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Image 1 for Shaun Tomson & Rabbit Bartholomew on a Lightning Tour of the SE Australia

Image 2 for Shaun Tomson & Rabbit Bartholomew on a Lightning Tour of the SE Australia

Rabbit Bartholomew & Shaun Tomson. Pic: Dan Merkel

Shaun Tomson & Rabbit Bartholomew on a Lightning Tour of the SE Australia

12 September 22

Legendary World Surfing Champion Shaun Tomson is on a lightning tour of the East Coast of Australia where he has joined up with fellow World Champion and friend Rabbit Bartholomew.

Fundraising for Surfrider Foundation at Lennox Head and Children for Disabilities on the Sunshine Coast and then winding up on the Gold Coast for the final stop on Saturday 24thSeptember.

Tomson will be signing his latest book, Surfer & Sage on Saturday night the 24th of September at the Surfboard Warehouse Miami Store, Gold Coast including a Q&A session with Rabbit and screening special segments from the Bill Delaney’s epic surf movie Free Ride from 6pm – 10pm.

“Free ride was an iconic surf film from the 70s - it represented both and ending and a beginning in surfing's history and culture. An ending of a free-spirited lifestyle, and the beginning of a free-spirited sport, and Rabbit and I were deeply immersed in both aspects - full on, and absolutely committed,” said Tomson who was crowned World Champion in 1977. Rabbit was runner-up.

“I’m looking forward to catching up with my friend, my greatest rival and my inspiration - it has been some years,” he said.

Bartholomew and Tomson embarked on a dream of chasing the best waves in the world, competing on the world stage, and creating the platform for professional surfing.

 “Shaun and I struck up a friendship in Hawaii 1974. We knew we would be rivals throughout our entire careers but always maintained a warm friendship and a mutual respect. Before there were World Titles to win, before the World Tour, we were vying for the title "Hottest of the Year" during the North Shore winter seasons of big surf. We pushed backhand surfing at Pipeline, in fact Shaun and I made a pact to always make the drop at Pipe, in recognition of how dangerous it is on the backhand,” said 

They shared a love for tube riding, a love for surfing and a shared vision for what professional surfing could be. Back in the mid 70's winning prize money was a way to spend more months on the North Shore according to Rabbit. 

“Some of my most revered memories are our sessions at uncrowded Off The Wall, Pipeline and Sunset Beach," said Bugs.

“I have always stated that Shaun Tomson and Mark Richards are the best Ambassadors Surfing has ever had, right up there with Kelly Slater, and our collective contribution made a huge difference to the destiny of pro surfing.

Our friendship has endured and strengthened over nearly 50 years and I still feel privileged to call Shaun my mate.

Dual World Longboard Champion, shaper and musician Beau Young will be performing live music on the night that includes lucky door prizes for ticket holders. Food and beverages will be available.

Tickets are on sale via Eventbrite. For further info contact Andrew McKinnon

More on the Free Ride movie here FREERIDEFILM.COM

 - NEWS RELEASE FROM ANDREW McKINNON - Chairman, Gold Coast World Surfing Reserve Inc. 

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