Article

Freddy P’s Comments.

| posted on April 06, 2010

“I think they (the beach commentators) have got his (Owen Wright’s) testicles so far up their mouths, this is bullsh-t.” –Fred Patacchia.

While it may not have been the most eloquent phrase ever uttered, it was certainly a refreshing dose of honesty during a normally stale post-heat interview. And it landed Fred Patacchia in the center of a minor controversy.

The reason for Patacchia’s vitriol stemmed from what he perceived to be an excessive amount of beach commentary air time devoted to Owen Wright’s abilities. Patacchia felt the beach commentators (employed by Rip Curl, Owen’s main sponsor) would influence the judges and place Patacchia and fellow competitor, Drew Courtney, at a disadvantage. It’s a recurring concern among the top 45 that only rears its head every once in a while.

Numerous reports (Surfermag.com, Grindtv.com, Surfingmagazine.com) have claimed that Pattacchia was fined for his outburst, with some going as far putting a $1,000 amount to it. But the ASP would not confirm that Patacchia was fined, but had this to say:

“ASP encourages our surfers to express their opinions at all times and in a matter fitting of their status as professionals. Regarding Fred’s post-heat interview in Round 1 of the Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach presented by Snickers, we have no problem with him expressing his opinion on the beach commentary, but the manner in which he chose to do it was unfortunate. We do not report on the disciplinary specifics between ASP management and the surfers, but the situation has been resolved and we wish Fred the best of luck in the remainder of the event.”

While post heat interviews on the World Tour are traditionally trite and somewhat pointless, they do provide an occasional gem. This one was worth the wait:

Freddy P talks about his comments:

  • greg browning

    that was the greatest comment ever made by a surfer in a post interview. all he did was say it like it was. yeah freddy

  • http://www.yankaus.com mik

    Freddy P is one of the best surfers on tour, and for sure, he HAS been underscored at times. Surf contest judging is subjective, it IS biased at times. So when it happens one too many times, the anger builds up… And it will come out… And I am glad it does. Fred: Thanks dude, that was a needed event, I am glad you had the balls to say it, and I hope it is listened to, because fairness is one of the best qualities anyone can live by. Including the WTC.

  • whamo

    Freddy P. didn’t do himself any favors with this outburst.

  • Evan Sellers

    Props to Freddy. Not just cause he stood up for himself, but I fully agree with him.

  • surf4peace

    Agreed Freddy. Your points were spot on. Perhaps the choice of words post heat could have been better, however, the announcers in the booth have an obligation to be professional, most especially at this level of competition. This is one of the reasons why I don’t watch as much competitive surfing as I once did. Seeing more than my fair share of overscored and underscored waves and sponsorship decisions based purely on “aesthetics” which essentially amount to an insult to the skill level of some of the best surfers in the world. At any rate, hope you’re the next Hawaiian to bring the championship home to Hawaii. Peace.

  • Paul Anderson

    The best way to get people to act professionally is to model professionalism yourself. Freddie could have told his post heat interviewer he was going to lodge an official complaint about the announcers. He didn’t need to model the language he did. Best to control what you say when you want to control what others are saying. He could still apologise for the language as a professional surfer.

  • cp

    Fred rips and I agree. Marketing attempts to chose the next starts in the sport. Also it was a gem of a comment!

  • BillytheKid

    I presonally do not like Freddy, but what he said was totally needed. I back him on that! And he wasn’t completely negative he could have just said FFF Rip Curl, but he explained himself!

  • Greg

    and nobody hyped him during the quick comp? Nothing better than a hypocrite.

  • WS

    Nobody has ever hyped Freddy. I watched him work his way through to the finals of the U.S Open years ago and few, if anyone commented on that at the time. Not my favorite surfer to watch but you have to love his honesty. Glad you spoke up Freddy.

  • Jacob

    Its common knowledge that freddy rips. Never was a huge fan, but I could always appreciate his surfing and he seemed like a pretty straight shooter.

    Big supporter after this. Not the comment itself, but how he explained it. Well spoken, cool guy. Watching live events is SO BORING because there is never any critiscm towards anyone it seems (which is needed sometimes imo) and its basically just an ongoing sugar coated add.

    He was probably hyped at the Quik comp yes, but he can’t really complain about it considering Quiksilver puts food on his table so to speak. We need more of this in surfing, too many bros not enough outspoken guys…

    “GOOD ON YA” Freddy!!

  • http://N/A Mick O’ Brien

    Way to go Freddy, Proud of you son for standing up for the truth when others don’t have the balls 2.
    YOUR DA MAN BRA.
    Mahalo’s,Aloha & Ahui’ Ho’ Bro
    Mick O Mate

  • Justin Langlais

    Hey Freddy……way to keep em’ in check!

