a little training and knew that one day I would need to take it a little more seriously. This last ankle injury made me realise how important it is to keep strong and in shape and coming to Sri lanka I definitely felt like I was fit and strong.


Do you think of the ankle when you see a section worth throwing a big air-reverse over? Or is it back to surfing as normal?
Very occasionally, if its a huge ramp then sometimes it will pop into my head but nearly never at this stage.

How’s the win effect your mentality going into the U.S open?
It gets me fired up for the whole rest of the year. I am actually banking on a wildcard to get into the main round of the US Open and that isn’t quite confirmed yet. I need a few points in the US Open to guarantee my seed into the Primes for the remainder of the year. I just want to surf and compete.

Now that the movie is pretty much wrapped up, does competition come to the front of the agenda?
Yeah I am fired up to do as many contests as possible for the rest of the year. That doesna??t mean I will stop filming or shooting photos but contests are going to take priority for the next little bit. – Mike Jennings

Julian and his family are the lead story in the latest Surfing World, Citizen – profiling over twenty intriguing surfers that make up our community.

Did you know that you can win a surf session with Jules as well? All you gots to do is fill in the survey that comes with the issue. Other prizes include an STC boat trip, a Chaos surfboard, a Smoothstar Skateboard and crapload more.

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