Mick Fanning ‘excited’ for farewell, Olympic role
MICK Fanning is preparing to step off the world surf tour but he will still play a major role in Australia stepping onto the top step of the medal dais at the Tokyo Olympics.
Fanning, who says he is "110%" at peace with his decision to retire from competition, has agreed to an extended role of both mentoring our surfers and also being a national selector ahead of the sports Olympic debut in Tokyo in 2020.
And while he looks forward to days of waking to a "clear schedule", Fanning said he is excited about his role in Australia's bid for historic gold in Tokyo.
Fanning is one of three former world champions on the selection committee which also includes Surfing Australia chair and seven-time world champion Layne Beachley and four-time world titleholder Mark Richards.
"With those people we have a very solid and grounded group," Fanning said. "I definitely think we are in good stead.
"Australia has always had a very strong surfing community, a great backbone and whoever steps up will do Australia proud. I can definitely see medals for sure.
"In saying that the Olympic is a whole different beast and none of them have been before. But in saying that it will be exciting."
Closer to hand for Fanning, however, is his farewell to 17-years of World Tour competition at the venue where he won his first major event as a dynamic 19-year-old wildcard.
"I'm starting to get excited for sure,'' Fanning said ahead of Thursday's possible start of the famed Rip Curl Pro at Bells Beach, an event he has won on four previous occasions..
"It is getting very real. It's going to be a fun week.
"It's been something that's been going on in my mind for a few years now. It was always the idea to come and finish at Bells.
"I just want to go out there and put on a good performance.
"I get to surf against the best guys in the world and every time I paddle out at Bells there's so much history, so I just really want to take in the moments.''
Fanning said for his entire family will also be in Victoria for his farewell event.