  • daniel

    nice one, fred! they totally deserved it! 33% of the commentary of the heat should go to you, numbers-wise. owen is no world champ yet. ask jordy and dane about their 1st year on tour. these build up and build up and eventually someone has to say something. paul anderson, lame playing the professional card, when the announcers themselves couldn’t. Hypocrite!!

  • Go Freddy P

    Yep, Freddy had to say it, none of the chicken-shit surf rags will EVER have the balls to call out the the faggotry in surfing now.

  • Steve

    But that’s the whole point, Jacob. RipCurl puts food on Owen’s table and they pump him at their comp. Quick did the exact same thing a few weeks ago with Fred at Snapper. Fred’s talking out of his @ss here.

  • fake it til you make it

    That was one of the most refreshing rants I’ve heard in a while. Fred is spot on…Owen rips, but Drew’s re qualifying was a bigger feat than anything Owen has done. Owen is the future, but I’ve heard too much hype for guys at comps, and it gets annoying. This is especially true when its from the commentators employed by said surfers main sponsor, and highly subjective judging may be influenced. Careers are at stake here.

  • thor

    please! when the circus is in hawaii they get their asses kissed far more than anyone! So grow up freddy p!

  • Paul Anderson

    ‘Paul anderson, lame playing the professional card, when the announcers themselves couldn’t. Hypocrite!!’
    The point about being professional is that someone has to start
    In the seventies the flower power, anything goes generation didn’t organize much at all. ‘Breaking Down the Doors’ is about someone ( a few ) deciding to act professionally enough to get a financially supported circuit off the ground. As a result we get to watch professional surfing on a professional live broadcast. Freddy has to pay £1000 fine and he gets the chance to win more $ in the future.

  • JP

    Fred comments were not about himself, they were about the RC announcers not being professional. Fred expressed his feeling about Drew’s accomplishments being overshadowed by Owen and how Drew was not even being mentioned.
    Fred spoke up because he is intelligent and professional enough to do so. If he chose kind soft words do you think it would have received the play that it did???? It was all for a reason, a very legit reason.
    Nice work Freddy.

  • Paul Anderson

    Owen Wrights’ sisters and mother are likely to have heard his comments. What he did say isn’t impressive. It’s disrespectful of Owen and his family. Being in control on a wave is impressive – grace under pressure. Being in control of strong feelings is going to get more done. Freddy could have announced he was going to make an official complaint, not got fined and not been offensive to people who had nothing to do with the heat commentary. He could still apologise for the language and lead a crusade for unbiased public commentary. He’s got a good case.

  • Steve

    BTW, Fred’s not intelligent. He’s just apparently smarter than some of the the other guys. But compared to AI and a few of the others, my left shoe looks smart as well.

  • ez

    it doesn’t matter in the end. Owen IS the future and Freddy P will be another footnote in the annals of ASP history. i hardly think the wright clan is shaken in the least bit.

  • Derk

    Freddy P is just another example of an overrated, overpaid, and over opinionated Hawaiian surf Bro. Hawaii as a whole is a haven for losers like him. They speak about respect and loyalty but show none of it any where that they travel. Im over him and the rest of the hawaii contingent’s strangle hold on the industry. I vote we the USA turns its back on those lame islands, and sends Freddy P and his stink bug style to Brazil where he belongs.

  • Marcelo

    Freddy rocks, come on old school!

  • Derk Sucks

    Derk, don’t go to Hawaii. You’re the type of kook who’ll get beat up there. You’d probably get beat at your local break too. A kook is a kook where ever you go, and it’s mostly kooks who complain about getting waves.

  • Andrzej Kowalski

    Aussie Sports Commentators are the most biased in the world. In Australia you never hear about the other team/player whatever, it’s only about themselves. Surfing reporting is totally sponsor dependant, it’s at it’s worst in Australia, but Hawaii comes in as a close second. This is a fact that every visiting professional sportsman and sportswoman has to deal with when coming to the these shores. But it’s part of the challenge. So fire up internally and use it as a motivation tool. It’s almost as bad in Hawaii. If I was Freddy, I would be as mad as a snake too, but that is still not the way to behave. Saying I would officially like make a protest against the commentating team would have been a better option. I do agree Owen Wright will be a world Champ, and it’s only a matter of time. It might be a brutal thing to say, but Freddy will probably never be world champ. I hope he proves me wrong. My advice is; “Go Fred!! One day you will sit on couch and and go, you know what I never gave an inch. I never gave up!” Still that day has not come yet. It’s years away, so keep fighting Fred. Keep fighting just like you did in that heat. You were the underdog and you won. It’s people like you that make this sport interesting.

  • Bodhi

    Right on Freddy!

  • max

    Owen won’t be champ. Freddy is smart (funny also) and did plan this. He made it shocking to get noticed!
    Freddy is class and gets an exemption, but in Hawaii the clan are down right hostile @ssholes and need to clean up their act! Derk Sucks is a perfect example!