Jr Guards Meet the team

Taylor Mellinger 

Taylor was born in 1992 in Southern California and grew up in Lake Forest building forts in the woods with his friends and played a variety of sports.  Taylor first found his love for the ocean on the East coast in Maine while freediving and fishing with his family at their vacation home. Taylor developed a love for his main hobby of spearfishing in San Diego, California diving from his family boat.  He has been going to Catalina each summer for a week long dive trip since 2008 and loves to play in the underwater world while hunting pelagic game fish. 

Taylor attended El Toro High school playing water polo and swimming.  He received a scholarship for swim and water polo and attended Concordia University in Irvine.  After completion of his Bachelor of Arts he continued straight into achieving his Master of Science in Kinesiology at Point Loma Nazarene University in 2016. 

Taylor learned to surf at age 18 in his senior year of high school and now has a passion for surfing and bodysurfing.  Taylor followed a natural progression with his new found passions of surfing and history with aquatics and completed lifeguard training and became an ocean lifeguard in San Clemente in 2012.  He has been a lifeguard since during his summers through college and year round since 2017 when he was promoted to Marine Safety Supervisor and Junior Lifeguard Coordinator.  He has been the Junior Lifeguard Coordinator the last two summers and has developed his passion and support for Junior Lifeguard Programs.  Taylor was awareded the honor of  2018 Lifeguard of the Year for the City of San Clemente and represented the Califorina Surf Lifesaving Association in New Zealand as one of two delegates on the 49th year of the official Califorina/ New Zealand Lifeguard Exchange in 2018 .  Taylor now lives in San Clemente and loves to surf and freedive in the local area.

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Vicki Reale

Vicki was born in 1973 in the mid-New South Wales coastal town of Port Maquarie, Australia, and began bodyboarding in 1989 because her brother Pete (a former pro bodyboarder and current top bodyboarding photographer himself) got her into it. She started competing right away, and excelling in all levels of competitive bodyboarding. After high school, Vicki began traveling, meeting up with Jay in Hawaii in the winter of 1991. They had met two years before in Australia when Jay was in town for some international competitions. It was there that Vicki got a taste for the big, hollow surf at spots like Pipe and Off-The-Wall.
Vicki Reale eBodyboarding.comVicki began her pro career that winter and quickly caught the eye of major sponsors allowing her to go on magazine photo trips, and eventually join the new Global Organization of Bodyboarders World Tour. Vicki, the lone Aussie on the Tour held her own with the top girls, and managed Top 10 finishes in the year-end ratings for several years. 

In 1998, she became the first Australian Women's Pro Champ, and her last major event was the 1998 World Surfing Games in Portugal where she finished 3rd. Additionally, Vicki is several-time women's World FlowRider Bodyboarding Champion! Her bodyboarding travels took her to 5 continents on promotional trips, photo shoots, and for competition.  She continues to compete very occasionally in local Southern California events.  

Her accolades include being the first female bodyboarder ever on the cover of Australia's Riptide Magazine. She also appeared on "Baywatch", and in a "Pepsi" television commercial that aired in Australia and New Zealand. Vicki won the BodyBoarding Magazine and Australian Bodyboarder Readers' Polls numerous times and has placed top 5 in the Riptide Peer Poll. She also appeared in over 15 bodyboard-related publications worldwide, in addition to women's sports magazines, newspapers, local and national television, and has hosted TV shows in Japan and the U.S. She loves running and surfing most days and enjoys eating healthy and staying fit, and has completed numerous triathlons and foot races including the LA Marathon and numerous half marathons.  Most importantly she loves being a mom to her daughter Saige who was born in September of 2003 and her son Kieran who was born in November, 2007.

