Years After Calling Quits to Surfing With a Heated Comment, America’s Long-Lost-Favourite Returns to ‘Cloudbreak’

Published 07/02/2023, 1:15 PM EDT

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It was in September 2011 when the world of surfing bid goodbye to one of the best surfers in the world, as he retired. The circumstances under which the farewell took place weren’t ideal either. Yet, the love of surfing never faded away for Bobby Martinez. The Santa Barbara-based-surfer has since spent all the time with his family, tending to their needs, and occasionally surfing. The 41-year-old had the same routine for the past 12 years since he quit, but now he returns for his favorite wave.

Bobby Martinez was born and brought up in the coastal town of Santa Barbara, California. Being around waves from a very early age, it was only a natural progression for Martinez to take up surfing and be around waves. Although it ended abruptly for one of the best surfers in his prime, Martinez is back to surfing with ‘Cloudbreak’.

After an ugly end 12 years ago, pro surfer returns to his favorite wave


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As per a Surfline article, Bobby Martinez has recently returned to his favorite wave, the Cloudbreak after nearly 12 years. But the last time the pro surfer was charting waves, it wasn’t a pretty affair. “F**k the ASP”, said Martinez in September 2011 to the camera, announcing his exit. He was calling out the Association of Surfing Professionals after being unhappy with the then-new ranking system put in place by them. It was modeled after professional tennis, and Martinez was not one to easily accept the new changes.

He even skipped the J-Bay and Tahiti contests for low waves, and he was fined by the committee under the new rules. He revolted, before eventually criticizing them with the profane word. Martinez was at first suspended by the ASP, and later he himself called it quits. For years, he took care of his family in Santa Barbara, before deciding to move to Queensland for a brief while to visit his wife’s family.

READ MORE – “I Felt My Legs Had Snapped Into 20 Pieces”: Surfing Champ Billy Kemper Felt ‘Paralyzed’ After an Easy Entry Morphed Into Horrific Exit In 2020

Unable to stay away from the allure of waves, Martinez made a few calls and traveled to the nearby country of Fiji. There lay the monstrous wave Cloudbreak on the waters of a 29-acre island Tavarua. It was as if Martinez was reborn again.


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He had the company of his friends

When after all these years Bobby Martinez finally went down to surf the Cloudbreak, he wasn’t alone. Martinez had company. Pro surfers Billy Kemper and Dingo Morrison were already staying with their families, and all of them together decided last minute to pay a visit to the tiny island within the larger island of Fiji. It was a big deal for Kemper to chart the Cloudbreak again, since he too had a terrifying experience a year ago, where an almost-fatal wipeout experience gave him a reality check.


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Martinez, won the Billabong Pro four times in his career, twice each in Teahupoo, Tahiti, (2006, 2009) and in Mundaka, Basque Country (2006, 2007). As he gets the taste of charting a large wave again, it is still uncertain if Martinez will return to professional surfing full-time as of yet. But one thing is for sure, his love for the sport will always remain the same.

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Written by:

Tanmay Roy


One take at a time

Tanmay Roy is a sports writer at EssentiallySports specializing in his coverage of the Olympics and other major American sporting events. His passion for sports was ignited by the early achievements of Michael Phelps, Pete Sampras, and John McEnroe. As a writer for EssentiallySports, Tanmay's articles have been recognized as Editor's Picks, showcasing his ability to craft engaging and thought-provoking stories.
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