"I towed Summa in, and I slowed down to get her deep as I could, but after she let go I couldn't see anything," shaper, surfer and father Dylan Longbottom told the WSL. "Then I saw the full double shotgun spit and watched her fly out with her hands on her head. I was one proud, and relieved, Dad."
For Summa, who turned 18 last month, it was another successful mission to add to her already impressive resume. Having ticked the box on Teahupo'o, Nazare, Outside Corner, G-Land and Ours, this secret New South Wales South Coast slab showed yet again that she is gaining big wave experience at a rate that few of her peers can match.
Even more admirably, she was riding a board that she had helped shape with her dad. For the last six months she has been working for Dylan Surfboards, out of the factory in Cronulla. She shaped her first board this year just in time for the Kirra swell in February. This was her favorite RX5 model, designed by Dylan, but which she sanded and finished herself.
"I finished school last year, and as I follow Dad on all his surfing and shaping trips all over the world, it made sense to work with him," Summa said. "The more I learn about my boards and the way they work, the better surfer I will be. And by making them myself it's probably the best way to learn."
The pair had initially intended to surf another South Coast slab, only to find it breaking on dry reef. Motoring down the coast, they came across another spitting left. With the crowd dwindling due to the low tide, and given the all-clear by the remaining bodyboarders in the lineup, Dylan started towing Summa.
"After each ride the photographer, Ben [Bagley], was like, ‘Okay Summa, just two meters deeper on the next one,'" recalls Dylan. "So she was getting deeper and deeper and then on her last wave, probably her tenth, she was perfectly positioned. To make that wave, on a board she helped make and have the photographer right in the spot, well, it was just a really magic moment."