Boardrider of the Month: Edward “Speedy” Patrick
By B. Bennison
When going overseas on a surf adventure, there are certain qualities you look for in your chosen travel partner.
At the top of any surfer’s list would be the desire to log in numerous hours in the water, that they always smile their way through any situation, however bad.. and the ability to fire a bullet through a quarter at 100 yards.
Okay, maybe that last one isn’t on everyone’s list, but it’s certainly on mine. I admit I didn’t realize it at first, but having a professionally trained sniper ninja adds a lot to a surf adventure. For instance, you will be on time to every break at its peak surfability (tide recon has already been done while you were sleeping), meals will be healthy and eaten quickly (digestion takes place during your paddle out), and if it’s a night on the beers, you will be expected to maintain and hold your composure under any and all sketchy situations (a contigency plan for a fast exit has already been formulated while you were putting on your flip flops). And last, but certainly not least, fun must be had by all (if you need sleep, it had better be done while he’s in the water) — no exceptions. If you do not somehow adhere to this simple rule, you might have the fun beaten into you.
I kid (not really), but Speedy is truly one of the funnest dudes I’ve ever surfed with. Add to that his being a seasoned sniper for the Kennedy Space Center, and you have one unique individual.
To top it all off, Speedo was just recently awarded NASA’s “Exceptional Bravery Medal” for disregarding his own safety and using swift judgement to rescue a man who had been caught in a rip current and dragged 200 yards from shore. After a failed rescue attempt by a paddleboarder, the victim was in a dire situation. Speedo commandeered the paddleboard, and through the rip and cold and steady breaking of head-high waves, pulled the man onto the board and guided him safely back to shore where he was treated by KSC Emergency Medics.
When I aked him about all of this, the only thing he regretted was that after making sure the guy was safe, he wished he could have paddled back out, because the waves were actually pretty good. But, alas, he was on the clock.
So congrats to you, Speedo, for being awarded “Boardrider of the Month.”
(And for the medal thing, too.)
What was your most memorable surf trip?
My trip to Hatteras with Barry Pendly when I was a kid. We had so much fun we had forgotten to call our Moms to let them know we were okay.
What’s been the most positive change you’ve seen in surfing since you started?
The Internet. Wave forecasting has become so finely tuned that now, when I take valuable time off work, I know I’m going to score good surf.
The most negative thing ti have happened?
The Internet — and wave forecasting. Now everyone knows.
Australia/Fiji with my good buddies, the Bronte Boys. But I’m happy to say it’s no longer a dream — I’m leaving at the end of the month!
Hawaii. First trip, first paddle out, first wave. Got pitched at 10′ Sunset, snapped my leash, and lost my board in the rip. Had to borrow a board from a stranger to paddle back out and get it. It took hours!
What was the sketchiest thing that’s ever happened to you traveling?
Nothing really. But I’m going on this trip to Fiji with a good buddy who is an absolute magnet for trouble — Matt Dee. I’ll be taking every precaution. Maybe…
Has being a deadly sniper made you a better surfer?
I’m much better experienced with being shot out of a barrel.
Who were your greatest inspirations during gromhood?
Greg Loehr, Greg Mungal, Tim Briers, and Jerry Anderson.
What qualities do you most admire in your friends?
If you to be turned into any monster, what kind would you be?
The Wolfman. Arrrrroooooooo! The moon does crazy things to a man…
What fictional character would you most identify with?
From what aspect of surfing do you derive the most pleasure?
Years ago, I would have said getting barreled, but two years ago I helped out Todd Holland at his School Of Surf and found a whole different kind of stoke when I pushed kids into their first waves. That look on their faces is priceless. After that, I got involved in helping out with Surfers for Autism and a cystic fibrosis charity as well. I love it.
I see you riding a lot of different boards. What’s being ridden the most these days?
I have a board for all occasions. I’m extremely lucky to have some great friends who also happen to be unreal shapers. Todd Holland, Matt Kechele, and Stu Sharpe have made me some amazing boards of all shapes and sizes. That’s part of the fun about living around here. Instead of griping about the waves, I’ve found it better to have the right board for the right conditions. Oh, and one of my favorites, which unfortunately hangs on the wall a little too much, is a 7’6″ gun shaped by Pat Rawson. I don’t think Cocoa Beach will ever produce the juice she needs though. That’s what Mexico is for!
Where have you been picking up The Resident Speedo? You do pick up The Resident, don’t you?
Café Surfinista: my favorite place for land bowls! Bruce and Diane have created the perfect grinds and vibes!
Any last words or shout outs?
A big shout out to all the guys at work and to the Bronte Boys,… battendown the hatches!