Since its inception, T&C has played an important role in the innovation and progression of surfing. Larry Bertelmann, an early pioneer, pushed the limits of board design with creative and futuristic endeavors. This style of surfing was embraced by surfers around the world, and paved the way for surfboard design advancements crucial to today's level of surfing.
An opportunity to surf a Mark Richards twin-fin in the early seventies convinced Craig that board technology would define the future of surfing. Stoked with the performance, Craig worked with shaper Glenn Minami to build a version of the twin-fin that performed in Hawaii and around the world. The refined shaping concept served as the stage for Dane Kealoha's exceptional professional surfing career - highlighted by a #2 world ranking. Many believed the World Title only eluded Dane due to political infighting that plagued professional surfing's organisational regime at the time. Regardless of his ultimate world ranking, it is unquestionable that Dane Kealoha set the standard for power surfing! Dane was always a standout at Backdoor and big days at Ala Moana Bowls. Dane Kealoha is synonymous with Hawaiian surfing and helped to define the term - Power Surfing.
Around the same time, Glenn Pang’s version of the twin-fin helped usher in a new era of performance surfing. Martin Potter's progressive aerial surfing and fresh approach to surfing on the twin-fin helped pave the way for the new blood at Town & Country who did much of their surfing above, over or off the wave. The turns and approach to surfing the wave were fundamentally changing and so too was design. Team rider Marvin Foster returned from a trip to Australia with what was to become the new standard for performance surfing - the THRUSTER. New versions recreated by Town & Country shapers enabled young team riders Matt Archibold and Christian Fletcher to take surfing to new heights. The progressive crew was dubbed the Air Brigade. The excitement created by his new radical surfing attracted many shapers and team riders to Town & Country.
About this time a new crew of young powerful Hawaiian surfers were starting to make their mark on the international competitive surf scene. Sunny Garcia joined the Town & Country team at age 13 and under the coaching of Ben Aipa honed the fundamentals that ultimately lead him to the World Title. Johnny Boy Gomes built on the aggressive and powerful image flowing from Town & Country. Both Sunny and Johnny Boy were standout surfers in heavy Hawaiian surf continuing the legacy started by Dane.
As the reach and following of the brand grew, Town & Country continued to expand the size and reach of the team. To connect with surfers in California and Florida, Town & Country signed Chris Ward, Bobby Martinez and Shea Lopez. During this same time Kahea Hart and Ross Williams carried the torch in Hawaii. All the while Town & Country continued to groom young talent throughout the islands.
The next crew of young talent firmly grasped the torch and ushered T&C into the new millennium. This youthful pack was a who’s who of Hawaii’s emerging talent – Fred Patacchia, Jason Shibata, Jamie Obrien, Danny Fuller, Dustin Cuizon, and Conan Hayes. Internationally Kieren Perrow and Mick Lowe represented the brand on tour. The diversity of surfing styles in this group was a reflection of the influences that had come before and how far performance surfing had evolved.
The next generation of T&C riders included Roy Powers, Alessa Quizon, Makua Rothman, and Mikala Jones. Each brought uniquely different approaches to the game, but let their presence be known. Roy posted strong results and enjoyed a solid run on the WCT. Alessa refined her competitive chops and found her way on to the WCT as well. Makua came to the team an accomplished BIG wave surfer and continued to post impressive results and performances around the globe. Mikala explored various mysto spots in Indo and beyond to clock a ridiculous amount of tube time while serving as a true pioneer of capturing the unique perspective both in stills and on video.
All those that went before influence our current team. Past WCT standout and 2009 Rookie of The Year Kekoa Bacalso perpetuates Hawaiian power surfing. After winning a World Jr. title Kekoa brought his smile and enthusiastic power surfing to the world tour. WCT surfer Brisa Henessey brightens up any line-up with her positive energy and brings a well-rounded and refined surfing game to the competitors on tour. Finally Billy Kemper has helped to define what is possible in big waves. He is the 2018 Big Wave World Tour Champion and 3X Peahi Challenge Champion. In addition Billy is a stand out on days of consequence at Pipe and Sunset – winning the Sunset Open in 2018. Billy’s grit, determination, and fearlessness pay homage to those that went before him.
Our goal as always is to build a team that represents the essence of Hawaiian surfing - commitment, power, style and respect.