New Zealand Surfing - - Introducing -

In an era where surf­ing had turned pro and surfers had be­gun to call them­selves ath­letes, with strict train­ing at nutri­tion regimes, Lyn­den Ken­nings came along and turned the world up­side down as our orig­i­nal party an­i­mal. Lyn­den’s care­free spirit was of­ten the un­do­ing of his suc­cess, and he was cred­ited with the ti­tle of the guy who should be win­ning but wasn’t. In free surfs Lyn­den’s freak­ish abil­ity in all waves and on all crafts was mind blow­ing. He is cred­ited with be­ing this coun­try’s first aerial ex­po­nent with Lyn­den be­ing a skate­boarder he took the skate at­ti­tude into the surf, and many claimed the Lyn­den could ride a door bet­ter than most could ride a surf­board. Lyn­den was also one of the orig­i­nal wa­ter­men, a guy that wind­surfed, rode long­boards, and was one of the first to surf Stand Up pad­dle boards. While Lyn­den could ride any­thing he couldn’t ride a boo­gie board which was proven when the NZ Team had a team’s con­test in Tahiti and the team had no boo­gie boarder so Lyn­den said he’d do it and came up against Mike Ste­wart and Ben Sev­er­son which had ev­ery­one in tears as Lyn­den ran down in flip­pers. Lyn­den was also in his time a spon­sored snow­boarder. In 1990 and 91 Lyn­den put it all to­gether and won two con­sec­u­tive Na­tional Ti­tles and has won 8 Na­tional Long­board ti­tles, in 1991 he was dom­i­nant win­ning the Auck­land Champs Can­ter­bury Champs, the NZ Cir­cuit and the Na­tion­als. He rep­re­sented NZ at the ISA World Champs in Eng­land 86, Brazil 94 and USA 96. In the 1994 World Champs Lyn­den placed an ag­o­nis­ingly 2nd place in the long­board 0.01 of a point off be­com­ing the World Cham­pion. He went on to com­pete on the World Long­board Tour win­ning events in France and Eng­land and fin­ish­ing 9th in the World. Lyn­den is also proud of be­ing one of the first pi­o­neers in surf­ing big wave spots in Fiord­land and on North­land’s West Coast, as well as be­ing the only surfer to ever be banned from com­pet­ing in NZ. Lyn­den is also the only surfer on this list to be ab­ducted by aliens which prob­a­bly ex­plains his freak­ish abil­ity.

ABOVE AND IN­SET: The pi­o­neer of aeri­als here in NZ. Photo: Spence.

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