“I got involved when my son was about 10 or 11 years old and he wanted to compete. I drove him to an [Eastern Surfing Association] contest, and that became habitual,” Anthony said. “He wanted to keep competing, so I was there all the time at these day-long events helping set up and tear down. Eventually I was judging, and next thing I know I am the director of the organization. One thing led to another. Now, I’m the director for the ASF up here in New York.”
Through the years, Anthony learned that from a competitive standpoint, there are really only a few things the judges are truly looking for.
“The judges are looking for radical controlled maneuvers in the critical section of the wave,” Anthony said, explaining how wave conditions play a key role in determining what judges are looking for. “If we were standing here and it was head-high barrels, they’re going to be looking for guys that are tucking into the barrel. If we’ve got a decent swell with open-face waves but not barreling, they’re going to be looking for guys who are making radical turns on the face of the wave right where it’s breaking.”
Beyond that, it’s all about personal style, attitude and demeanor.
Now, as head of the Atlantic Surfing Federation, Anthony runs events all along the East Coast throughout the summer. The first ASF competition of the year was held at Rockaway Beach’s Rockstock and Barrel surf-and-music festival just a few blocks from his home the past weekend.
Rockstock was the first competition of the Atlantic Surfing Federation’s summer series, which will culminate with an October championship event at Sebastian Inlet in Florida.
“It’s a three-day contest down there, and we’ve been pretty lucky and had very contestable waves the three years we’ve been running it,” Anthony said.