How to become a sponsored surfer?

We receive almost daily requests from surfers all over the world (mostly from groms) who are looking to become sponsored team riders. Well at that age who wouldn’t want to be a sponsored surfer getting free stuff, free surf trips, team stickers on boards, looks of envy from mates- it’s every aspiring young surfers dream. The problem is that not all requests we receive are presented in a professional way so we thought we’d try and offer some guidelines on how to make the right approach to any surf company and try to become a sponsored surfer.

How do you get the team rider sticker on your board?

How do you get the team rider sticker on your board?

So if you are one of those young surfers who feels that you’ve a burning surf talent that deserves sponsorship then heres our guide on what to do and what not to do on your search to becoming a sponsored surfer.

What NOT to do!

some golden rules on how to have your sponsorship request ignored or trashed:

  1. Write as few words as possible in your introduction, with no supporting images etc i.e “Hey Sponsor me”
  2. Make a rude follow up “Hey why haven’t you sponsored me yet!”
  3. Send IM on Facebook – nothing says I’m serious about being a pro-surfer more than an IM
  4. Send one low res picture of you surfing in knee high onshore slop
  5. Attach bribes “I’ll send you my older sisters phone number, she’s 22 and really fit!”
  6. Don’t spell check your email ” I relly wont u 2 sponser me coz I’m gud at surfin”
  7. Don’t mention the brand in your request i.e sending a generic email “I’d like to be sponsored by your company”
  8. Don’t be a kook!
Don't be a Kook

Don’t be a Kook

What TO do

OK so the list above is a bit of fun and the list below won’t guarantee you surf sponsorship but it will help towards being taken seriously and possibly have your request assessed by the right people. So unless you’re talent spotted at a young age we’d recommend these few simple basics to improve your chances of becoming a pro- surfer:

  1. Learn to surf! and become the ripper at your local beach, train and train hard
  2. Make a good CV/Resume. It only needs to be one page about you as a surfer, comp results, where you’ve surfed, links to any film of you surfing, include one or two really good surf shots of yourself. Include your contact details or those of your parents if you’re under 18. Spell check it!
  3. Tell the brand why you like them and why you would like to be on their team.
  4. Become a social media leader. Set up a Facebook page, Instagram and twitter accounts for you as a surfer. Post only on things relevant to your surfing and try to build up as big a following as possible. Surfers popular on social media become very interesting to brands.
  5. Get some high resolution shots of your surfing, chose only the very best and send those with your CV.
  6. Have a good profile picture of yourself, brands want to see what you look like.
  7. Learn some basic film editing skills and try and make some short films to drop onto Youtube promoting you as an aspiring pro-surfer.
  8. Work out what it is that you can offer a surf brand and make sure that message comes across in your approach.
Get sponsored and find yourself on an all expenses boat trip in Indo!

Get sponsored and find yourself on an all expenses paid boat trip in Indo!

Surf brands don’t give out free kit or put surfers onto their payroll without serious consideration, after all it’s a business so you need to prepare yourself in a way that demonstrates you can offer a credible benefit by joining their team.

To become a sponsored pro-surfer, getting paid by a surfing company is incredibly difficult, riders on the payroll are an elite group so don’t pin all your hopes on pro-surfing as a career, study hard and have a back up plan! But if you do have a real surfing talent get some professional coaching, train hard and you never know you could be the new John John or Kelly

Good Luck!





Winter surfing in Cornwall with Lucie Donlan

So far this winter the surf in Cornwall has been firing and Northcore team rider Lucie Donlan has been taking full advantage. Here’s an update from Lucie in her own words…

Lucie Donlan Cornwall

Lucie Donlan Cornwall

“November has been a month of pumping waves and amazing wintery sunsets in Cornwall..  Being full time at College it has been more difficult to squeeze in surfs during the week, but the waves have been so good that even getting just half an hour has been worth it! Its a race against time to catch some waves before the sun sets and sometimes it has been so quiet that I have virtually had the beach to myself.
Lucie joined by a seal in the line up

Lucie joined by a seal in the line up

The countdown to Christmas has now begun and this month I am looking forward to a Studio Photoshoot , the Santa Surf Competiton at Fistral Beach, Newquay on the 13th  which should be fun and of course joining in with the traditional Boxing Day Surf.  I would like to wish everyone a very Happy Christmas and don’t forget to check out Northcore’s range of surf accessories for some cool presents and stocking fillers! “
Lucie keeping warm and dry in her beach basha

Lucie keeping warm and dry in her beach basha

UK and Ireland surf lights up

The UK and Ireland coastlines lit up this weekend with solid offshore surf pumping in the English SW, northern Scotland, the North sea and especially along the wave blessed Irish Atlantic coast.

The Cliffs County Clare

Rileys- County Clare

Northcore team rider Peter Conroy was out amongst it with the crew from County Clare charging Rileys which on a swell of 6ft and 15 seconds equates to some very heavy surf when it hits the slab!

