BACK HOME: Former professional Kieren Perrow is back surfing for Byron Bay in the Australian Boardriders Battle at Newcastle this weekend. Photo WSL
BACK HOME: Former professional Kieren Perrow is back surfing for Byron Bay in the Australian Boardriders Battle at Newcastle this weekend. Photo WSL

Perrow motivated for battle with Byron Bay

A CHANCE to give back to his home club and help Byron Bay in the Australian Boardriders Battle this weekend is motivating former professional surfer Kieren Perrow.

He is part of a strong Byron Bay team which includes former world No 3 Danny Wills and rising star Soli Bailey.

Perrow, 43, grew up surfing in the Byron Bay Boardriders Club before a 12-year career on the professional tour.

He has remained an influential figure in the sport after taking the role of World Surf League commissioner between 2014-2019.

He still works for WSL in a coaching role and will compete in the Australian Boardriders Battle for the first time.

“It’s pretty special to able to represent the club at a big event like this,” Perrow said.

“They were always there for me growing up when I was trying to make a career of it.

“I looked up to Danny Wills and then I got to live out my dream like he did.

“The timing was right this year for both of us (to compete) and I’m really motivated.

“I’ve done Kirra teams challenge a few times since I retired but that’s about it.”

Now in its seventh season, the Australian Boardriders Battle is the country’s biggest grassroots boardriders event, involving more than 60 of Australia’s best boardrider clubs and $110,000 in prizemoney.

The series is officially sanctioned by the WSL, which allows professional surfers the opportunity to represent their club at the state qualifying events and national final.

The winning team can provide a major boost to its club with $20,000 prizemoney.

“There will be a few laughs along the way but we’ll be taking it serious,” Perrow said.

“Any club would love that sort of prizemoney and it would be great for Byron Bay.

“There is a fair bit of strategy in team events and you have to allow everyone enough time to surf.

“Wave selection and time management is the key and we’ll be surfing against a lot of guys with plenty of experience.”

Meanwhile, the Lennox-Ballina Boardriders team includes former professionals Stu Kennedy and Adam Melling.