Surfer Gearoid McDaid has just kicked off the European WQS in Israel and is also making the most of some spectacular swells around Mullaghmore to fine-tune his skills ahead of three competitions in April.
February 20, 2017
I returned to competition after spending most of December just chilling at home, not doing a whole lot and just relaxing. Everything started back again in January when I went to Portugal for a week for some training before my first European World Qualifying Series event of the year in Israel.
Israel was great. I was my first time there and I spent two and half week taking it all in. The waves though ended up being pretty flat the whole time I was there. You really need a storm out there to get decent waves. They ran the competition anyway and I ended up not doing so well.
It was a great experience to be over there, to get back into the first competition of the year and to get a feel for competition again. I was pretty disappointed with the result at the time, but it’s what happens in surfing. Sometimes you have to lose to learn and I’ve learned from how it went.
I’ve been knocked out by how good the waves are at home. We’ve just had one of the best swells of the year and probably one of the best surfing months of the past year. I came home from Israel knowing how good the waves were going to be. The waves are so good in Ireland this time of year that I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else.
We’ve been waiting for swells like this all winter and the past week has been pretty amazing. I’ve been surfing a lot around Mullaghmore, trying to get into some of the more challenging spots there and it’s been a lot of fun.
The next round of competition for me takes place in April with three back-to-back competitions taking me from Portugal to Spain and back to Portugal. I’ll be training and preparing for that at home, making sure that my fitness and conditioning is what it should be and that I’m ready to get the results I want to achieve.
Catching November waves
January 15, 2017
Surfer Gearoid McDaid is making the most of his off-season but the Irish weather has not delivered the type of waves he is used to enjoying off the west coast of Ireland.
I’ve been spending the past few days down in Clare trying to make the most of the waves which have been pretty slow for November.
I had high hopes after some good waves in October but that’s the way it goes. The weather this year is very settled with no major storms at sea to provide the big swells that we surfers enjoy.
It’s cold as you’d expect for November but it’s still 11 to 12 degrees in the water. It’s warmer in it than it is out of it. It’s certainly cold when you get in but once you get in there and get moving it’s grand.
It’s been great to spend the past few weeks enjoying some downtime at home after a busy season travelling. I have one eye on the New Year though and have already started training for the new season.
The first event of World Qualifying Series takes place in Israel in January so the focus now is on maintaining fitness which involves a lot of work in the gym and swimming pool.
My training in the pool is about doing 1,000 metres swims in different times and breaking the distance down into sprints and longer swim stuff to build up my paddling power, which is what you need to catch waves.
The gym work is a lot more focused on core work and maintaining good overall fitness. A lot of the work I do in the gym is about strengthening my core, especially my legs.
For the run into Christmas I will be getting out for some swells around Europe and then making it back home for a week at Christmas. I’m looking forward to that week off and the festivities ahead of another busy season of competition and travel.
Winning the Irish nationals!
October 20, 2016
Surfer Gearoid McDaid is enjoying some time at home after a busy competition schedule and press work for his new sponsor Rip Curl.
The past month has been a busy time for me in and out of the water.
It was good to get home after competing in France. You have to make the most of the weather when you’re home and I started straight into training to get ready for the winter swells. They were pumping pretty much every day.
After a few weeks at home I was back in France, not to compete but just to enjoy some free surfing and to try and get some photos for one of my sponsors. We caught some really good waves and got some really great shots with some of the world’s best photographers.
The photographs from the trip are set to feature in Carve Surfing Magazine, which is one of Europe’s most popular surf mags, so it proved to be a successful visit to France on that front.
I also picked up a new main sponsor when I was there. I used to be with Quicksilver but I have now moved to Rip Curl. I’ve spent a lot of time since I got home shooting video clips for my new sponsor and trying to catch what’s great about surfing in Ireland. The last few days have been really good.
One of the world’s best surfers, Mick Fanning, is also sponsored by Rip Curl. He’s come to Ireland and I am showing him around, searching for the perfect waves, which has been great for the last few days. Hopefully we can catch some more good ones before he leaves.
Next month I heading to Scotland on a trip for another sponsor and to enjoy some time surfing with my good friends.
Surfing in France
September 7, 2016
Join Gearoid on a trip to France for a surfing competition in his August vlog.
Pursuing the dream of World Championship Tour.
August 24, 2016
Surfer Gearoid McDaid has had a busy time away from home as he pursues his dream of qualifying for the World Championship Tour.
Making it to the top in surfing means spending time away from home and I’ve spent most of the past month travelling throughout Europe for training or competition.
Ireland has some great surfing but you can’t beat surfing in warm weather, so I was happy to make the most of two weeks in Portugal and to enjoy some warm weather training. I caught some really fun waves and also got to spend some quality time with friends and sponsors down there.
I also travelled to England for competition but the waves were super bad. I couldn’t catch the waves I wanted, which happens sometimes. A lot depends on luck with the waves, so I was disappointed to go out in round two.
I am in France for a competition right now and everything is going perfectly. The waves are just right. My heats are going well and I am chalking up some good scores, so hopefully I can get a nice result out of it.
After this I travel south from another competition. It helps to have one competition running into the next. Otherwise you’re competing, training then working on refocusing for the next competition.
The summer has flown by. It’s back to Sligo once these two competitions are done. I am looking forward to getting home and to getting some waves over winter, even if the water is going to be much colder than I am enjoying here in France.
Gearoid McDaid – Sligo Surfing
August 8, 2016
Ever wonder what a day in a life of a surfer looks like? Take a look at Gearoid’s first Nissan Generation Vlog in which he surfs some waves in Sligo!