O’Neill Inc., the world’s leading manufacturer of wetsuits, welcomes theopportunity to once again host the O’Neill Cold Water Classic at SteamerLane. “Santa Cruz is our home and surfing is the heart and soul ofO’Neill’s business,” states Mark Tinkess, O’Neill’s Vice President ofMarketing. “The Lane”, as local Santa Cruz surfers refer to the surfspot, “is a big, cold, gnarly wave which even the best surfers in theworld find challenging. Not to mention the fact that the Lane is perhapsthe best spectator venue for a surf contest to be found anywhere in theworld”.[IMAGE 1]
*** The Surfers ***
Professional surfers from around the globe including, Shane Beschen,Cory Lopez, Timmy Reyes and Rochelle Ballard. The strong Santa Cruzcontingent will also be present including former WCT surfers ChrisGallagher and Adam Replogle as well as local pros Omar Etcheverry,Kieran Horn, Kenny Collins, Shawn Barron, Flea Virostko, Anthony Ruffoand Jason “ratboy” Collins
*** The O’Neill Story ***
The story of O’Neill begins with company founder Jack O’Neill, one ofthe heartiest surfers of the last 50 years. In the early 1950’s, Jack’spassion was to develop a lightweight, flexible garment that wouldprotect surfers and divers from the bone chilling, under 50 degreetemperatures off the coast of Northern California. The story of O’Neillhas been driven by this same passion ever since 1952 to make sure that”It’s always summer on the inside.”
O’Neill has been the world’s premiere wetsuit manufacturer since JackO’Neill fabricated his first foam vest in 1952. Shortly thereafter, Jackwalked out of his garage workshop and into the Pacific Ocean wearing hislightest and most functional design yet – a suit made of neoprene. Hisfabrication of this material into a wetsuit opened new worlds tosurfers, divers and other water sports enthusiasts. At last there was away to enjoy their specific sport, regardless of the water temperature.
Over the years, O’Neill has maintained the industry’s finest researchand development team, devoted to continual experiments with designs andmaterials to maximize warmth in the ocean or the snow – with everincreasing functionality.
In truth, O’Neill has been responsible for at least 90 percent of thewetsuit industries design innovations over the last 50 years. With astrong commitment to continuing this process, O’Neill is still leadingthe way as we enter the 21st century.
Today, more than 47 years after Jack stepped into the Pacific Oceanwearing the Original wetsuit, the O’Neill name remains synonymous withthe most advanced, most innovative wetsuits and active wear in theworld. Because of O’Neill’s bold, pioneering efforts, millions now enjoythe ocean and lakes in comfort and style.