Bailey now one of the 'Byron boys'
BYRON Bay surfer Soli Bailey couldn’t quite crack the top four at Occy’s Grom Comp on the Gold Coast this week.
But the 15-year-old is part of a different top-four – “Byron boys”.
Bailey is two weeks returned from a surfing trip of a lifetime.
Along with Byron legends Danny Wills and Kieren Perrow, and rising star Garrett Parkes, Bailey spent a month at the picturesque Macaroni’s Surf Resort in the Mentawai Islands off the coast of West Sumatra, Indonesia.
The Byron Bay quartet was in surfer’s heaven.
And there must have been some serious surfing go down – enough, anyway, to attract the attention of Quiksilver and surf magazine Tracks which will run a picture story on the Byron boys in the coming months.
But as fun as that trip was for the youngster, now is business time.
Occy’s Grom Comp might have been a tune-up for this weekend’s Rusty Gromfest in Lennox Head, but Bailey was a tad disappointed with his semi-final knockout.
“I hate getting beaten just before a final, its just so frustrating,” he said.
But there is no time to get down.
Bailey, a winner of the Lennox event in 2007, has some high expectation to live up to.
There is only a matter of weeks until his all-star surf trip is made available to the world through Tracks magazine, and it would be an ideal time for him to win some silverware and capitalise on the wave of excitement that is likely to build around the Tracks feature.
Rusty Gromfest organiser Max Perrot has seeded Bailey No 5 in the 16s division.
“Soli is the best hope for the locals in his division,” Perrot said.
“The top four are all from out of town so there should be plenty of support for him.”
Seeded five, Bailey is again absent from a top-four. But he won’t mind; the Byron boys surf trip is the foursome that he will always remember.