Phil Jarratt making Tracks in surfing history

RENOWNED surfing journalist Phil Jarratt will visit Hamilton tonight  to discuss his new book, which follows the history of surfboard riding in Australia.

 Jarratt worked as a Sydney Morning Herald journalist in Newcastle before he embarked on a career in surf journalism, with roles that have included editor of surfing magazine Tracks in the sport’s glory days in the 1970s, European head of marketing and then US head of special projects at Quiksilver, scriptwriter on surfing films  and author of more than 27 books.

His latest book, Surfing Australia: A Complete History of Surfboard Riding in Australia, was published this month.

‘‘It took two years of specific research and writing but a lifetime of archiving a personal collection of surfing history.’’ 

 Jarratt said Newcastle had played a significant role in the development of surfboard riding in Australia. 

‘‘From the pioneering of professional surfing at the early Mattara festival contests in the 1960s, through to the MR Classics of recent years, Newcastle has always been at the forefront of competitive surfing and development programmes for kids.’’

He said it was fitting his book tour stopped in the city, which had always been one of the most vibrant centres of surfing in Australia.

‘‘I always loved the fact that the city is right at the beach.’’

Tonight’s free event is at 6pm at MacLean’s Booksellers, Hamilton.

Weekender magazine Tomorrow

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