It's been a big few weeks for 17-year-old Summer Longbottom. Having already surfed Teahupo'o, Outside Corner and Nazare -- all by the time she was 15 -- she recently towed Ours and solid Narrabeen on the recent run of swell on Australia's East Coast.
"I just surf where ever my dad surfs," Summa told the WSL. "And that day he was surfing Ours."
Summa's dad is Dylan, the big wave surfer and shaper. He not only makes Summa's boards, but also the guns and tow boards for some of the world's best big-wave surfers. He has overseen his daughter's competitive career from shore, and recent, rapid, big wave education from his ski.
The Longbottoms are based in Bali, but after a trip home to Australia were unable to return due to Covid-19 and instead set up camp in Cronulla. That just happened to coincide with the recent run of incredible swell on the East Coast and led to Summa's first taste of the infamous wave at Cape Solander, also known as Ours.
The wave had been tackled notably by Layne Beachley and Laura Enever in the past, but Summa is considered to be the youngest female surfer to attempt the wave and the first to ride it backside.
On her first wave she came unstuck, was caught inside, wore two sets on the head and was then washed up the rocks. Eventually she jumped back in where her dad was waiting with the sled to save her.
However lickings are all part and parcel of any surfer who is tackling slabs like Ours. She bravely returned to catch another wave before calling it quits. Only a few days later though she was back on the ski behind her dad, as another solid 10-foot swell hit the northern beaches of Sydney.
She was towed into some huge beachbreak barrels by Dylan, and again, had to take some serious punishment for the rewards. However, as ever, Summa came up smiling and earned even more respect from the small crew of underground chargers she was surfing with.
The talented surfer clearly has a natural ability and mentality for surfing waves of consequence. If this trajectory continues -- and it will as long as she keeps surfing with her dad -- there's no limit to where she may end up. Watch this space.