Legends of the Waves: Team Siargao's Surfing Saga
Pphoto by Siargao Surf Co.
Throwback to 20 years ago, circa 2004, when the waves of Siargao Island were ruled by a team of surfing legends whose names echoed through the halls of Philippine surfing history. This group, affectionately known as Team Siargao, was a formidable force in the local and international surfing scene, leaving an indelible mark on the sport.
Among the members of this esteemed team were individuals whose talents transcended the waves and captured the hearts of surfing enthusiasts worldwide. Leading the pack was Mike Bilgrem, a trailblazer whose innovative style and fearless approach to the waves set him apart as a true surfing icon.
Jomar Gloria, another standout member of Team Siargao, showcased his exceptional skills and unwavering dedication to the sport, inspiring countless aspiring surfers along the way. Alongside him was Fernando "Yukyuk" Alipayo, hailed as the Best Filipino Surfer of 2000 and a formidable competitor on the international stage, particularly at the prestigious Siargao International Surfing competitions.
Bonifacio Figuron, Manuel "Wilmar" Melindo, and Alex Comandante were also integral members of the team, each contributing their unique talents and passion for surfing to the collective success of Team Siargao. Their accolades, including championship titles at various surfing events, solidified their status as legends in the Philippine surfing community.
The women of Team Siargao were equally formidable, with Manette Alcala leading the charge as the Champion of the Women's Division at the 2003 Lanuza Surfing Festival. Her skill and determination served as an inspiration for female surfers across the country, proving that gender was no barrier to success in the sport.
Carlito Nogalo and Rodolfo "Usot" Alcala were renowned for their prowess in the waves, with Nogalo earning the title of Best Filipino Surfer in 2003 and Usot clinching the championship at the 8th Siargao National Surfing Cup. Their contributions to Team Siargao were instrumental in establishing the team's dominance in the local surfing scene.
Last but certainly not least, Dionisio "Dodo" Espejon, a four-time National Champion at the Siargao National Surfing Cup from 1999 to 2002, brought unparalleled skill and experience to the team, serving as a mentor and role model for his fellow surfers.
Together, these surfers formed a brotherhood bonded by their shared love for the ocean and the exhilarating thrill of riding the waves. Their legacy continues to inspire generations of surfers, reminding us of the enduring spirit of adventure and camaraderie that defines the sport of surfing. As we look back on the glory days of Team Siargao, we celebrate not only their remarkable achievements but also the timeless beauty of the waves that united them.