Kelly Slater announces retirement after Paris Olympics

Nautical Channel
01 Mar 2023
NEWS | Surf

Kelly Slater, for many the greatest professional surfer of all time, has announced at the presentation of the 2nd season of Make or Break (Apple TV+), that he would retire after playing the Paris Olympics in 2024.

For many years there have been rumors about his possible retirement, but the American is still competing at the age of 50.  

This season he has already participated in the first two WSL championships, Billabong Pro Pipeline and Hurley Pro Sunset Beach, being currently in 16th position in the ranking. Kelly Slater has now confirmed that he has a retirement date, and that there is no turning back.

He wants to participate and win, why not, the Olympic Games in Paris, but for that the USA will have to qualify in September of this year, which hopefully he will achieve and there will not be any problem so he can fulfill his dream and another record, being the oldest American athlete to compete in the Olympic Games.

Already in 2020 he narrowly missed out on the USA team, so, for next year 2024 Kelly Slater wants to be one of the 2 surfers from the United States that would participate in the Paris Games, according to the Championship Tour CT rankings. At the moment, John Florence and Griffin Colapinto occupy those two positions. Another option to go to the Olympics by invitation from his country would be to win the 2024 World Surfing Games.

But... Who is Kelly Slater?

There will be few who will not know this legend. Kelly Slater is a professional surfer born in Florida, USA, in 1972. He is considered one of the best, if not the best surfer in history and has won 11 times the title of world champion. In addition to that, he has an enviable track record.

How many world surfing titles has he won?

Kelly Slater has won 11 World Surf League (WSL) titles:

  • 1992 
  • 1994 
  • 1995 
  • 1996 
  • 1997 
  • 1998 
  • 2005 
  • 2006 
  • 2008 
  • 2010 
  • 2011 

In addition, he has obtained the following results: 

  • 11 world titles 
  • 55 WCT surfing victories 
  • 3 Vans Triple Crown of Surfing (extreme surfing events) 
  • 8 Pipe Masters

With this enviable track record, the following achievements and records stand out: 

  • Being the youngest (at 20 years old) and oldest (39 years old) surfer to be world champion. 
  • Winning 5 consecutive world titles (1994-1998). 
  • Most WSL wins in history. 
  • Most Pipe Masters wins (8) 
  • Most dominant surfer in 2 different centuries (20th and 21st century)

It is important to note that Kelly Slater has also been runner-up in the world championship on several occasions, which demonstrates his consistent dominance in the sport of surfing throughout his career.

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