Meet Derek Rabelo

He is the surf sensation of the year. Derek Rabelo, a 19 year old blind surfer is winning the admiration of the worldwide surf community. Yes you read that right the first time: Derek is blind and just last week he was surfing one of the most respected waves in the world, the ones in Pipeline, Hawaii.

 Derek learned to surf just two years ago when his father and uncles introduced him to this way of life. His first surf coach in Guarapari (Brazil) soon realized that the kid had a great talent and told his family that he could be surfing any of the worlds best waves.

 To be able to surf, Derek only needs the help of another surfer to initially catch the wave, in the riding part he is all by himself. In a place well known for its peoples idiossincracies, Derek won the heart of Pipeline´s most hardcore surfers.

The voracious localism and occasional violence towards strangers were inexistent : Pipeline stopped to watch Derek.

AGE: 19

LOCATION: Guarapari, Brazil

 What’s the story with your sight — can you see anything? Were you born visually impaired or did something happen later? No I’m 100 percent blind. Yes, I was born blind.

 When did you learn to surf? 2 and a half years ago.

 Was that your first time surfing Pipe? How was it for you? No, I surfed Pipe at the same day they had the finals of the Volcom Pro, 01-31-12. I couldn`t catch waves because it was very crowded but it was amazing experience…6-8 feet perfect Pipe.

 The video said you wanted to pull into the tube. Has that happened yet? I`ve got a couple barrels but I didn’t make it out. Were you surprised at the gift of the surfboard? How does it ride? Yes I was, very surprised. The board is amazing, 6’2″… ( This interview is Courtesy of the adventure hournal)

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