After three days of comprehensive Association of Surfing Professionals(ASP) Executive Board meetings, voting members emerged enthusiastic latelast night with a unanimously revised 2001 schedule supported bysurfers, events, regional and International ASP officials. The tour willcommence in Australia next April at Bells Beach, weave its way aroundthe globe to the most idyllic of surfing locations, then reach itsseason finale in early December at Sunset Beach, Hawaii – one of theworld’s premier big wave locations.
Professional surfers realized their ‘Dream Tour’ as one embodying allthe existing prime venues around the world, including Tavarua (Fiji) forthe women, G-Land (Ind) for the men, Teahupoo (Tah) for both divisions,as well as Jeffreys Bay (SAfr) and Mundaka (Spn). Finishing in Hawaiiwas a crucial component agreed by all parties, with Rip Curl upgradingtheir current World Qualifying Series (WQS) event to WCT status.Following the season ender, the Pipe Masters will become a ‘Champion ofChampions’ specialty at the famed Banzai Pipeline.
A focal point of the entire schedule was to establish strong regionalWQS legs, with Australasia, Europe, and South America all boastingconcurrent events. ASP Asia, North America, and Africa are also offeringkey tournaments with a pledge to further develop their tours with globalbalance being the collective vision.
Also announced was the ASP World Longboard Tour, featuring events inSpain, Portugal and Brazil – the tour climaxing with the Oxbow WorldChamps at the fabled Jeffreys Bay (SAfr) in August. The Quiksilver WorldMasters will head to Ireland in 2001, hosting the legends of the sport.
A more detailed press release will be forthcoming, outlining highlightsand new initiatives from the world governing body.
Official 2001 World Championship Tour (WCT) Schedule
1. (Apr 10-22) Rip Curl Pro – Bells Beach, VIC, AUS – Men/Women(US$310,000)
2. (Apr 28-May 5) Roxy Surf Jam – Tavarua, Fiji – Women (US$60,000)
3. (May 8-19) Gotcha Pro Tahiti presented by Globe – Teahupoo, Tahiti -Men/Women (US$310,000)
4. (May 26-Jun 7) Quiksilver Pro – G-Land, Java – Men (US$250,000)
5. (Jun 27- Jul 5) Rio Surf Int’l – Rio, Brazil – Men (US$250,000)
6. (Jul 17-27) Billabong Pro – Jeffreys Bay, South Africa – Men(US$250,000)
7. *(Aug 1-5) Bluetorch Pro – Huntington Beach, USA – Men/Women(US$310,000)* Tentative until confirmation Dec 21st 2000
8. (Sep 10-15) Billabong Pro – Trestles, USA – Men (US$250,000)
9. (Sep 17-25) Figueira Pro – Figueira da Foz, Portugal – Men/Women(US$310,000)
10. (Sep 27-Oct 9) Billabong Pro – Bakio/Mundaka, Spain – Men/Women(US$310,000)
11. * (Nov) Billabong Girls – Hawaii – Women (US$60,000)
12. (Nov 26-Dec 7) Rip Curl Cup – Sunset Beach, Hawaii – Men(US$310,000)
Stay tuned for TransWorld Surf Business own behind-the-scenes report onthe December 2?4 ASP Board Meeting and its implications to the eventowners, surfers, and the sport in general.