Peter Conroy shacked

Peter Conroy shacked

Lets hope winter 2014/15 has a lot more surf to come!

Thanks to Pete Conroy for the images




Sandy Kerr free surfing and competing in Taiwan

Northcore team rider Sandy Kerr recently headed east to the shores of Taiwan on a surf trip with a difference. The island of Taiwan is surf rich but relatively unexplored by the surfing masses so Sandy made the most of his time there and checked out and surfed as many waves as possible. He even managed to squeeze in a WQS competition finishing in 6th place overall! Here’s a brief story from the man himself:

Sandy in flight

Sandy in flight

“I had the best time in Taiwan and the competition was amazing, Unfortunately I struggled to find a wave in my last heat because the conditions were super tricky but I am so happy with my result. With the standard of surfing being at that high level and competitors from all over Asia, Australia, and the US; to get 6th over all in a WQS event is better than some the wins I’ve had!

Sandy takes 6th place at the Taiwanese WQS event

Sandy takes 6th place at the Taiwanese WQS event

On top of all the support from everyone back in the UK with people I don’t even know wishing me the best sharing all my photos etc. I had a amazing response at the comp.”

WQS heat

WQS heat

Images thanks to: Dylan Chiang

Irish Tow Surf Rescue Club leading the way

Jet Ski assist rescue training with the essential sled

Jet Ski assist rescue training with the essential sled: Image Alan Place

Surfing line ups worldwide are becoming increasingly crowded and the big wave locations are no exception. It’s great that so many are sharing the surf stoke but growth and crowds can bring with it inexperience and the inherent consequences which especially among the tow surfing scene can lead to life threatening situations.

Open water pick up in the soup

Open water pick up in the soup. Image Alan Place

Some of the planets biggest, heaviest, coldest waves are found on the West coast of Ireland and here the tow surf scene is thriving at locations like Aileens and Mullaghmore. So stories from the Irish west coast of near misses, injuries and dangerous situations are becoming more common as increasing numbers of tow teams, film crews and spectators enter the water whenever the Atlantic serves up monster swells. So it’s to the credit of some of the local big wave surfers that the safety aspects of surfing heavy Irish waves has been recognised and acted upon in a really positive and responsible way.

All hands to assist hauling the skis in and out of the water

All hands to assist hauling the skis in and out of the water. Image: Alan Place

One of the founders of the Irish Tow Surf Rescue Club, Peter Conroy based in Co Clare has spearheaded an initiative to help train surfers in jet ski rescue techniques, lifesaving, accident and emergency procedures along with common sense advice for when situations take a turn for the worse. Peter’s extensive knowledge from his role as a paramedic and firefighter in Dublin, along with years towing and charging some of the biggest most critical surf ever ridden, places him in a unique position to share and pass on his experience.

Lifesaving, A&E and resuscitation procedures advice from Peter Conroy

Lifesaving, A&E and resuscitation procedures advice from Peter Conroy

Early Nov 2014 Conroy sent out an open invite to all the Irish big wave surfer community as well as to anyone with a vested interest in life saving in the surf to attend a free jet ski safety course at Spanish Point Co Clare. On the day of the event the surf was 8-10ft so the beach break served up some very challenging but ideal conditions for some realistic training. The day was hosted by Peter and assisted by locals Steve Thomas, Seamus Orian and Fionan Cronin as a free event to bring everyone together to share best practice for when the surf goes XXL. There were basics on jet ski maintenance and launching, along with in water jet ski assist pick ups in the white water, lessons on punching through waves on the skis, how to land the skis safely ready for hauling out of the water and more. From there Conroy held an onshore session discussing possible surfing injuries and how to deal with them, plus some simple life saving techniques and instructions.

Pick up

Pick up; Image Alan Place

The first event was attended by some of the big wave surf names from both Clare and Donegal along with guys that spend time in the water and realised the need for better all round safety knowledge. Overall the day was incredibly useful, I know that I personally learned a huge amount and I’m sure all of those who attended felt the same. Lets hope that the injury and life saving techniques never need to be used but if they do there will be a lot more surfers around who are in a much better position to step in to help. Conroy aims to host one of these events every month so if you are in the Clare area I would 100% recommend contacting him about joining up – it will make a difference.

