I first noticed Brandon Roberts during the first Revolt Summer Series event at Crystal Pier. He was stomping through the heats and standing out…way out! After winning the first two events in his division I thought it would be a good time to get to know Mr. Roberts. I suggested we link up for a shoot. Brandon went down early in the 3rd event of the season but I knew he’d win the final event and overall division because he is a very powerful and consistent surfer. By the time we linked up for the shoot we kinda got skunked on surf – but Brandon made it look like it was firing overhead in perfect conditions with his effortless air revo’s and supermans. It’s always exciting shooting a surfer of this caliber. He’s a really nice guy from South Africa and he now lives in OB. He has some cool stories about his upbringing. Remember his name! If he sticks with it, I’m certain there is a place for him in the Surfing Hall of Fame.
Revolt In Style: When and where did you begin surfing?
Brandon Roberts: I started surfing in Cape Town i was 9yrs old. After standing on a body board for a couple months my mom surprised me with a surfboard for Christmas. Good job mom!
RIS: What was it like living in South Africa compared to here?
BR: South Africa is awesome. We’ve got great waves all over with a lot of different people and cultures. Cape Town has a similar climate to San Diego. It’s also pretty laid back… maybe just a slightly slower paced lifestyle than here
RIS: What was your favorite break in S.A. and what is your favorite break here?
BR Back home there’s a little left hand reef right by where I grew up its called Kalk Bay, it breaks just off a harbor with mountains looking over it, a quick backdoor take off barrel, its super fun! Gets interesting with bigger swell… a lot of good wipe outs and broken boards. And of course there’s J Bay which is only an 8hr road trip away.
Hard to say a favorite wave around here there is such a variety of different spots which is great, living in Ob obviously the cliffs in winter. Windansea is fun and Big Rock similar to Kalk Bay but you will mostly catch me holding it down at the pier bowl in OB
RIS: How long have you lived in San Diego and why San Diego and not some other strip of coastline?
BR. I was in San Diego for a year, went to Costa Rica for almost a year, just surfing and hanging out with my aunt and uncle.They have an awesome restaurant down there. Then I’ve been back about a year and a half… so about two and a half years total. I had been to Nor Cal and Huntington a couple times competing through my Jr. years but never all the way down here. I fell in love with SD as soon as I saw it, the weather works well for me, the style and variety of waves, and definitely the people are great too.
RIS: Not only did you win the last event but you recently won the entire Revolt Summer Surf Series in the Pro-am division. Congratulations! Did you think you would win the entire event for the season?
BR Yeah, it started off good winning the 1st event, then went on to win the second event the following month, after that I think the guys were kinda like ‘wait what’s going on here?’ and they took me out early in the 3rd. But I managed to pull it back together and get another win at the last one. That was a great way to finish. A good crowd on the beach lots of champagne and celebrations!
RIS: Was there any maneuver in particular that helped you to win that event?
BR Um, no. Just trying to piece it together nicely for the judges. A lot of guys are doing the air reverse these days, so tried to stay away from that.
RIS: Do you have a ritual you perform before surfing or competing like listening to music or a certain stretch routine?
BR I think all competitors have their routines and how they do things. I try not get too superstitious… just stay focused before heats, watch the conditions and try have fun.
RIS: What advice would you give to the groms out there who are surfing hard every day trying to get into the competitive side of surfing?
BR Get out there, surf different spots and don’t forget you started surfing for the fun of it. Equipment is very important too.
RIS: When you’re not surfing?
BR I feel like I watch a lot of movies, I have also been helping open the new Seasons52 restaurant at the UTC La Jolla so keeping pretty busy with that
RIS: Thank you for a great interview! Would you like to thank your sponsors?
BR Thanks Aaron, always a pleasure! Would definitely like to thank all the guys at Pride surf shop, Joey from Etnies, Jordan and Mike at Electric sunglasses, Ocean & Earth, Rusty surfboards and all my friends and family for the support! Feel free to contact me or check out pics and videos @ randomroberts.com!
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