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Surfers Hall of Fame was Launched in 1997 - Huntington Beach Honors Surf Greats



HUNTINGTON BEACH, Calif. – The Surfers’ Hall of Fame, the world’s first imprint collection of legendary surfers, celebrates its 10th anniversary in 2007 with the inductions of Sofia Mulanovich, Al Merrick, Bruce Irons and Martin Potter. This powerful class of trailblazers will leave their permanent mark on the surfing world Friday, July 27 at 10:00 a.m. in front of Huntington Surf & Sport (corner of PCH and Main Sts.).

Brainchild of Huntington Surf & Sport’s Aaron Pai, the Surfers’ Hall of Fame celebrated its first induction in 1997…inside of HSS. Four years later with a stunning bronze statue of sport’s spiritual leader Duke Kahanamoku (built and funded by Pai) serving as a backdrop, the ceremony moved outside to the corner of PCH and Main; just a stone’s throw from the Huntington Beach Pier.

Styled after the famed Grauman’s Chinese Theatre in Hollywood, this year’s inductees join superstars and legends from several eras including Laird Hamilton, Mike Doyle, Jack O’Neill, Robert August, Greg Noll, Jericho Poppler, Kelly Slater, Lisa Andersen and Rob Machado who are already immortalized in cement through handprints, footprints and signatures:

Sofía Mulanovich: Born June 24, 1983 in Punta Hermosa, Lima, Peru, Sofia was the first Peruvian surfer ever to win an Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) World Championship Tour (WCT) event. In 2004, she became the first South American (man or woman) to ever win the world title. Sofia’s list of credits to date is impressive, having won the Vans Triple Crown of Surfing, U.S. Open of Surfing and the Surfer Poll (2004 and 2005).

Martin Potter: Nicknamed "Pottz" and "Eggy Potter", Martin is a British born surfer who was educated in Durban, South Africa. Considered the best “free-surfer” of his generation, Pottz displayed immense talent, but lacked the consistency in the era of 25-plus event tours. He forever silenced the critics in 1989 by winning the world title. Pottz redefined competitive surfing by performing risky aerial moves and helped lead the way for a new form of competitive surfing which is now standard on the pro tour.

Bruce Irons: Bruce is a talented regular foot surfer from Hanalei, Kauai and younger brother of three-time world champion Andy Irons. Perhaps best known for his radical aerial maneuvers and fearless tube-riding abilities, Bruce turned pro shortly after graduating high school. After close calls in 1998 and 2000, Bruce defeated Kelly Slater to win the prestigious 2001 Pipeline Masters event. On December 15th, 2004, he won the "Quiksilver In Memory of Eddie Aikau" event in waves that exceeded forty feet at Oahu's Waimea Bay.

Al Merrick: Legendary surfboard shaper was a relative unknown until Shaun Tomson captured the world title in 1977 on a Merrick-shaped board. Soon thereafter Al began making boards for future legend Tom Curren. Under Merrick's tutelage, the teenage star inked deals with Op and Rip Curl and went on to win three world titles. As Curren's status reached epic proportions, so did Merrick's surfboard label, Channel Islands. This reputation grew as young surfers wanted to duplicate Curren’s feats and the next generation of top professionals, spearheaded by Kelly Slater, desired Merrick’s creations; further cementing his status as an elite shaper/ entrepreneur.

The Surfers’ Hall of Fame inductees are selected by a committee of business owners, surfers and surf industry professionals based on contribution, dedication, integrity and revolution to the sport of surfing. The Surfers Hall of Fame induction ceremony is open to the public, free-of-charge. Further information is available at  hsssurf.com