The WSL World Champion Tour always starts off with a bang with the Australian leg kicking off the year at Snapper rocks in March. For Australian surfers it’s always like a home court game, despite the events being spread around Queensland, Victoria and WA. It also means a busy time for athletes, both from a preparation point of view, but also utilising the off-season for dialling in boards, fulfilling sponsor commitments… and in Julian Wilson’s case… giving back to the sport and the causes he is so passionate about.
One of those causes we’ve seen Julian support over the years is breast cancer, and it comes in the form of an annual collaboration between Julian, his mum Nola and Hurley… the other is supporting young surfers and this year will see the inaugural Julian Wilson Serious Fun Week-end being held in Julian’ hometown of Coolum.
Julian, who finished third on the WCT in 2017 has just launched the 2018 boardshort with Hurley, raising awareness for the illness he knows more about than most; his mother has fought and beaten breast cancer twice.
Working with Hurley, he has created the Hurley Phantom Julian Wilson Snapper boardshort to do his bit to raise awareness of a disease that affects thousands of Australians each year.
What makes the project even more special is that Julians mum Nola is not only the inspiration for the boardshort but the design has been created by her. The boardshort itself is built for coastal performance incorporating stretch fabric, while its shorter length and scalloped hem offers a full range of motion for every activity.
Julian will be wearing the boardshort to kick off his campaign to win the maiden world crown at Snapper Rocks on March 11. It will retail for $99.99 AUD
JW answered a few questions around the short and the purpose behind it all.
What was the process of designing this years short?
As always, I like to give Mum complete freedom to show off her creative talent. Mum presented me with 10 different designs that show mocked up on some A4 gloss cardboard and then I picked my favourite 3 that then go onto being put onto a board short cad. This particular design stood out to me because I think it looks like the after effects of a breaking wave from the view of being under water.
What’s your biggest priority in creating this short every year?
Supporting my Mum and sending a message to a youthful audience about the positive outcomes you can get from early detection of breast cancer.
What’s special to you about the design evolution from this year’s short?
I like this short the most out of any we’ve designed together before. The overall cut and style along with Mum’s print makes it a special short.
Hurley’s ethos are deeply rooted in beach culture, with a clear focus on helping facilitate the dreams of the youth, so it comes as no surprise that they have teamed up with Wilson to bring the SERIOUS FUN WEEKEND to his hometown of Coolum.
Julian is a hometown legend, from being a consistent world title threat on the WSL tour to his breast cancer awareness programs & caring for the local community. Together with Hurley they have created an event like no other placing emphasis on inclusion and positivity.
SERIOUS FUN WEEKEND symbolises Julian’s childhood and pathway to being a professional athlete; growing up with FUN as the most important requirement whatever he was doing. In addition to surfing; skateboarding and motorbike riding represents his love of many sports.
I wanted to create something that is all about fun and participation and inclusion for the youngsters”.
“Bring them down to the beach and encourage them to ride anything they want… shortboard, longboard, soft board, skateboard, anything!” Julian explains.
Day 1 (Saturday 10th February) will be full of activities for the participants aged 6 – 14 year old to get involved in. There will be a number of stations set up in Tickle Park including an Oakley chill out area, Board art, Hurley Printing Press, Sun Bum Tent, Skate and Surf Sessions and Mini Putt-Putt Golf. In addition to those activities the crew from JS Surfboards, Thomas Longboards, Catch Surfboards and FCS will have all the latest Julian Wilson products to demo.
I also wanted to include the Pro Junior level and wanted to re-create a WCT event type vibe both in and out of the water”.
“I’ve invited 12 kids from Australia that I believe have tremendous talent and potential that will also embrace the event and have fun while going at it for some cool prizes!” continues Wilson.
Day 2 (Sunday 11th February) will showcase 12 of Australia’s very best U/18 surfers, personally invited by Julian. They will compete in a WCT like event and battle it out for some awesome prizes, including a trip to Indonesia with Wilson and a filmer where they will have a section produced in Julian’s next web edit and an entry into the Oakley Battle Clip Competition.
The free event registrations filled up almost instantly, which is a sign of the surfing champion’s pulling power.
JULIAN WILSON SERIOUS FUN EVENT TICKLE PARK, COOLUM BEACH FEBRUARY 10TH – 11TH 2018