Corky Carroll

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Corky Carroll
Icone surf portail fr.png
Personal information
Born (1947-09-29) September 29, 1947 (age 66)
Alhambra, California
Residence Huntington Beach, California
Surfing career
Years active 1959-1972
Major achievements US Surfing Championship (1966-70)
International Surfing Championship (3 times)
Website Corky Carroll Surf Co.

Corky Carroll (born September 29, 1947)[1] is a professional American surfer and is considered a pioneer in the sport by becoming the first real professional surfer as well as being the first to receive endorsements.[2]

Life and career[edit]

Carroll started his career in 1959 at a very early age and by the time he retired in 1972, he was only 24 years old. From 1966-1970 he won the United States Surfing Championship and also won the International Surfing Championship three times. Altogether, Carroll won over 100 surfing competitions. After his surfing career, he became a musician and recorded nine albums along with writing several books on surfing. He subsequently opened a surfing school in California and designed surf boards. He frequently serves as the color commentator for world surfing events such as the annual competition in Huntington Beach, and pens a column in the Orange County Register.[3] He has a home in Zihuatanejo, Mexico where he offers surf adventure trips.[4]

  • 1959

At age 11, places 3rd in his first surf contest, the inaugural U.S. Surfboard Championship, at Huntington Beach, the first major surf contest ever to be held in California. [1]

Helped design the first authentic surf trunks with Nancy Katin and are still in production today.

  • 1962

Wins the junior division of the San Clemente Surf Capades contest. [2]

  • 1963

Lands sponsorship with Hobie Atler, the largest surfboard manufacturer in the world at that time, and becomes the youngest member of the surf team.

  • 1964

At age 16, becomes the first surfer ever to be paid to surf. [3]

Bruce Brown invites Corky to join the The Endless Summer promotional tour in order to promote the most famous surf movie of all time.

Appears on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson in New York and teaches Johnny to skateboard.

Appears on the first of three Merv Griffin Shows.

  • 1965

Wins first place at the Tom Morey Nose Riding Invitational – The first contest ever to pay prize money. [4]

Lands endorsement contract with Jantzen Sportswear appearing on the back cover of almost every Surfer Magazine for seven straight years.

  • 1966

Achieves USSA (surf tour) #1 ranking and the first of five consecutive “best all around surfer” awards.

  • 1967

Wins International Big Wave Championship in Peru.

Designs the first production short board solid in the U.S. called the 1967 Hobie Corky Carroll “Mini-model."

Appears on the TV show “What’s My Line”, trying to stump the panel as the world’s first “professional” surfer.

Befriends fellow surfer/musician Dennis Wilson of the Beach Boys while filming his surfing for the background video.

Meets Mike Nesmith and the rest of the Monkees. 10 years later, Mike produced Corky’s hit gold record, “Tan Punks on Boards.”

  • 1968

Voted #1 surfer in the world by his surfing peers, the greatest award of his career.

Wins World Small Wave Championship in Florida.

Pictured on the cover of Surfer Magazine “hanging ten.”

His Hobie CC Mini model achieves record sales.

  • 1962–72

Corky wins over 100 surf contests worldwide.


  1. ^ Carroll, Corky (August 13, 2011). "Becoming a surfing diehard requires some sacrifices". The Orange County Register. p. Local 1. Retrieved August 13, 2011. 
  2. ^ "Corky Carroll". International Surfing Museum, Huntington Beach. Retrieved 2007-06-15. 
  3. ^ "Don't want surfer's ear? Keep it dry" (PDF). The Sonos Group / The Ear and Balance Center. 
  4. ^ "Put this adventure on the list of 'Oops' moments". 

External links[edit]