Surfer Profile: Barton Lynch – Surfd

Barton Lynch, born in 1963, is an iconic Australian surfer best known for winning the World Surfing Championship in 1988. Starting his professional journey on the Men’s Championship Tour in 1983, Lynch’s surfing style and competitive drive led him to a successful career, spanning over a decade and including 17 world tour event wins. Post-retirement, his influence continues through coaching, surf commentary, and advocacy for ocean conservation. He’s also a member of the Australian Surfing and Sporting Halls of Fame, solidifying his legacy in the surfing world.


Place of birth Sydney, Australia
Hometown Sydney, Australia
Year of birth August 9, 1962
Stance Goofy
First season Men’s Championship Tour in 1983

Event wins

During his professional surfing career, Lynch won 17 world tour events. Some of his notable victories include winning the Op Pro in Huntington Beach in both 1987 and 1991. Additionally, he triumphed at the 1990 Quiksilver in Memory of Eddie Aikau event.

Lynch’s career was marked by consistent top performances. He placed in the top four a total of eight times throughout his career, a record at the time until it was surpassed by Kelly Slater. His greatest competitive moment came in Hawaii, where he won both the 1988 Billabong Pro and the 1988 ASP World Tour title.


Barton Lynch, born on 9 August 1963 in Manly, New South Wales, Australia, emerged as one of the most talented surfers of his generation. His journey in surfing began at a young age in the Sydney suburb of Whale Beach, where he started surfing when he was just 8 years old. This early start allowed Lynch to develop a flexible and gymnastic style, which became his signature on the world stage.

His early years were marked by success in junior competitions, including victories in the Pro Junior, the JJJ Junior, and the ASPA ratings. These accomplishments set the stage for his entry into professional surfing.

Lynch’s professional career spanned the early 1980s to the mid-1990s. During this time, he became renowned for his competitive drive and tactical approach to surfing. His ability to perform vertical maneuvers with fluidity and power brought him immediate success on the ASP World Tour. Lynch spent 13 consecutive years in the top 16 of the tour, earning a reputation as a brilliant competitor and a forthright, articulate spokesperson for the sport.

The pinnacle of his career came in 1988 when he won both the Billabong Pro and the ASP World Tour title in Hawaii. This achievement was a testament to his skill and determination, and it solidified his place in the history of professional surfing.

Beyond his competitive successes, Lynch is known for his contributions to the sport post-retirement. He has been involved in coaching and mentoring young surfers, sharing his knowledge and passion for the sport. Additionally, Lynch has taken on roles in surf commentary and analysis, where his insights are greatly valued by fans and the surfing community.

Lynch’s dedication to the sport extends to his advocacy for ocean conservation. He has used his platform to raise awareness about the importance of preserving marine environments and promoting sustainable practices.

Living in the Sydney suburb of Avalon with his wife Holly, Lynch remains a revered figure in the surfing world, celebrated for both his competitive achievements and his ongoing contributions to the sport and its community.


During his surfing career, Barton Lynch used a variety of surfboards tailored to his competitive style and the demands of professional surfing. Some of the boards he rode include:

  1. A 6’3″ single fin surfboard shaped under the Insight surfboards label by Greg Webber. This board was used during his time as the 1988 ASP World Champion. It represents the classic design and craftsmanship of the era and reflects Lynch’s competitive prowess during his championship years.
  2. An 8’4″ thruster gun shaped by John “JC” Carper in 1994. This board is indicative of the evolution in surfboard design during Lynch’s career, accommodating big wave surfing requirements.

These surfboards are not only functional but also hold a place as collectible items, representing significant periods in Lynch’s career and the history of surfing.

Quotes by Barton Lynch

“It’s all about the joy. In surfing, we call it stoke. Surfers are stoked, and surfing makes you stoked. It brings something to your life that’s so meaningful, that connection to nature.” – Barton Lynch

“There’s the game with yourself, first and foremost, then there’s the game with the ocean, secondarily, and third is the game with your opponent, and they’re in that order of priority.” – Barton Lynch

“You can never beat the ocean, you’re never the boss, it’s always the boss, and it brings such joy into your life to be engaged with the ocean in the way we do, riding waves.” – Barton Lynch

Other Activities and Interests

Apart from his professional surfing career, Barton Lynch is involved in various other activities and interests:

  • Coaching and Mentoring: Post-retirement, Lynch has focused on coaching young surfers, sharing his vast experience and knowledge of the sport.
  • Surf Commentary and Analysis: He is well-regarded for his insightful commentary and analysis in surf events, where his deep understanding of the sport shines through.
  • Ocean Conservation Advocacy: Lynch is a vocal advocate for ocean conservation, emphasizing the importance of preserving marine environments.
  • Event Organization: He organizes BL’s Blast Off, a pre-junior surf event held in Sydney, fostering the development of young surfing talents.
  • Business Ventures: Lynch has established the Surfers Group, a consultancy firm, demonstrating his entrepreneurial spirit.
  • Collaborations in Surfing Projects: His involvement in surfing-related projects and events reflects his ongoing commitment to the surfing community.

Interesting Facts about Barton Lynch

  1. Barton Lynch began surfing at the age of 8 and quickly developed a distinct style and competitive drive.
  2. Lynch won the World Surfing Championship in 1988.
  3. Throughout his 15-year professional career, he won 17 world tour events.
  4. After retiring from professional surfing, Lynch transitioned into coaching and mentoring young surfers.
  5. He has also become known for his insightful surf commentary and analysis.
  6. Lynch is an advocate for ocean conservation, using his platform to promote sustainable practices.
  7. He was inducted into the Australian Surfing Hall of Fame in 1998 and the Australian Sporting Hall of Fame in 2000.
  8. Lynch is the namesake of the video game “Barton Lynch Pro Surfing.”

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