Photographer / Surfer

The Inertia

This is surfing’s modern Cold War. 18 surfers from New Jersey, New York and other eastern seaboard states will return to Asbury Park, New Jersey this March for the second annual event simply called the Cold War. 

Team captains, Andrew Gesler and Sam Hammer are back for another round this year with the same format as the inaugural event. It will be a team vs. team contest that’s added some East Coast heavy hitters to the 2017 roster. Hammer, a co-director of the event, indicated that they’ve decided to expand to five people from outside of the NJ/NY surf scene who are already familiar with cold water. “The goal has always been to have more outside participation,” he says. “Get the best surfers we can get in touch with and into our best conditions.”

2016 winning team captain Andrew Gesler feels the Cold War has something unique, setting it apart from other surfing events. “Bringing a team aspect amidst the wintery elements makes for a one of a kind experience not only for the athletes, but for the crowd too,” said Gesler.

So on March 4th the kick-off party will be held at the Wonder Bar in Asbury Park, where the captains will select their teams. The waiting period will begin March 5th through the 31st and has a 48 call window once forecasters determine that a proper swell is in place.


Editor’s Note: For updates, you can find the Cold War on Instagram @ColdWarSurf and #coldwar

Photo: Tim Torchia

2017 Cold War Invited Competitors (Confirmed) 

Brett Barley, Buxton, NC


Travis Beckmann, Montauk, NY

Ben Bourgeois, Wrightsville Beach, NC

Vince Boulanger, Ocean City, MD

Andrew Gesler, Ocean City, NJ – Team Captain

Mike Gleason, Long Branch, NJ

Sam Hammer, Lavallette, NJ – Team Captain


Zack Humphreys, Margate, NJ

Tommy Ihnken, Asbury Park, NJ

Rob Kelly, Ocean City, NJ

Ben McBrien, Ocean Grove, NJ

Pete Mendia, Palm Beach, FL

Clay Pollioni, Ortley Beach, NJ


Cam Richards, Garden City Beach, SC

Pat Schmidt, Manasquan, NJ

Balaram Stack, Point Lookout, NY

Randy Townsend, Surf City, NJ

Conor Willem, Surf City, NJ



Brendan Tighe, Point Pleasant, NJ

Zack Dayton, East Hampton, NY

Photo: Tim Torchia


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