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Jay Reale

Jay hails from Ocean City, Maryland and is the first-ever pro bodyboarder from the east coast. He was born in 1964, and learned to ride waves on inflatable rafts in his early teen years, switching to a bodyboard when his brother Mitch loaned his to Jay one day. He hasn't looked back since. Jay began bodyboarding full-time in 1980 at the age of 16, and entered the local contest scene right away in between working at mom and dad's bakery and 
playing drums and singing in a rock band. He won the fourth event he ever entered, and dominated amateur bodyboarding on the east coast until moving to California in 1987. During that time, he amassed 4 ESA Championship titles, 1 Mid-Atlantic Regional Title, was an ESA All-Star, and winner of the ESA's Marsh Scholarship which he used to get his bachelor's degree in Earth Science/Secondary Education in 1986. Jay was U.S. Amateur Champ in 1986, and took out the Morey Nationals in 1984 and 1986. Jay is recognized as the first-ever "champion" in the sport of bodyboarding by virtue of winning the first series of events that accumulated points toward crowning a champion when he won the 1982 Eastern Surfing Championships Bodyboarding division. 

His travels began just after finishing high school when Reale went to Hawaii for the first Morey World Championships at Pipe in 1982. He competed in that event 17 years in a row! After college, Jay relocated to San Clemente, California to join the fledgling U.S. Pro Tour, and enjoyed success over the course of the next several years ending up as high as 4th in the year-end ratings. During that time, Reale started a whirlwind of travels that took him to 5 continents, over 20 countries, and hundreds of beaches around the world. Promos, contests, and photo shoots were Jay's life, and he gained a reputation as an ambassador for bodyboarding. He also wrote articles for a dozen magazines worldwide, and acted as beach announcer for several contests as well as television commentator for ESPN and Fox Sports broadcasts of bodyboarding events. Jay loaned his announcing talents to several bodyboarding videos as well participating in 5 different How-To videos and even provided the voice for Mike Stewart's Pro Bodyboarding video game. With the advent of the GOB World Tour (now the APB Tour) in the mid-90's, Jay began focussing his competitive efforts on not only that Tour where he ended his best year-1997- ranked 5th, but also on the Australian Tour, the U.S. Tour, and the BIA Tour. He managed Top 16 finishes on all four up until 1998. In 1998, his last full year on Tour, Jay ended the all-new GOB Dropknee Tour rated 6th in the world.

In 2002, Jay regained his amateur status and competed in several events in the 30-and-over division becoming the 2002 U.S. Champion and runner up in both the ESA and BIA Championships as well as the FlowRider World Bodyboarding Championships, and was elected to the ESA All-Star Team for the first time since he was last an amateur in 1986. He came back in 2003 and defended his title as U.S. Senior Bodyboarding Champ once again. Also in 2003, he was honored by being recognized as one of the top ten wave-riding competitors ever to come out of the Eastern Surfing Association, ranking as the lone bodyboarder amongst that group.  

His career has been long and illustrious nabbing 15 magazine cover shots worldwide, countless posters, profiles, and other articles and photos. Jay has appeared many times on ESPN, Prime Ticket, MTV, the Discovery Channel, Nickelodeon, The Learning Channel, and too many local television shows to mention. He's hosted programs in Japan, the U.S. and Australia, as well as commercials for Morey, and radio ads in the U.S., Australia, and Europe. Jay resides in San Clemente with Vicki and their daughter Saige who was born in September of 2003 and son Kieran born November 2007, and he is busy concentrating on keeping eBodyboarding.com on top as the Internet's Bodyboarding Superstore. He spends most of his spare time training and racing in the sport of triathlon and trail running.  He continues to surf and bodyboard over 200 days a year and enjoys trying out for various game shows.

To date, Jay has appeared on "The Dating Game", "Don't Forget Your Toothbrush", "The Weakest Link", "Whammy", "Pet Star" (with his dog Kea), "On The Cover", "Camouflage","Bullseye" and "TKO".  

He has also dabbled in community theater and has appeared in 4 musical productions.  He is also a published writer having written pieces for nearly every bodyboarding publication in the world over the years. 

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