Wills tops Byron surf poll
By RACHEL SCOLLAY
DANNY WILLS headed up the list of Byron Bay's top 10 surfers of all time, named on Saturday night as part of a tsunami appeal fundraiser.
Meanwhile, the local surfing fraternity showed their support with an array of surfing gear, memorabilia and collectibles donated for a charity auction.
Many were there to score a piece of local surfing history, including Wills, who outbid all others on the first item under the hammer ? a classic old-style board, ridden by Byron's first home-grown surf star, Gary Timperley.
Wills also had his eye on an historic T-shirt and jacket from the 1980 Duke Kahanamoku Hawaiian Surfing Classic, donated by Timperley, who was one of just 20 invitees.
Coming in at No 9, Ant Mikellides, who regularly rides the waves of Indonesia, summed up the spirit of everyone present as he parted with not only a surfboard, but the Australian team shorts he wore at the 1990 world titles.
"We've all been over there (Indonesia) and seen how tough they do it," he said.
"And this is the worst possible thing that could happen to them."
Just one wave short of becoming the world No 1 in 1998, Wills said it was an honour to be in the top 10 with such illustrious company.
"It's a bit of an honour being included in the top 10 with guys like Gary Timperley (No 2) and Margo (Brenden Margieson, No 4)," the world tour surfer said.
Organiser Bruce Mackenzie said the panel of seven judges had their work cut out for them narrowing the field down to just 10.
"It's hard enough to judge a surfing heat, let alone surfing styles from throughout the era," he said.