Quiksilver today announced a new surfing festival for women, the Roxy Surf Jam, which will be held on the tropical Fijian islands of Tavarua and Namotu in late April/early May this year.
The main focus of the festival will be the first event of the 2001 Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) Women’s World Championship Tour (WCT).
Fifteen of the world’s top women professionals, plus a wildcard, will compete for US$60,000 prizemoney, the highest prize purse offered in women’s surfing to date. First prize will be US$10,000, with US$6,000 to the runner-up.
The President/CEO of ASP, Wayne “Rabbit” Bartholomew, said today that the ASP Women’s World Championship Tour will kick off in grand style this year with the Roxy Surf Jam.
“As a standalone women’s WCT, at a prime location, the Roxy Surf Jam showcases the future direction of women’s professional surfing and the ASP is delighted to see Roxy take women’s surfing to new heights,” Bartholomew said. “We all look forward to being out there in paradise come late April.”
The main venue for the Roxy Surf Jam will be the famous Cloudbreak Reef, which produces perfect surf in the open ocean nearly two miles south of Tavarua Island. Spectators will view the action from the decks of an inter-island ferry, which will also be the logistics base for the event.
Other surfing venues, depending on swell and wind conditions, will be Restaurants, which is in front of Tavarua Island and widely renowned as one of the best waves in the world, and the numerous breaks on nearby Namotu Island, including Wilkes Passage, Namotu Lefts and Swimming Pools.
Current three-time world professional surfing champion, Layne Beachley, said today that she was looking forward to surfing any one of these spots with just two girls out in the water.
“It’s fantastic that Roxy is sponsoring an all-girls event and staging it in some of the most incredible waves the world has to offer,” Beachley said.
“Going to exotic locations, and separate from the shadow of the men’s tour, is the direction that the women’s pro tour has always wanted to take and we appreciate Roxy’s support in making this possible.”
Contest director Rod Brooks, who has run two successful men’s WCT events in Fiji in the past two years, said he was looking forward to running the first women’s WCT there.
“The surf breaks around the islands of Tavarua and Namotu are very challenging and the women are keen to show their skills and experience. It should be a great event,” he said.
“And we will be selecting a wildcard from the Roxy Trials, which will be held prior to the main event. A lot of surfers have expressed interest in the invitational trials, including Fiji’s top female surfer.”
Besides the WCT event, which counts towards the world title, Roxy is also flying in their teams of surfers from around the world.
They will participate in a festival which includes longboarding, canoe surfing, music and entertainment. This will be based on the nearby island of Namotu.
A special part of the proceedings will be a kava ceremony on Tavarua Island whereby all participants are blessed and prayers are offered for their safety while they are enjoying the ambience of Fiji.