Surfer Bill Laity earned himself a spot in the record books last weekend by setting a new endurance mark for the longest continuous surfing record. Laity, who lives in San Clemente, California, set the record off Huntington Beach, where he rode the waves for a very impressive 26-hours straight.
To make his historic ride Laity had to apply to the Guinness Book of World Records and obtain permits that would allow for night surfing. He started planning his attempt back in September after previous record holder Thomas Cannon managed to surf for 24-hours in a row back in August.
Before he even hit the water last Saturday Laity could tell he was going to be in for a challenge. Rain started to fall early that morning, and the National Weather Service issued a winter storm warning. That led to cold conditions while out on the waves and forced him to don a different wetsuit on his first break.
The Guinness Book allows for a five minute breather for every hour surfed, and Laity went for 10 hours straight before heading into shore for the first time. During that break he put on a warmer suit, which set him up for another 12-hour stint on his board, which measured just five foot, seven inches in length. During his second break Laity managed to eat some lunch, then drag his weary body back out onto the water for four more hours of surfing.
Previous to this attempt, the longest that the 37-year old Laity had surfed was five-hours straight while visiting Hawaii.
[Photo credit: Brent Hilleman via The Swell Blog]