So big respect to Peter Conroy for the the initiative and to all the other lads who helped out – it was incredibly generous to offer their time and expertise to help others and in promoting safety in heavy Irish surf. Thanks Lads

Also a big thanks to Alan Place for sharing these images with us. For more info on Alan’s photographic work visit:



Surf tripping with Lucie Donlan

Northcore team rider Lucie Donlan has been busy this past month competing and travelling for the surf. Heres how Lucie spent October in her own words…

Duck Dive: Image Mauro Laudo

Duck Dive: Image Mauro Ladu

“October has been a great month for me and started off really well with my favourite surf competition “The Jess Memorial” held at Polzeath.  This is a fantastic fun event which raises money every year for the charity CHICKS.  The conditions were pretty tough on the day with a lot of competitors struggling to paddle out in the huge white water, so I was really happy to get a 2nd in the Womens Open.
Lucie takes 2nd place

Lucie takes 2nd place

The last couple of weeks of October saw me flying off to my favourite Canary Island of Fuerteventura  to catch some waves from the start of their Winter swell.  The weather was amazingly hot and the surf didn’t disappoint either!  There were some lulls in the surf, but on those days it was great to explore the Island and have a beach day with a friend in Morro Jable and also to check out the local surf shops in Corralejo - where it was great to see so many of them stocking Northcore products and hardware!
Lucie - Fueteventura: Image Mauro Laudo

Lucie – Fueteventura: Image Mauro Ladu

Also during my stay I was lucky enough to work with Mauro Laudo a professional surf photographer who is based on the Island.  We spent almost a day travelling around the North Coast  finding some of the best surfing conditions..The light was good and Mauro managed to get some great shots in and out of the water. It was such an awesome day and a real privilege to shoot with him.

Canariean Left: Image Mauro Laudo

Canarian Left: Image Mauro Ladu

So with official end of Summer surf and the arrival of this more powerful swell in October I have been extremely grateful for my Northcore leash and tail grip this month.  The leash has withheld some epic wipeouts and the tail grip has given me great stability in the bigger sets! Thanks Northcore!”
Coconut Air freshener!

Coconut Air freshener!

Thanks to Celestine Donlan and Mauro Ladu Photography for the images

Northcore “Frontiers” Surf DVD trilogy

Northcore "Frontiers" DVD

Northcore “Frontiers” DVD

Over the years we’ve been out and about swell chasing in some of the planets more hostile winter surfing environments having fun and getting cold! But in the passed two years we’ve began to document these adventures in film producing a series of award winning shorts on the UK North Sea and Irish Atlantic coasts. We’ve had the privilege of working with some great film makers, amazing surfers and been honored to be supported with music from both Ben Howard and Half Moon Run.

The subsequent short films have become a trilogy of sorts which we’ve named “Frontiers” and which we’ve complied onto a 12 minute DVD which is available now for only £2.50. Either drop us an email or purchase online (once our shop launches early Nov 2014). The films are:

Fathoms Left To Fall

An Award Winning short film of one epic day of huge surf during March 2012 at Mullaghmore Head, County Sligo: “The yin and yang of a trip. The highs and the lows. The epic rides and the epic falls. Surfing isn’t a easy game to get right, once in a lifetime 50 ft faces followed by a endless search for shelter. Tides reveal dry reefs, squalls break promises. Rain dampens enthusiasm, talk of hidden secrets abound but the wind in it’s infinite wisdom keeps them just that, secret. There’s no urgency yesterday’s euphoria still burns. Another trip another day. No fathoms left to fall.”—-


A Northcore Film, Directed by Chris McClean, Director of Photography Mark Waters, Edited by Mark Waters, Produced by Gabe Davies, Executive Producer – Matt Strathern, Music – Ben Howard – Depth over Distance.

Surfers – Gabe Davies, Richie Fitzgerald, Fergal Smith, Tom Lowe, Ollie O’Flaherty, Eric Rebiere, Paul O’Kane, Neil Britton, Tom Butler, Sebastian Steudtner, Andrew Cotton, Al Mennie

Winner of Best International Short Film – Hamburg Surf and Skate Film Festival

Mullaghmore head- During the storm they called Hercules

Mullaghmore head- During the storm they called Hercules


Pilgrimage of Grace

The second installment of a series of awarding winning short films from Northcore, shot on the UK’s rugged North East coast. “North Sea swells are never easy to predict, low pressure charts often allow hopes of fresh swell to soar only to fade as dawn breaks and nature hasn’t delivered. Occasionally those broken promises are redeemed and all the elements combine gracing us with pristine lines of energy sculpted by offshore wind, reef and blessed by sunshine. This is when the North Sea glows and the pilgrimage begins.”


A Northcore Film, by- Chris McClean, Executive Producer – Matt Strathern, Additional Footage- Lewis Arnold.

Music – Lake Poets – Mercury Retrograde Notwithstanding
and Half Moon Run – Full Circle

Surfers – Gabe Davies, Sandy Kerr, Owain Davies and Ryan Hammond

Somewhere on the UK's NE coast

Somewhere on the UK’s NE coast



The storm systems during the winter of 2013/14 have been wholly unprecedented for the shores of Western Europe. Back to back low pressure systems originating in the US eastern seaboard have whipped up seemingly endless storm to hurricane force winds which have battered the coastlines of the UK and Ireland with horrific ferocity. The one upside to the devastating storms has been monstrous open ocean swells sometimes creating Atlantic wave buoy readings in the 30ft and 20 sec range! which have seen surfers at home and abroad buzzing about the possibilities of catching the biggest waves of their lives.

