Our next rider is from a region that hugs the southern bank of the awesome Mzimkhulu River "The great home of all rivers" in Zulu, it was founded when marble was found at the river mouth in 1867 and is named after Sir Theophilus Shepstone of the natal government of the 1880's.
Hi I am Simon Richard Dell Williamson , but you can call me Si.
I am 41 years young and I’m originally from Port Shepstone on the South Coast of South Africa, I moved around a lot as a kid due to my dad being a Civils Project Manager and once I finished High School in Pretoria I moved to Amanzimtoti in 2002, but I live in Illovo Beach (Amanzimtoti) 25 km South Of Durban Kwazulu - Natal
I got into body boarding through a friend of mine Jason Bach, he borrowed me a body board as my custom surfboard was still being made by Graham Smith as I started surfing from the age of 7 in Umtemtweni on the South Coast.
Long story short Jason offered me a body board and a pair of Churchill’s as I was waiting for my surf board to be made.
We got down to a 4 foot Shore break and got pitted on the longest wave of my life that day and I was instantly hooked. I cancelled my custom Surf board and used the board he gave me for sometime after that. ( THANK YOU JASON ) you changed my life forever!.
My favourite riders growing up? Um .... I didn’t really know the scene back then but id say there are a couple.
Jeff Hubbard, Ryan Hardy, Paul Roach, Matt Lackey, Sascha Taljaard (SA DK Legend), Michael Ostler (My Captain), Iain Campbell ( Back in CKZN days I was his team Manager and now
World Champ), Andre Botha, Billy Thiel (my First ever sponsor) and i'd say all the No Friends Videos.
My local breaks are Baggies Beach in Warner Beach, a slab known as KFC But we are fortunate on our stretch of coast we always have waves, we have 23 breaks on a 15km stretch of coast.
Some of my favourite breaks at home, a place we call KFC.(Cant disclose location) Brighton Beach (Durban), Cave Rock(Durban),
Derde Steen (Capetown), Onrus (Western Cape) North Beach (Durban)
Some of my favourite places in the world include Hawaii, El Fronton, Nazare, South Sumatra, Tand...... sheesh there are so many.
My first ever board was the classic Morey Mach 7 with black rails orange slick and yellow deck .
I run a Body boarding Club Called WBBC, Warner Beach Body boarding Club and I am fortunate to have many people I call my crew from the club but my mission partners are :
Jarryd Van Daalen
I do compete but on our National platform at Ethekwini Bodyboarding Association and SABA, South African Body boarding Association Tour and South African Championships.
I hope to select a squad one day and represent South Africa in the future as Team Manager and coach.
I am a Construction Business owner and have my own construction company, this allows me free time between clients and quoting to body board when conditions are perfect.
I would like to give a shout out to Healing Care (CBD oils from the Netherlands), Warner Beach Surf Company, Maniac Bodyboarding Wax, Dragon Energy Drink, Island Style, my wife, Mexican Dog Skateboards (MXND)
We battle in South Africa to receive any form of sponsorships, as Surfers own the current brands that are being imported. They aren’t really interested in sponsoring riders and would rather pocket the money than out lay it for support, exposure and advertising.
The last time we had a solid sponsorship was By NMD SA, which I ran for 2 years. Otherwise its the LOCAL BRANDS keeping the dreams alive MAYBE one day.
There are a few surf shops that do though.... like The Surf Garage, Drop n Boogie, The Surf HQ and Reef South Africa.
Currently I’m riding a 43.5 inch, PP Core, double stringer, Custom Maniac Bodyboard Shaped by the GURU himself Marc Rossouw. (Id welcome anyone who would be keen to sponsor me one )
In summer its a Short John, short leg REEF SOUTH AFRICA wetsuit and in winter a Reeflex 3mm long arm short leg (also looking for a wetsuit sponsor)
Currently I use Ally Swim Fins but they have lasted me 2 years but Im looking at some new ones and there is a Brand called M Star which have some epic colour variations and locally owned and would be keen to give them a go.
Reef South Africa Bicep leash and A Island Style wrist leash for Drop Knee
Id be a good investment to any sponsor because I live and breathe bodyboarding here in
South Africa, I am on our South African Bodyboarding Association (EXCO) and Chairman of
our Local bodyboarding club called Warner Beach Bodyboarding club in Warner Beach ,
Amanzimtoti on the Kwazulu Natal South Coast. I defiantly put in the effort and time in and
out the water.
There is a list of Amazing Brands like :
Rossi Board Co. , Handpicked, Bodyboard Depot , Island Style, Reef SA , M Star, Empire ,
NMD , Ally Swim Fins , Stealth , Emerald Bodyboarding Specialists etc.
No I only wear my own brand and all my CKZN or EBA shirts I acquired over the 11
years (unless its given to me from a brand or won at a comp. lol.) We Lack Bodyboarding clothing brands in South Africa, unless ordered online from abroad but in SA stuff goes missing in the post lol.
Well it’s mostly hard metal and any feel good song and songs I can relate to especially when making videos for my instagram account @thelifeofsi.
Feral Sun, Cleopatric, Sepaltura, Born of Osiris, Clown Core, Polaris, Imminence, Frank Carter and the Rattle Snakes, Royal Blood, Run the Jewels, the Skegss, Violent Soho , well anything that gets you pumped.
Being bullied by the older guys and learning some incredible life values and meeting friends that share the same passion to be a dick dragger. hahahaha.
I Really have a massive passion for South African Body boarding, this includes riders and the people involved in our sport from grass roots level to the Pros. I can be blunt and speak my mind at times and in the 21st century people sadly take offence to it lol but I don’t care. A spoon is a spoon and definitely not going to sugar coat it and its feelings.
Body boarding is a professional sport and people need to accept that and take in this to their normal day to day lives, you live and breathe it every day.
If I’m not Body boarding I’m shooting the groms and mates with my Go Pro Hero 8 and just sharing the stoke, watching and mentoring the younger generation and seeing them how they grow in our sport and the passion they are learning and one day they can share that with their kids and maybe mentor the next generation.
I would like to take this opportunity to THANK a couple people for their selfless time in and out the water, being mentors and being influential in my life ....
Christopher Clarke, Jurgens Botes, Darren Simes, Marco Justino, Nelis De Jager.
People who eat and sleep body boarding and have been influential in my body-boarding career:
Len Bradford, Rossi, Shaun Haage, Wayne Du Preez, Pat Harris, Clint Millard, Brendan Greenaway, Michael Ostler, Iain Campbell, Billy Theil, Michael Van Haysteen ,Sasha Taljaard, Mark McCarthy, Stu Bradford, Chris Green, Ryan Kavenagh , Sean Muller, JM Tostee, Shaun Hunkin, Stephanie Wilkinson and my MOM.
If I’ve forgotten to mention you I am sorry! ....
Thank you LIDLIFE you rock!