SEVERE WX : Freeze Watch View Alerts

World champion surfer Mick Fanning announces retirement

Mick Fanning's career in surfing has been a wild ride.A three-time world champion, winner of 22 surfing events...

Posted: Feb 28, 2018 2:36 PM
Updated: Feb 28, 2018 2:36 PM

Mick Fanning's career in surfing has been a wild ride.

A three-time world champion, winner of 22 surfing events, he's overcome career-threatening injuries and profound grief. He's even punched a shark.

Fanning will surf competitively for the last time at the Rip Curl Pro

"It's been a rollercoaster," says Fanning

But the 36-year-old dubbed "White Lightning" for his speed on the board is calling it a day, admitting in an Instagram post on Wednesday that he had lost the "motivation and dedication to compete."

"I feel like I've just lost the drive to compete day-in day-out now," said Fanning, who will surf competitively for the last time at the Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach, which starts on March 29.

"I'm just not enjoying it as much as I was in the past. I still love surfing, and I'm still super excited by it, but I feel that's there's other paths for me to take at this stage in my life."

In 2015, the wave Fanning caught at Jeffrey's Bay became one of his career defining moments as he famously fought off a shark -- though miraculously he was unharmed.

The shark did little damage to Fanning though it did bite through his leg rope and caused some damage to his surfboard.

"I had this feeling that something was behind [me], and all of a sudden I felt like I started getting pulled underwater. And then the thing came up and I was on my board and it was right there," he said.

"I had this thought, 'What if it comes around for another go at me? Before I knew it, the boat was there... I can't believe it, I was tripping out. I'm totally tripping out."

It was his competitor Julian Wilson's account of the incident which revealed Fanning's close call with death.

"I saw him get knocked off his board, I came over the wave and his board was over here and he was swimming that way, and I thought it was going to grab him and take him under."

'Peaks and valleys'

As colorful as Fanning's career may have been its not always been plain sailing as he experienced increased public scrutiny when he lost his two brothers and also the break up of his marriage in 2015.

Fanning also suffered a complete hamstring tear in 2004 setting his career back with surgery and intense rehab.

"It's been a rollercoaster for sure, you have your peaks and valleys, but when I look back on my time on tour it's all amazing memories," he said.

"From building myself up to compete, to heat wins and event wins, celebrating with friends and just seeing places I never thought I'd even get to."

Huntsville
Few Clouds
67° wxIcon
Hi: 68° Lo: 52°
Feels Like: 67°
Florence
Clear
70° wxIcon
Hi: 71° Lo: 50°
Feels Like: 70°
Fayetteville
Clear
66° wxIcon
Hi: 67° Lo: 52°
Feels Like: 66°
Decatur
Clear
68° wxIcon
Hi: 68° Lo: 51°
Feels Like: 68°
Scottsboro
Clear
66° wxIcon
Hi: 66° Lo: 52°
Feels Like: 66°
WAAY Radar
WAAY WAAY-TV Cam
WAAY Temperatures

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 162720

Reported Deaths: 2735
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Jefferson24088384
Mobile17166319
Tuscaloosa10641142
Montgomery10576205
Madison961998
Shelby766067
Baldwin688871
Lee666965
Calhoun480663
Marshall450051
Etowah444553
Morgan442835
Houston426535
DeKalb357929
Elmore329258
St. Clair313843
Limestone300333
Walker290293
Talladega277737
Cullman271925
Lauderdale243743
Jackson228218
Autauga214131
Colbert212532
Franklin210732
Blount203925
Russell19993
Chilton192632
Dallas189427
Dale186252
Coffee185111
Covington178729
Escambia176031
Clarke139117
Tallapoosa138587
Chambers138147
Pike137014
Marion111831
Barbour10569
Marengo105322
Butler102041
Geneva9597
Winston95313
Pickens90018
Lawrence89933
Bibb86615
Randolph85316
Hale78330
Cherokee76915
Clay76712
Washington75912
Henry7366
Lowndes72328
Monroe66310
Bullock65117
Crenshaw61630
Fayette60413
Perry6026
Cleburne5819
Conecuh57313
Wilcox57212
Macon55020
Lamar5255
Sumter48721
Choctaw39512
Greene34616
Coosa2193
Out of AL00
Unassigned00

Tennessee Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 259488

Reported Deaths: 3341
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Shelby37618571
Davidson32908350
Knox1330196
Rutherford12485116
Hamilton12251111
Williamson749657
Sumner6439117
Wilson495064
Putnam463859
Montgomery442861
Out of TN430436
Sullivan410052
Madison392780
Washington387758
Bradley372923
Maury363039
Blount355441
Sevier353423
Robertson270243
Hamblen256950
Tipton250123
Dyer236338
Unassigned23047
Gibson223449
Coffee201428
Hardeman193933
Greene192755
Obion186527
Anderson184816
Bedford180522
Trousdale17949
Dickson179119
Fayette177427
Lawrence173220
McMinn172939
Carter172136
Cumberland169827
Loudon169713
Wayne16237
Jefferson162224
Weakley161926
Monroe153629
Warren152011
Lauderdale150717
Roane14478
Hardin144423
Henderson144326
Macon138425
Franklin135124
Haywood133428
Hawkins128629
Overton126825
White126615
Johnson12118
Marshall120512
Carroll118127
Cocke116716
McNairy116330
Rhea115121
Cheatham112012
Campbell111613
Bledsoe10404
Smith104014
Giles102238
Lake9924
Lincoln9514
Fentress94812
Crockett91722
Henry84512
Hickman84115
Marion82613
DeKalb79018
Chester74416
Decatur68211
Grainger6414
Grundy60013
Union5604
Claiborne5498
Polk53813
Unicoi4865
Jackson4778
Humphreys4694
Lewis4586
Morgan4587
Benton44110
Cannon4362
Houston43117
Clay42216
Scott4165
Sequatchie3702
Stewart35613
Perry3508
Meigs3396
Pickett2879
Moore2862
Van Buren2132
Hancock1273

Community Events