by Mike Purpus
In all this year’s South Bay Boardriders Surf Contest season, Beck Adler had total control over the Grom Division and was a consistent finalist in the Boy’s Division. Beck’s older brother West was in every Longboard Division Final.
I met the Adler brother’s dad, Gary, at the SBBC “King of the South Bay” contest and told him I had to do a story on his sons.
He agreed and a few days later Gary was on the phone filling me in on his two boys.
“My wife Emma and I have a close knit family,” he said. “ When it comes to Beck and West they are the Ying and Yang of surfing.”
West rides nothing but old school heavy single fins and has never touched a surf leash in his life. Once in a while he will jump on a 70’s egg shape just for fun.
“He doesn’t like surf contests that much but competes just to stay close to his little brother,” Gary said.
Beck believes shorter and wider is better no matter how many fins he needs to keep from spinning out.
“He sleeps in his contest jersey because he can’t wait for the next heat,” Gary said. “They have a close symbiotic relationship out of respect for each other’s surfing that makes Emma [the boy’s Mother] and I love them all the more.”
After our phone conversation, I couldn’t wait to schedule the interview. A week later, right on time I hear a knock on my apartment door from the very cute Emma Adler and her two boys standing on my door step.
The little, 4’8”, 74 lbs., 12 year old junior high school Beck with his short sandy blond hair, freckles running wild, and braces was chomping at the bit to get the interview started.
The older 15 year old West, with his long scraggly Rasta looking sand brown hair, quietly flopped his tall 5’9” thin 135 lbs. body down on the sofa a few feet away from Beck.
Beck and West Adler live in Venice have spending almost every weekend surfing the South side of the Santa Monica Pier.
“The locals call it Driftwoods,” said Beck.
“I didn’t even know how to swim but that didn’t stop Dad from shoving me into waves on his big soft top,” West said.
Beck got side tracked skateboarding after learning to surf and feels he didn’t get serious about surfing until nine.
“When I turned nine I was surfing everyday thanks to our mom driving us down after school,” he said.
West rode shortboards until his 13th birthday when he got a new 8’2” Pat Ryan, 3 fin, thruster ET Surfboard mini-longboard that gave him his start on longer boards. Currently, he rides a traditional single fin 9’4” Farberow Model by Scott Anderson.
“I made my own 5’ single fin to play on when the waves are fun,” he said.
Beck has two 5’ Anderson Thrusters. One is a round pin and the other a squash tail now that he is sponsored by Anderson Surfboards Beck started surfing in contests when he was 10 year Old in the Hurley Rip My Shred Stick at the Santa Monica Pier.
“I won a Go Pro Camera and I’ve surfed in a lot of contests since,” he said.
He surfed in all the National Scholastic Surfing Association Surfing Contests and won the Grom Division and placed second overall in the Boy’s Division of the South Bay Boardriders Surf League.
West was 13 when he started surfing in all the Western Surfing Association Surfing Contests then finished 3rd overall in the Longboard Division of the South Bay Boardriders Surf League.
Beck and West surf the Venice Pier almost every day because they have it almost to themselves. They enjoy surfing with Wes Santos, Billy Uron, Mike and Brett Riggins.
“The locals there are really cool and fun to surf with. We can’t name anyone because we would feel terrible if we left anyone out,” West said.
They love surfing Ventura’s Emma Woods, Malibu, Trestles and Cardiff and went to Costa Rica for Spring Break.
“We got a lot of good waves down deep in Mexico,” Beck said.
West cuts in, “We really want to go to Hawaii to try the North Shore and Australia’s Noosa Heads”.
Beck’s favorite maneuver is big airs but loves to carve cutbacks too. His favorite surfers are Kelly Slater and Dane Reynolds because they are not afraid to try anything. West loves the 60’s style with big drop knee cutbacks and long smooth nose rides. His favorite surfers are Joel Tudor, Harrison Roach and Tyler Hatzikian because they are the best old school longboarders. DZ
Beck: Hurley, Anderson Surfboards, ZJ Boarding House
West: ZJ Boarding House, Shaper Supply Co., DA Fins