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Portugal Bodyboarding… The Inside Track from Antonio ‘Toze’ Fonseca of Vert Magazine

262398_374762969307351_975404217_n After working for ThreeSixty Magazine for over a decade I got friendly with most of the international bodyboard magazine editors. Toze of Vert Magazine is definitely the cream of the crop though. Super friendly, super passionate and an incredible knowledge about all things bodyboarding. With his specialist subject being Portuguese bodyboarding. He’s been in Portugal since the beginning of popular bodyboarding. I met up with him last September while I was down in Portugal planning our 2014 coaching trip. This is what he had to say about the place. Sounds pretty good huh!? 1. Please introduce yourself, tell us your age, years bodyboarding, your local spots and preferred riding style? Man, I'm 43 now and I've been involved with Bodyboarding since 1985.  I'm living in Santa Cruz (between Ericeira and Peniche) for 13 years now so I love to surf it here, especially during Summer time 'cause it's pretty consistent. Santa Cruz always has a wave breaking somewhere. In Winter I just follow the swell, go to Ericeira, Peniche or even Carcavelos near Lisbon. I prone and dk, it depends on the conditions, but I would say most of the time I prone. ;) [caption id="attachment_2869" align="alignnone" width="800"]Toze knows how to lay serious rail. Toze knows how to lay serious rail.[/caption] santa_cruz_toze3 2. What is your background in Portuguese bodyboarding? First I started competing and stuff, but then, around 1991, I co-founded the first Portuguese bodyboarding magazine with other two friends (called Bodyboard Portugal). Three years later and until today I've been working in Vert Magazine. As you notice I'm pretty deeply involved in the Bodyboarding scene. ;) 1544362_10202351037771310_684771887_n 3. Portugal has spawned some of Europe's best ever riders, who are they and why is this? We have great spots and waves around here, so much diversity. I think that's the key. You can be surfing a beach break in the early hours of the day and a reef break in Ericeira in the afternoon. That will give you the full package. There's a lot of good riders, but I enjoy to watch Pitaça, Hugo Pinheiro, Bernardo Jerónimo, Porkito, Tó Cardoso, Manuel Centeno, Bodecas, Ricardo Faustino, Tiago Tavares, this new guy called Steph Kokorelis... and many others! 4. Portugal seems to have an incredible variety of waves can you discuss the best 5 waves in your opinion? Some of the spots I can't even mention, sorry, but they're secret spots. All I can say is they stay between Ericeira and Peniche. I just love Santa Cruz when the sandbars are good. Then a little up North, in Peniche, I would say Supertubos is a world class wave. I also enjoy Molhe Leste which is a funny wedge near a pier, also in Peniche. You can have a lot of fun and good times in there! In the Ericeira area the lefts of Pedra Branca (right in front of the camping) and Crazy Left are also a must. Down South, around Lisbon, Carcavelos is awesome at the right tide and swell. Passing the Tagus bridge, in Costa de Caparica, the place where I lived before coming to Santa Cruz, there is an incredible wedge called Cova do Vapor. It's the bodyboarders playground. Then, in Sagres, Algarve, look out for this spot: Beliche. There is something for everyone here. [caption id="attachment_2855" align="alignnone" width="800"]_MG_1618-fixed Photo: Sharpy[/caption] 5. Is the Portuguese bodyboarding scene still developing well? Oh yeah, still developing. There's a young crew of kids hungry to beat everyone. There's not so many bodyboarders in the water as it use to be and I guess the financial crisis is making damages everywhere. But Bodyboarding will never stop. Good sponsors are a hard thing to find these days and the events don't have the stellar prizes as a few years ago, but the scene’s still there. 6. What's your opinion about the month of September for bodyboarding in Portugal? That's in fact a good month 'cause it's when Summer ends and the first swells start to hit the coast. So, most of the time, it’s that time of the year when it will never go flat, but it’s still warm and there’s lot’s of sunshine. [caption id="attachment_2869" align="alignnone" width="800"] Toze enjoying the best of Portugal last September. Let's hope for similar conditions for our bodyboard-holiday this september!
Toze enjoying the best of Portugal last September. Let's hope for similar conditions for our bodyboard-holiday this september![/caption] 7. The Sintra area of Portugal has been the host of the world tour bodyboard event for a long time, other than the event, what is so good about the region? Man, the beaches around Sintra are awesome. Incredible beach breaks and a good alternative for the Summer days. There's a lot of bodyboarders in the area so you'll feel like you're at home or welcome. Then you have good food, the culture (castle and stuff to visit in Sintra) and the beach parties. [caption id="attachment_2856" align="alignnone" width="800"]_MG_9486-fixed Photo: Sharpy[/caption] 8. What else is there to see and do on the coast other than bodyboarding? You always find something to do here. Visit new places, enjoying the fresh fish or just cruising enjoying the view. Come and get it!
Here's a clip that Toze put together that sums up the huge variety of Portuguese bodyboarding pretty well!
If you fancy a bodyboard coaching holiday to Portugal this September click here for further information.
  • February 14, 2014
  • 5000
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