PHIL ED­WARDS BY NAT YOUNG

Tracks - - Standing On The Shoulders Of Giants -

Phil Ed­wards was my big­gest in­flu­ence. What im­pressed me about his ap­proach? One word: style. I tried to copy Phil – ev­ery move, the way he held his hands, the way he head-dipped, the po­si­tion of his head. I be­lieve it is the right of kids to copy their heroes un­til they feel they are good enough to run on their own tracks. The first time I saw him surf was at Pupukea in the win­ter of 1963, he was surf­ing a 10 balsa board that worked like a bowie knife. Its name was "Baby". His surf­ing in Bruce Brown’s movie Surf­ing Hol­low Days at Maili Beach on the west side is still some of the most stylish long­board­ing I have ever seen. I met Phil in the win­ter of 63/64 – it was the best thing that ever hap­pened to me on my first trip to Hawaii. He was so cool, wanted me to have his board "Baby", said he had never seen any­one surf it as well as me. We were both tall guys, the board was fan­tas­tic, suited me down to the ground but I couldn’t take it back to Oz. I surfed it for weeks but even­tu­ally gave it back to Phil.

PHOTO: WITZIG IN­SETS: PHIL ED­WARDS, THE MAN WHO IN­SPIRED NAT THROUGH­OUT HIS CA­REER.

MAIN: STYLES NAT INTO YOUNG MAKAHA POINT.

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