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June Frother – John Botella

By Christie Bennett on June 12, 2012 in People

Photo: Brad Malyon

This month’s Frother is one of the few old blokes who still regularly gets out in the water down at Bronte…

Name: John Botella

Age: A reluctant 49

Grew up in: Beautiful Bronte

Local break: Bronte, of course

Goofy or natural: Goofy

Board shaper & dimensions: I just found a couple of new shapes: a 5′ 10″ semi fish sawn-off square tail and a 6’2″ pinched round tail from north coast shaper Jason Flanagan that I fell in love with on a recent two week stint in the Mentawais.

You’ve featured in the Frothers Daily Update a few times, and so has your youngest son Flynn; it must be good to share a surf with your kids?
I think as a surfer and a general lover of the ocean you couldn’t ask for more. Being able to share your personal passions with the ones you love the most certainly fulfills every dream I could’ve conceived!

As a successful business owner how hard is it to find time to get out amongst it?
Early on it was very difficult. Establishing a solid foundation for the business came foremost, but I think it paid off. It certainly drove me hard to make time for family and surfing and to ensure a solid respect and value for every second I was able to spend in the water and with my family.

You have a secret getaway up the coast; what’s the best thing about heading up there?
I do and I am extremely passionate about my little hideaway. It is a very beautiful piece of coast with a handful of secret spots. Being able to surf with small crowds in the warm waters of the far north coast is one of my favourite things. You really are able to relax and become part of the natural surroundings – waiting for tides, winds and swells, rowing across still waters, pulling mud crabs, sharing the most beautiful things that nature has to offer with family and friends – it sure beats heading to the mall!

Is this one of your all-time favourite surf spots?
It sure is – a nice long left-hander called Wilson’s. But Macaronis would have to be my absolute favourite. After just coming back it’s staying thick on the memory bank!

Where do you see yourself in twenty to thirty years’ time?
Wow, what a question! Really, if I’m still intact, I would love to have a balance of winters in a warm place like the far north coast or Indo, surfing, swimming, fishing, remaining as active as possible and keeping an eye on my kids and family and watching them embrace their lives and the things they love to do!

Any last words?
I would love to congratulate Brad and Billy for pumping out great shots. I’m a big fan! To grow up in Bronte, with Bill, we were lucky enough to share our early mornings with a fortunate few. From one of your oldest frothers – keep frothing!