Local surfer, Micha Cantor, arrives home after international world surfing competition in Portugal
SURFSIDE BEACH, SC (WMBF) – At only fifteen years old, Micha has competed in a handful of surfing competitions, with many being international. Micha is a Junior Pro surfer for Team USA. Micha says surfing is something he has been doing since he was only five years old.
"I started surfing when I think I was five maybe, I really don't remember it was such a long time ago."
Micha says, " He started surfing because his dad did it, so he pushed him in as soon as he could walk."
At first, Micha and his dad Stoney Cantor started surfing together. Stoney says, "When he saw the love of surfing from Micha, and watched him catch his first wave, he realized right then that his is what he would do." He adds, "Because you can just tell if they have it or not, and Micha had it." After seeing the potential Micha had, Stoney says he quickly turned into Micha's photographer, instead of his surfing partner. Although, he said, he and Micha still enjoy a surf together every once in a while.
With surfing consuming so much of Micha's time, he and Micha's mom, Tonya Moore, decided to homeschool their son, Stoney said. They say this gives him time to focus on his passion while attending school at the same time.
Micha said, "Competing in Portugal was pretty cool because he had never gotten to compete for the USA team before, so it was cool to go out there." He says, "Team USA won the competition the year before, but they got fifth place this year, so it wasn't that bad." He noted that "it was everyone's first year and they were all rookies."
"It takes a lot to qualify for the International World's Surfing competition, starting with participating in this organization called, "Prime," and you qualify for USA championships through that program, and then go surf at USA championships and then from there, they pick six surfers for each age divison and they picked me this last year," Micha says.
Stoney Cantor said, "It feels great to watch Micha compete, but it's also really nerve-racking if its a close heat, however, it's all worth it when you see the expression on their face when they do really well. As a parent, there's nothing more exciting than to see your kid so happy and accomplishing the goals they have always strived out to accomplish."
As it is hurricane season, and Myrtle Beach recently experienced Category one, Hurricane Matthew, Micha told me he is very cautious of the winds when it comes to surfing close to the time of a hurricane arriving. He said he does not go out if it's extremely windy or if the waters seem unsafe. Micha said, "The best time to surf is actually after a hurricane storms through because the ocean waters are much cleaner and calmer then."
Micha says, "He is continuing to progress and always getting better than he was before, so if he can surf for a living when he gets older, then that is exactly what he wants to do." As for his long term goals, he hopes to make the World Tour, WQS and says if not, he hopes to pursue filming with free surfing for movies and promote his self in that way."
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