Dru Adler is a very nifty man. About 5 hours ago, the Gold Coast surfer posted a clip on his Instagram accompanied by the message, “Finally pulled off the backside 180 kickflip!” along with a delirious emoji crying tears of laughter. The clip is extraordinary: 2 foot left, a couple of pumps, crumbling lip providing a perfect launchpad, and a backside air reverse of the kind you’ve seen several thousand times before. But with a difference: his surfboard completes a kickflip motion in addition to the backside rotation, making it what’s known in skateboarding circles as a “backside flip”. The first one ever on a surfboard!
Kickflips on surfboards are horrible things, but this one looked smooth and natural, not quite mid-’90s Tom Penny but a damn sight better than the eyesores in which Zoltan Torkos specialises. The Inertia promptly published a piece entitled, ‘BREAKING: Watch the First-Ever Backside Flip Landed on a Surfboard’. You will watch the footage and wonder and then watch it again. It is scarcely credible. It is not credible.
For there is one problem, and it is laid bare by another of Dru’s Insty clips, published a week ago and featuring at the end the very same wave, except this time looking slightly less extraordinary. Dru Adler, you nifty man!