The Professional Surfing Tour of America (PSTA) kicks off its 2001 season with the Quiksilver Pro at Trestles April 23-28, a one-star men’s World Qualifying Series event with a $10,000 prize purse. An airshow will also take place as part of the PSTA 2001 Airshow series.
“We’re proud to bring professional surfing back to the U.S., and like the direction the PSTA is going in bringing back the tour. Hopefully this will stimulate the procession of U.S. surfers into the WCT,” said Taylor Whisenand, marketing director for Quiksilver. “In the future, with time for preparation, Quiksilver plans on elevating the status of the Quiksilver Pro at Trestles to one of the premiere WQS events on the PSTA Tour.”
The PSTA offers up-and-coming amateurs and aspiring professional surfers the opportunity to gain experience on their way to the Association of Surfing Professionals World Championship Tour (WCT). Some of the surfers competing at the Quiksilver Pro will include Quiksilver team riders Fred Patacchia from Haleiwa, HI; Ben Bourgeois from Wrightsville Beach., NC; six-time world champion Kelly Slater of Cocoa Beach, FL; Kyle Knox from San Diego, and Dylan Graves of Puerto Rico.
“We are fulfilling our dream of becoming the preeminent U.S. surfing tour,” said Jeff Grell, PSTA tour manager. “With the recent announcement of PSTA Rip Curl event (Sept. 4-9) and now the Quiksilver Pro at Lower Trestles, it’s something for the surfing community to be very excited about. We thank Quiksilver for stepping up to kick-off 2001.”
Preliminary rounds start on Monday, April 23, continuing through the week. The quarters, semi’s and finals will take place on Saturday, April 28, along with th finals of the PSTA Air Show. Preliminary rounds for the airshow will take place between April 25-27, depending on conditions.
The Airshow, a fun, spectator-oriented event, will consist of 16 surfers, with judges giving points for the biggest completed aerial maneuvers. “It’s a whole different type of surfer that does airs,” said Scott Waring, head judge for the PSTA. “They are concentrating on innovating big, extreme moves.”
Few surf spots around the world possess the majesty and respect of Lower Trestle, located between Los Angeles and San Diego, one mile south of San Clemente. Hundreds of surfers have kick-started their professional and amateur careers at the famed locale, either with great contest performances or by surfing the high-performance break very day.
The State Parks hosts only three high-caliber events per year, which for 2001 include the PSTA Quiksilver Pro, the WCT Billabong Pro in Sept. and an NSSA event in June. “California State Parks recognize that Lower Trestles affords a spectacular arena for an organized, competitive, surfing exhibition,” said Steve Long, lifeguard supervisor for the area. “We are happy to welcome the community and environmentally friendly PSTA to San Onofre State Beach for the WQS competition.”
The PSTA will have a solid TV package in place that includes national cable airings, syndication and international distribution. Results and highlights will be available on the Net and in the surf media as well.The PSTA is majority-owned by DynoComm, which has produced over 1,200 extreme sports related TV programs since 1982. The Emmy Award winning company (which has covered ASP Tour events for over 18 years) is an owner of ESPN’s X Surf Series, and helped bring the Bud Surf Tour into prominence by producing the TV programming for Prime Network. A revamped information-focused PSTA web site will formally launch on, March 19 at www.prosurfingtour.com. Fans can also access TV air dates and times for their specific region by checking out www.psta.tv.com.