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article imageJustin Quintal talks Vans Duct Tape Invitationals, future plans Special

By Markos Papadatos     Jul 30, 2019 in Sports
Longboarder Justin Quintal chatted with Digital Journal about his experience winning the Vans Duct Tape Invitationals, and his plans for the future. He also spoke about his use of technology as an athlete.
Quintal won four consecutive Vans Duct Tape Invitationals and a total of eight. "It felt amazing. Surreal, and unbelievable at times even to myself. It definitely adds a little pressure though. For a longboarder, the Duct Tape is the most prestigious event you could be a part of. It has set the standard for Longboard competition," he said.
"If you are a longboarder and win one of these events it’s one of the best feelings in the world, and can lead to a lot of opportunities. All that being said the Duct Tape is a whole experience in and of itself. It is much more than just a surf competition. I would really like to thank Joel Tudor, Nolan Hall, Scott Sisamis, and everyone at Vans that make these events possible and for all the good times over the years," he elaborated.
On his future plans, he said, "This year the WSL is revamping their Longboard tour, focused more on traditional longboard surfing, similar to the Duct Tape Invitational. There has been a lot of controversy over their Longboard tour in the past, but Devon Howard (who has also been a part of the Duct Tape) was recently hired as the new commissioner and has so far done a good job of improving the tour."
He continued, "I won the first event in Noosa Australia earlier this year, which means I am currently ranked No. 1 on the world tour. So for the near future, I am focused on trying to win my first world title. Surfers will also qualify for the Olympics through the WSL. There has been controversy there too whether surfing ought to be in the Olympics or not."
"Either way, it is going to be a part of the Olympics in 2020, although it doesn’t look like longboarding will be a part of that one, if it ever is I would like to be first in line to represent my country," he added.
Quintal shared that outside of competition his favorite things include traveling, chasing storms, swells, and getting the best waves he can. "I would like to do more of that and document it, although I already travel a lot. Riding for Vans has been amazing as well and they really get behind the visions of their riders, I look forward to continuing to work closely with them in the future," he said.
He actually ran his first Invitational contest this past fall (The Loggerhead Invitational), and he is planning on running the second annual on September 22.
"It focuses mostly on the upcoming talent along the East Coast and we host 32 of the best male, and 16 of the best female longboards on the East Cost. Vans has been a major supporter of these events. I also started my own business called Black Rose MFG. about four years ago. We build custom surfboards, I design them, and Ricky Carroll shapes them. So I plan on continuing to grow my brand as well," he said.
On his daily motivations, he said, "I am motivated each day by my girlfriend, my dog, my friends, and family. The natural beauty of where I live and the places I visit. Also the legends of the past, my peers, and the younger generation coming up. There is so much talent out there right now, it's motivating and inspiring."
Digital transformation of surfing
Regarding his use of technology in his daily routine as an athlete, Quintal said, "I use it in every way, which is a little dark, but kind of amazing. It helps consolidate everything into one place, my phone is a one-stop-shop. The downside is everyone expects you to be available all the time, and there are very little boundaries."
"I use my phone to check waves all over the world, track storms, book flights, communicate with others (surfers, photographers, sponsors), schedule training sessions, write emails and do interviews," he said.
On the impact of technology on the sport of surfing, he said, "When I was younger, surf culture was much less commercialized. You really had to earn respect, and give respect. I think technology has introduced surfing to a much broader audience and made it much more accessible. This is a great thing, and creates more of a market for surfing, and more opportunities."
"I think surfing can be a very therapeutic and positive outlet for people, and I'm happy for them to find that. One of the amazing parts about surfing is getting away from everything though, creating space and interacting with nature. Many breaks are getting so crowded now that it is getting harder to find that," he said.
For young and aspiring surfers, he encouraged them to "be humble, but confident."
He defined the word success as follows: "Life's short, and you don't get to take anything with you when you go. I think success is more about good experiences, and just setting yourself up to be surrounded by the things that make you happy."
"I've spent some of the money I've made through contests and the Duct Tapes traveling and on equipment, maybe a little partying, but I've also saved a lot of it and this past year bought a little house in my hometown," he said.
"It’s not a mansion but I have everything I need. I've got my fishing poles, my surfboards, a yard for my dog, a spare room for when my friends visit, the Intracoastal Waterway a block away and the beach a short bike ride away. I drive an old used Subaru, but it gets me where I need to go," he elaborated.
Quintal concluded, "I live just down the street from my parents and brother and I'm there for them and they are there for me. I'm content, I'm happy, what more could a person want?"
For his fans and supporters, he extended his gratitude to them.
To learn more about longboarder Justin Quintal, follow him on Instagram.
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