The Top Fucking 5 ASP World Title Bridesmaids

2 11 2009

Cheyne OP Pro

You know the old saying—always a bridesmaid, never the bride. Surfing is not immune. The latest installment of Nugable’s Top Fucking 5® chronicles the best second-place finishers in ASP history. All five had stellar professional careers (some are still having them) but none have tasted the championship champagne or held the trophy high. A wise man once said “second place is just the first loser.”

5. Rob Machado (1995)
Ah, the Drifter. Nineteen hundred and ninety-five was Rob’s year. It was his chance to stand on the top of Everest and look down. He dominated, winning nearly half of the first seven events. He was cruising. Laughing. Having fun. Going into Hawaii he had the lead and then Slater snatched the crown from Machado. Two friends battled it out at Pipeline. It was a finish for the ages. He made a triumphant splash at the Trestles event this year. If still on the tour he would probably be a top 10 surfer.

4. Taj Burrow (2007, 1999)
Born to American parents in West Oz, Taj was Jordy Smith before Jordy was Jordy. He came on the tour with his Western Australian guns blazing. He surfed like a skateboarder. Wide stance. Ready to punt over any oncoming section. But as each year passes by his biological clock keeps ticking. He’s about three years from menopause. It may be time to start thinking about adoption.

3. Joel Parkinson (2002, 2004)
Can Parko get the proverbial money off his back? Mick Fanning is a furious little monkey. One that lifts weights and drinks protein shakes. Going into Pipeline he is the favorite despite trailing Fanning by more than 300 points. Will this finally be Parko’s year?

2. Gary “Kong” Elkerton (1993, 1990. 1987)
Gary Elkerton was an Australian man’s man. During his tenure on tour it can be argued no one charged Sunset with greater commitment and power. But his hands were that of a beauty pageant debutante. Face it. He had jazz hands. He looked like he was flipping pizza dough when he careened down the face. His hands were gayer than a cover of Men’s Health magazine. To top it off, 1993 may have been the worst top four in ASP history with Derek Ho, Kong, Dave Macauley, and Damien Hardman.

1. Cheyne Horan (1982, 1981, 1979, 1978)
I first saw Cheyne surf in person at Churches. On the military base side. I was just a grom sitting in the car park waiting for the tide to get low. Cheyne pulled up in a white BMW, parked beside me on the Camp Pendleton jarhead lot and we watched the surf together. He ate grapes. I had a Coke and a Fun Dip. I watched him do yoga. Or stretching. Not sure what to call it. He was with Michael Tomson. They may have passed a joint between them. Bob Marley’s Confrontation played on the Blaupunkt tape deck. Later we shared a few waves and exchanged a smile. Sadly, Cheyne never won that ever-elusive title. He was a gracious second-place finisher though. Perhaps the best ever.—Nug

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12 responses

2 11 2009
Jay

Jazz hands? Ha ha.

2 11 2009
Mike

Nice list, Nug.

Kong owned one of Curren’s titles…. as Tom watched from the bluff above Bell’s. Dave “snooze button” Parmenter put down his thesauras long enough to deliver Tommy a World Title. Kong never recovered from being so close or for taking that heat for granted.

My theory about happy men resonates with 3 of your other bridesmaids. Parko, Taj and Mob lead blessed lives and know it. None have the fire that Kong had, the fire that wins. Kelly, Andy and Mick burn.

Cheyne Horan is a simple read. By wasting a career forcing round pegs into square holes, Horan retired knowing that a simple equipment change was his only hurdle. As if he was handicapping himself to make the win sweeter. Geoff McCoy owes you 3 World Titles Cheyne.

2 11 2009
Ross Clarke Bones

I actually prefer second place. It shows you are good but not obsessed.

2 11 2009
Aussie Wanker

He’s about three years from menopause. It may be time to start thinking about adoption.

LMAO

3 11 2009
DemonFactory » Pro Surfing’s version of the Tin Man???

[…] proud is Brodie Carr of having The Stiff Man as his poster boy instead of Parko? Is Brodie trying to find Machado’s phone number to bring him back? I promise you that I […]

3 11 2009
Elwood

Elko was also a victim of the video age… surf videos never seemed to do his surfing justice….. yeah the Jazz hands didn’t help. If you ever witnessed him in person, as I did in both Ca. and Hawaii, he was unreal. Videos just didn’t do justice to his kinetic drive, power, and how much water he displaced. Oh, I forgot, according to Surfers top 50 of all time, Michael Ho was a better surfer than him.

Is there a story with Elko and Quick…. wasn’t he there original Golden Child before Slates and Carroll. Did he get kicked to the curb, bad breakup, or what?…. Quick had some add thanking all those who were part of building their Co. and he wasn’t in it… guess they decided to put Christian Hosoi in his place.

3 11 2009
Mike

Close Elwood, they tried to package him and Chappy J as the next “Rabbit” and protoge’, Carroll was too rigid for the rock star image. Problem with Kong was he surfed well in expansive waves…. Bells, Sunset, Margies and the bigger canvas gave him more time to flap his wrists. He got caught between era’s, would’ve been better off in the Free Ride era. Curren and Occy left a lot of roadkill, even if they didn’t realize it yet.

I surfed next to him at Lennox and he was killing it. (82) TIghter pocket cleaned his act up.

Kong’s Island was the movie that attempted to hoist him to Rabbit legend status…. Magic Wax also touched on it. Get a hold of a coffee table book, Camp of the Moon…. west Oz with Thorsen and Jennings, good stuff although the wave is fickle.

4 11 2009
Hardy

young girls likes them all!

4 11 2009
Jay

Was Kong pregnant in that video? The tour needs more Cheyne Horan’s. At least Kelly is experimenting with his boards.

4 11 2009
trauzersnake

Man, how come nobody ever remebers ME, the Trauzer, from postsurf?? What about Sgt. Cock? or Allen Weisbecker’s rinkld nutsak??? c’mon man…..where’s the love!!!

8 11 2009
Steve

Is this information entirely lifted from Surfing Magazine’s article “Nobody Remembers Second Place”? Your list is exactly the same.

At least give some credit where it’s due.

9 11 2009
The Nug

@Steve
Actually it was lifted form the article “No one remembers anything written in Surfing except some guy named Steve.” I kid surfing. I kid.

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