Besides being global ambassadors for the brand, our athletes play a vital role at Cabianca Surfboards. It is their constant feedback from the water that allows us to continue to improve and innovate in the shaping room.
Coming from the same surf-rich town of Maresias, Johnny and Gabriel started working together in 2009… and they’ve been making surfboards (and surfing history) together ever since. As Gabriel evolved into the 3 times world champion he is today, Johnny Cabianca is proud to have played a part in that evolution.
Half Brazilian, half French, raised on Biarriz beachbreaks and Costa Rican point breaks… Tiago is a truly global surfer, and a huge talent. We like to think he gets his competitive fire from his Brazilian mother – Tiago’s what Johnny calls a ‘Finish Horse’ – meaning he makes a lot of finals. As his recent successes on the WQS have shown, it’s all coming together perfectly for this young athlete, and, with a style that combines power turns with progressive moves, we think Tiago’s got what it takes to become a champion.
2011, MESSANGE AND TAHITI
At only twelve years old, Tya has already lived a surfing life that most of us would be happy to retire on. The daughter of two passionate surfers who call Hossegor and Tahiti home, since the age of two this talented young girl has been travelling the world in search of the perfect wave – and it shows. From freesurfing Tahitian barrels to competing in sloppy beach breaks, Tya does it all with joy, determination and versatility. She’s growing into an exceptional surfing talent with an elegant, natural style, and we can’t wait to see where she will be in another ten years.
We’re not sure what we like most about Ruben: that he’s a super positive and likeable local guy who represents the very best Basque spirit, or that he’s one of those rare beasts who absolutely kills it in all conditions. From converting waist-high chop into contest wins, to dropping into Zumaia’s terrifying Playa Gris on giant days – this kid does it all, and we’re proud to see him doing it on Cabianca boards.
Don’t be fooled by the shy, gentle smile: behind it lies the mental toughness of a true competitor. Whether he’s surfing the cold water of his home breaks in Northern Spain, or the perfect freshwater walls of his secret Basque training facility The Wavegarden… this kid is dangerous.
Bitor’s a young Basque surfer with a super positive attitude and all the dedication you need to make it to the top. Out of the water, he’s the nicest guy: in the water he’s relentless. So is his progression: in 2018 Bitor was the Basque champion; in 2019 he won the national (Spanish) Junior Tour, and in 2022 he became European Junior Champion + Spanish Champion. Go, Bitor!
Guilherme (‘Gui’) is a young Brazilian with huge potential who’s been impressing us for years, so we’re very proud to officially welcome him onto the Cabianca team. Still in his early teens, Gui stands out for his ability to pull off incredibly progressive moves in the most average conditions, and we’re stoked to see him getting the recognition he deserves, in the shape of two Rip Curl Grom Search titles. The future is bright for this happy ripper from Ubatuba!
Murillo, a rising surfing talent from São Paulo, has found his home in Maresias, the renowned surf spot synonymous with Gabriel Medina. A modern and highly progressive surfer, Murillo is just as much at home in the barrel as in the air – and when it’s pumping in Maresias, you’ll probably find him getting both on the same wave.
At 15 years old, Inigo Madina, from Hendaye in the Basque Country, is loving his surfing life. Last year, at the 2022 World Championships held in El Salvador, he claimed the vice-world champion in the under-16 category, as well as scoring his first (but definitely not last) trip to Teahupoo. From screaming Tahitian barrels to wave pool aerials, Inigo loves it all, and we can’t wait to see where his passion for surfing takes him next.
INLAND | REGIONAL TEAM SURFERS
1985, SWITZERLAND AND COSTA RICA
Next time someone tells you static wave surfing isn’t real surfing – tell them to say that to Durby Castillo. Durby grew up ripping Pavones, the legendary Costa Rican left hander. But when he emigrated to land-locked Sursee, Switzerland, he had no way to know his surf career was just getting started. The new chapter began when Durby discovered Zürich’s CityPool static wave. Pretty soon, Durby was hooked: “I started surfing because I always felt a connection with the ocean. But, I ended up getting passionately addicted to static waves. Because you don’t have to focus on what the wave is doing, you can put all your energy into the tricks and maneuvers.”
Living in a landlocked country and raising a child: two solid obstacles to having a fulfilling surf career, right? Wrong. Swiss team rider Livia Fürst is somehow doing it all – being a mum, living a busy life in Schönenwerd, Switzerland, and totally ripping at Oana, her local wavepool. For us, Livia is constant reminder that life’s obstacles don’t block the path – they are the path.
Introducing Sun Malka, a teen surfing prodigy hailing from the vibrant shores of Ashkelon, Israel. Born into a lineage of surf legends (his parent is a former Israeli champion), Shlomo practically grew up on the waves right outside his home, and he’s ridden Cabianca boards every step of the way. Combining legit heritage with a stack of talent, Sun has quickly risen through the ranks, dominating the Israeli tour like a seasoned campaigner in both youth and adult divisions.
Moroccan surfer girl Ranya Squalli is a force to be reckoned with. Not only has she claimed the Moroccan junior championship twice, but she continues to inspire us all. Her love affair with surfing began at a mere 4 years old, and ever since, she has been riding waves like a true champion. Ranya serves as a guiding light for young Moroccan girls, urging them to pursue their dreams relentlessly. By forging her own path and dominating the Moroccan surfing scene, she exemplifies the epitome of determination. Her unwavering spirit propels her towards greatness, as she aspires to become one of the greatest surfers ever.
2004, REPUBLIC OF KOREA
Jaeung is an up-and coming Korean surfer from Jeju island, South Korea’s largest island. Despite still being in his teens, Jaeung’s already taking the scene by storm, with junior titles under his belt and a spot on the national team. What’s his secret? Well, this goofyfooter’s got a powerful physique, and when it comes to the art of throwing massive amounts of spray, Jaeung’s a national treasure.
1998, REPUBLIC OF KOREA
South Korea may not be the most well-known surfing destination, but it’s got a thriving scene, some amazing waves, and no shortage of talented home-grown surfers. At the top of this talent pool is Im Suhyun – a five-time national champion with a smooth, flowing style and a relentless work ethic. With South Korea set to host the ISA Games in 2024, he is training hard and looking forward to helping the Korean national team shine in the international spotlight.
1995, REPUBLIC OF KOREA
Rounding off our South Korean team in style, we’ve got Mark Kim, a true all-rounder who’s as comfortable throwing buckets on a performance shortboard as he is hanging ten on a classic longboard. There’s no denying that Mark’s a top Korean surfer, as his 2022 Grand Slam title testifies. But for us, while trophies and titles are great, it’s how much fun you’re having that matters. As far as we can tell, Mark Kim is having as much fun as anyone, and we’re just happy to have him spreading the love on Cabianca boards.
2007, REPUBLIC OF KOREA
Gyeom is another hot talent coming out of Jeju island, South Korea’s richest surf resource. With a surfer dad to coach him and his two siblings (or is that ‘seablings’?), Gyeom’s life pretty much revolves around surfing – and it shows. With a positive attitude and impressive ability to launch big airs out of the smallest waves, we’re stoked to have Gyeom representing Cabianca in Asia!
Moroccan freesurfer Hakim is one of those guys that oozes style, whatever he does, wherever he goes. When it’s pumping you’ll find him at his his local spots: charging powerful rights in Sidi Kaouki or boosting airs in Essaouira. When it’s flat, he’ll be doing much the same on skateboards: stylish carves on a cruiser or crisp ollies on his street board. Soulful or progressive, waves or wheels – Hakim’s got it all.