Q+A with Jordy Lawler

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Jordy Lawler is one of Australia’s brightest young stars. Growing up on the sacred sands of North Narrabeen in Sydney, Jordy has had to learn how to rise above the pack to get noticed. Jordy pays homage to the testing grounds that churned out surfers like Terry Fitzgerald, Damien Hardman and Nathan Hedge by keeping a level head, while stylishly using his rail and air game to (humbly) turn heads around the world. Jordy recently had a horror wipeout in a free surf in the middle of the Australian WQS leg. We caught up with the kid down under to find out what happened.

Tell us what happened to your leg?
So, I was freesurfing before my heat at the QS event at Boomerang Beach (NSW, Aus) when I decided to hit this weird and wonky section where I probably should have just pulled off. Next second I’ve tried to go as high as I can I remember I was in the air thinking “oh shit” and funny enough as I landed in the flats I realized my foot wasn’t flat on the board. It was twisted and I’ve come down with a ton load of force and something had to give – including my ankle and my board.

I look back thinking if I didn’t break my board, then I would have snapped my leg, 100%. I went to the doctor and I’ve torn by syndemosis ligament off the bone and also fractured my tibia, and not long after that, I was in surgery.

What does the rehab programme look like? How long until you’re back in the water?
Even though I can’t really walk, it hasn’t stopped me from doing upper body training. I’ve been getting in our pool and paddling around, doing sprints and stuff, it sounds kinda finny, but it makes me feel good after!

My ankle exercises have been pretty minor like just moving it around a little bit because I have to go back into surgery and get the screws removed. After that I should be back to normal.

What are you doing to pass the time?
I’ve been watching a lot of Netflix! Also hanging out with my mates while I have the chance.

Are you excited about the 2017 edition of the WCT? Looks like it’s shaping up to be an exciting year. Who is your money on?
Yeah it looks really good! I’m super keen to watch Connor O’Leary surf because I’ve grown up doing contests with him and love the way he surfs. Good to see Fanning back too, he’s always good to watch.

What does the dream career in surfing look like for you?
The dream career is to be on the tour by far. I’ve aspired to be on there since I was very young, and making my family proud would be a standout part of the journey.

Is there a place in the world that you haven’t been to… that you really have to get to?
A place I haven’t been, but would like to go to would be secret Sumatra or something like that – where they have perfect waves and not many people out.

What’s more important to you: Style or technique?
Style for sure. I think if you have a good style it makes your technique look better.

The surfer/shaper relationship. How important is it?
Yeah it’s definitely important, but if you can, I think it’s more important to know what works for you and what you need in a board, which comes down to feedback and talking to your shaper.

Favorite board and conditions to ride it in?
My favorite board is a Channel Island Girabbit model. It’s a really good all rounder. But when it gets big, it always feels good getting on a bigger board and sliding into some tubes.

Point or beachie?
Aaaah, tough one! I really like points because you’ve got time to think about what you’re going to do next and you can work on drawing a good line. But in saying that… I love surfing beachies.

Double cheeseburger with the lot or Vegie stack and fresh juice?
Double Cheesey for sure! I’m not the biggest fan of salads.

Big Carve or air rev?
Big carve. Feels like most people can pop an air rev these days – It’s lost its hype I think.

Thanks Jordy! The Vissla team wishes you a speedy recovery! In the meantime, enjoy the Netflix and cheeseburgers!

Words: Brad Bricknell
Photos: Jeremiah Klein