Matt Becker

By Nelly


Hometown: Santa Barbara     Stance: Regular     Specialty: Big Waves

Sponsors: COVA Clothing, Futures Fins, Pro-lite, Bark Surfboards, Surftech, Maui Jim, Buell Wetsuits

Favorite waves: Rincon, Sunset Beach, East Point, Ocean Beach, Mavericks

Goals: Not to get scared out of big wave surfing. Surf Jaws on a proper swell and backdoor that terrifying west bowl. Qualify for the Mavericks contest one day. Learn how to avoid doing wheelie airs … and have a good time doing it!

Your scariest wave: My scariest wave was one I shared with Pat Gudauskus this last year at Mavericks on December 20. I had ridden a bunch of waves already and had wanted to get a bigger one, and was “in the zone” as they say. I saw the one I wanted right after paddling out from another wave, turned around really deep, and paddled for it. I just barely made it over the ledge and was flying down a huge vertical wall of water, and as the drop became longer and longer I realized how big of a wave I had just caught, and pretty much started freaking out in my head. I made it to the bottom of the wave and the force of the wave exploding behind me was just enough to tip me off my board. After that I pretty much got throttled by this thing. The impact of the wave was enough to cause the C02 cartridge in my safety inflation vest to go off, and I still got annihilated. Luckily I hit an upward moving current of water and I popped up on the surface much sooner than I should have. Thankfully Jamie Mitchell was right there with a rescue ski to pick me up, and I got away from that wave with my tail in between my legs and so grateful that things didn’t go as bad as they should have. I hung out in the channel for a half hour, calmed my nerves, had a few PowerBars, and went back out to get a few more.

What do you like to do when you aren’t surfing? When I’m not surfing I love to snowboard, hang out at the beach, hike, go camping, eat good food, and work on my dad’s commercial fishing boat. I’m a huge fan of traveling and road trips.

Thoughts on the lineup: My thoughts on the lineup change wherever I go. Most of the time I dig paddling out, meeting new people, and enjoying the ocean with others. Then other times you add in egos, too many people out at one surf spot, and people being ungrateful in general, and it really turns me off to wanting to go out and catch a few waves. If I can, I prefer to surf where there’s nobody out, then all you have to worry about is yourself.

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