Smith, Col (Sydney)

Dynamic Australian goofyfoot surfer from Narrabeen, New South Wales; winner of the 1977 Australian National Titles, and progenitor in the late '60s and early '70s, along with fellow Aussie Wayne Lynch, of high-performance backside surfing. "I just started going up and down the wave instead of along it," he later said with a shrug.

Smith came on the scene like a Viking, with long white-blond hair and a jutting goatee—Surfing magazine called him "a 1972 version of Errol Flynn"—and locally was ...