Breaking Surfing After Andy Irons (Hardcover)
|Author: Brad Melekian|
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From the Publisher:
The tragic death of a superstar athlete reveals a sport in the midst of world-class growing pains||In November 2010, Andy Irons died mysteriously in a Dallas hotel room four days before his lifelong rival Kelly Slater won his unprecedented tenth world surfing title. Slater wore a white wet suit and served as role model for a generation of surfers. Irons was brash and cocky, wore black, and was the hard-charging, hard-partying rock star who called himself ?the people's champ.? ||These two represented the modern face of surfing. Slater's efforts to legitimize surfing as a sport with mainstream appeal were culminated when he won his tenth world title, a feat that put him in the pantheon of sporting greats alongside Michael Jordan and Lance Armstrong. Still, a pall was cast over the entire affair: the ?story? was Irons's death, not Slater's win. And the controversies surrounding Irons's death continue both in and out of the news. ||Breaking reveals to us what surfing was, is, and wants to become. How did an oddball, esoteric pursuit pioneered by a cluster of outcasts become a fully formed sport, replete with a million-dollar contest circuit? Why has it gained a religious following of people who find it to be a salve for all of life's problems? What is the science of risk behavior? How did Slater and Irons, both millionaires from working-class backgrounds, represent the apotheosis of surf culture? And how do their stories affect ordinary surfers who ride waves in small beach towns and travel to far-off oceans in search of answers that are never quite there?