Thanks for tuning into the paddlewoo podcast. Today’s guests are Caio and Ian Vaz. The famous Vaz Brothers. They have a reality surf show in Brazil, running 3 seasons. Caio is the current World Champ of the Standup World Tour, the most prestigious title in paddle surfing. He also just won the Male Paddler of the Year at the SUP awards last month in California.
Caio and Ian recorded this episode here in the Blue Zone of Costa Rica, on the Progression Project. I haven’t mentioned it on the show yet, but now that it is finished, I can let the cat out of the bag. Back a few months ago, I was talking to Mo Freitas, and told him about an idea I had… The idea was to get 8 of the world’s best paddle surfers, get them all in one location and run a peer voting contest. And to award the most progressive paddle surfer with a $5,000 prize at the end of the week. Mo liked the idea and so I started kicking around dates and the invite list.
Well, then I was out in Cali for the Huntington event and right before the event started the Standup world tour announced at a meeting there that the event in Huntington would be the final event for the year and the world champ would be crowned at that event. This meant that their schedules had just opened up for early November. I talked to some of the guys that were in on the project at that time, Mo, Noa, Fisher, Kieran and Zane and we decided to have a get together to talk about the project. I had rented a house right by the pier in huntington and right after the surf event we got together to talk about the Progression Project. It was pretty wild… by that point I had also talked to Caio and Giorgio and some of the surfers had mentioned it to other surfers… and we had about 12 or so guys in the house stoked on the project. We talked for a bit and everyone was super into the idea, but no one wanted it to be a contest. These guys travel all around the world competing with each other and they just wanted to go on a surf trip together. That was fine with me, and we decided to do a movie around the Progression Project.
The dates were set and for the last 13 days I’ve had 9 of the world’s best paddle surfers here in the Blue Zone absolutely killing it! It has been one of the best projects I’ve worked on and I’m super excited to get the finished product out to you guys. That’s going to be a few months, post edit, but I can say we did score and the boundaries of paddle surfing were defined on the trip. Caio and Ian arrived first and after our second surf, we sat down to record this podcast.
Before we get to the episode, I need to say that Blue Zone SUP sponsored a large part of the progression project and we’d be stoked to surf with you here in the blue zone… Email us for information about camps and check our Facebook page Facebook.com/bluezonesup for photos of the Progression Project and our new headquarters. During the progression project we had at one point 13 guys living in the compound. Normally we like smaller camps of about 6 guys, but apparently we’ve got space to do bigger groups. December is a great time and we just opened up the week of December 6th — shoot us an email if you want to come down. We need a group of 4 to run, so bring some buddies.
Alright, lets get into it…