Our film “934″ sprang to life after the Northcore team decided to chase after the mother of all the storms. A low pressure system which began to wind itself up in the Atlantic during the first week of Jan 2014 eventually reached a near record low pressure reading of 934mb. The system was so fierce it even spawned its own names, officially “Hercules” and unofficially the “Black Hole swell”, that generated massive surf which travelled North from Scotland right down to Morocco lighting up every big wave spot on the way. Some of the Northcore team riders selected to gather at Mullaghmore head in County Sligo, Ireland to meet up with Hercules and in the tense, quite moments before the collective tow session go button was pressed we captured some of the riders thoughts on what it feels like before setting out to tackle one of the planets heaviest waves.



PRODUCED BY: Matt Strathern, CAMERA: James Skerritt, EDIT: Simon Weir

SURFERS: Conor Maguire, Peter Conroy, Sandy Kerr, Ollie O’Flaherty and Paul O’Kane


Northcore groms represent at 2014 Euro Juniors Azores

The Azores Euro Surf Juniors 2014 kicks off tomorrow and Northcore grom team riders Stan Norman and Joseph Morris are on their way now representing their respective nations teams, England and Wales.

Jo Morris on the way - representing Wales

Jo Morris on the way – representing Wales

The event begins 13th Sept – 21st Sept on the Azores Ribeira Grande on Sao Miguel’s North shore and Northcore wishes all the very best of success to all of the home nations teams and especially to Stan and Jo!!

Stan Norman picking up his new board- representing England

Stan Norman picking up his new board- representing England

Euro Juniors 2014

Euro Juniors 2014


Skateboard storage rack: Northcore Skate Division

We’re stoked that our latest Northcore skateboard division longboard is coming into stock this week, with its 41″ bamboo deck, ABEC 7′s and cruisey soft PU wheels its a sick stick! So when we get new boards we of course have to try them out, but our Northcore HQ warehouse has a whole range of sample boards scattered around for all the staff (or who ever is passing through) to have a play on. It’s great fun but leaves the dilemma of where to store these boards neatly and safely out of the way which is why this product grabbed our attention.

STYB-001 rack image_1

The “Store Your Board” rack is made in the US of A from lightweight molded ABS plastic and claims to be easy to install so we thought we’d have a go. We got our hands on the rack which comes with two plastic pieces each with three arms/tiers for storage, plus 4 screws and 4 drywall (plasterboard) anchors.

10 minutes a screw driver and you're all set

10 minutes a screw driver and you’re all set

So we set about fixing it onto an office wall which is made of plasterboard and the 4 pictures above show the steps. The only tools we needed were a cross head screw driver and a spirit level. The anchor screws provided are self tapping so no drilling required. Just line up where you want the racks, using a level (or line up using your eyes) mark the holes with a pencil, locate the anchor screws, apply a little pressure with the screw driver and tighten into the wall! Then screw in the screw fixings to a point where theres only a few mm of the head showing, slide in the plastic racking arms, tighten and Ta Da, Skateboard racks!

rack 'em, stack 'em and pack em!

rack ‘em, stack ‘em and pack em!

The Store Your Board rack turned out to be a super neat storage solution for our skateboards including our 41″ pin tail bamboo longboard, our retro beach cruiser and mini Penny style cruiser the Northcore “Candy Bar”, but looking at the rack’s website it’ll also store wakeboards, snowboards, skis, scooters etc etc… we give it a big thumbs up!


NEW Northcore product: “Hook up” magnetic wetsuit hanger

Here at Northcore we’re all about being solution lead when it comes to product development. We love either making a new unique product to fill a niche or improve existing surf products and our “Hook-Up” magnet is one such wonderful little device.
Northcore "Hook Up"

Northcore “Hook Up”


Our “Hook Up” hanger is a versatile rubber coated magnet designed to allow hanging of wetsuits, sport apparel and clothing on flat metal surfaces. The “Hook Up” hanger is great for road and camping trips as items can be hung from cars hatchbacks and doors without fear of scratching the paint work or them falling off as the 65mm diameter magnet has a 20kg pull strain which is sturdy enough to easily support a soaking wet 6mm winter wetsuit. Stick it on and hang your kit!

NOCO82_Hook up _hanger

  • 65mm diameter
  • 20kg pull weight
  • silicone rubber coated
  • M4 anti-rust stainless steel hook
  • Hook Up is most effective with max pull capacity when placed against a fully flat metal surface
Small, handy and versatile

Small, handy and versatile

UK RRP is £9.99/€12.99
weight: 0.12kg