November 24, 1969 |
Santa Cruz, California, U.S.
|Residence||Santa Cruz, California|
|Height||6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)|
|Weight||200 lb (91 kg)|
|Major achievements||-(1997)1st O'neill Cold Water Classic, (Santa Cruz, California)
-(2004)5th Quiksilver Eddie Aikau Invitational (Oahu, Hawaii)
-(2009)3rd Billabong Pico Alto Invitacional (Punta Hermosa, Peru)
-(2009)3rd place, Quiksilver Ceremonial Punta de Lobos (Pichilemu, Chile)
-(2010)3rd place, Billabong Pico Alto Copa Burn (Punta Hermosa, Peru)
-(2011)1st Billabong Pico Alto Copa Burn
-1st place, Crowned Big Wave World Tour Champion 2011/2012
-1st place, Mavericks Invitational 2012/2013 (Half Moon Bay, California)
|Stance||Regular (natural) foot|
|Shaper(s)||John Carper (JC Surfboards), Stretch Surfboards and Freeline Surfboards|
|Quiver||5'10", 6'1", 6'4", 6'6" & 10"2|
|Favorite waves||Mavericks (Half Moon Bay, California)
Waimea Bay (North Shore, Oahu)
Steamer Lane (Santa Cruz)
Cortez Bank (Deep ocean, 100 miles west of San Diego, California)
Peter Mel, born November 24, 1969 in Santa Cruz, California, is a professional surfer and the current 2012/2013 Mavericks Invitational Surfing Champion. Mel began his surfing life in Capitola, California before moving on to Santa Cruz. His father John, who started the family business Freeline Surf Design the same year Pete was born, made his boards over the years and gradually brought his son under his shaping wing. In the shadow of Steamer Lane locals Vince Collier, Kevin Reed and especially Richard Schmidt, Mel rose quickly through the line-up ranks with an unprecedented crop of young surfers. He idolized Schmidt for his casual demeanor on land and his bravery in larger surf. Like Schmidt, he would spend many winters in Hawaii, enjoying the less-restrictive conditions and developing his signature style, not to mention a taste for the big stuff (surf).
Throughout the ’90s, Mel found moderate success on the domestic and ASP World Tour Qualifying Series, before finally finding his niche during California’s El Nino winter of 1997-98. At the age of 29, when most pros are hanging up their jerseys and looking hard for careers in the surfing industry, Mel was really just coming into his own.
Known in Santa Cruz as the “Condor” for his extreme wingspan (A nickname Mel was less than fond of), Peter was a shoo-in to claim the $50,000 Billabong XXL Big-Wave Challenge, for paddling into the winter’s biggest wave, but this was not to be and Peter ended up just short of the honor that year. Mel finished eighth in the 1998 Surfer Magazine Reader’s Poll Awards and established himself as California’s premier big-wave rider. Today, Peter Mel is Director of Marketing for Quiksilver's Waterman Collection and continues to Surf as a Professional Athlete and help run the family business in Santa Cruz. Most notably Peter has conquered a dream of his being crowned the Big Wave World Champion 2011/2012.
The Big Wave World Tour concluded its third successful season crowning Big Wave World Tour Champion, Peter Mel.The season started out strong at the extremely consistent big wave spot Punta de Lobos, Chile, home of the Quiksilver Ceremonial. The contest was held under sunny skies, perfect offshore winds and flawless 40+ft waves. The second stop on the tour, Billabong Pico Alto Invitacional, was held at the famed Peruvian Big Wave Spot, in clean and consistent 35–40 ft waves. The seemingly endless walls allowed legendary big wave rider, Peter Mel, to carve himself all the way to the final, impressing the judges enough on his final wave to ensure his first world tour win. Immediately following his victory, fellow Quiksilver rider, Kelly Slater tweeted, ”It’s about time Pete.” Peter Mel cemented his legacy as one of the best big wave surfers to come out of Santa Cruz long before he rode the glassy walls at Pico Alto in Peru. Sure, he hadn't won any notable events in his more than 25 years of competing, but he was always close, often tasting the spray of celebratory beer but not getting showered in it. Mel made the best of it, but by his own admission, the lack of first-place placards created a bit of a cloud over his otherwise illustrious career. Well, Mel doesn't have to worry about that anymore. That's what putting Big Wave World Tour Champion in front of his name can do for a guy. "For obvious reasons, I'm very excited about it. Any time you throw a world title in front of anything, it's what it says. It's an achievement," said Mel, who accepted the award on April 29. "It's not something I thought I would achieve in my dreams.
Peter Mel Is a remarkable surfer and is related to John Mel. John Mel is Peter Mel's father. John is a very talented surfer as well. Peter named his son after his father who has now followed in both of their footsteps. Young John Mel is a two time National Champion himself. Peter has appeared in movies such as Step into Liquid, Riding Giants and Chasing Mavericks.
- "PETER MEL EMPLOYS ALL ASPECTS OF SURFING TO WIN THE RB5X". Surfing Magazine. 2003-06-23. Retrieved 2009-07-05.