IOC To Honor Winning Surfing Team In Panama

Left:The 2012 International Olympic Committee´s President´s Trophy. It was first awarded to the ISA World Team Champion in 1996. Photo: ISA. Right: The letter from IOC President, Jacques Rogge, wishing all the competitors the best of lucks.

DaKine ISA World Junior Surfing Championship Presented by Billabong
April 14 to 22, 2012
Playa Venao, Panama

When it comes time to hand out the contest hardware for the DaKine ISA World Junior Surfing Championship Presented by Billabong, the Gold Medal-winning team is going to have more than medals to take home. The Gold Medal Team will be receiving the IOC President's Trophy, from the International Olympic Committee and its president, Jacques Rogge.

"The IOC Trophy is something very special and very unique; no other surfing organization in the world has a specific trophy from the IOC," said Fernando Aguerre, the President of the ISA. "This has great significance both for this event and the future of surfing as we work toward its involvement in the Olympic Games."

GDE Bertoni, a trophy and medal manufacturer in Milan, Italy designed the nine-inch trophy. The company also produced two of the most famous soccer trophies: the FIFA World Cup Trophy and the UEFA Cup trophy.

"This World Championship - organized under the auspices of the International Surfing Association (ISA) - will certainly serve as a stepping stone for all of these young surfers to prepare themselves for further experience at higher levels and become future sporting models for the next generation," wrote IOC President Rogge, in the letter accompanying the trophy. "Good luck to all the competitors!”

Over 400 athletes and team supporters from 30 nations are making the trip to Playa Venao to participate in the largest and most important under-18 surfing competition in the world. The overall team title will be determined by a points system based on how the athletes from the respective nations place within their divisions. Australia has won six of the last nine years, while Peru won the Team Gold Medal in 2011.

The DaKine ISA World Junior Surfing Championship Presented by Billabong begins on April 14 with the traditional ISA Opening Ceremony, which includes a Parade of Nations and the Sands of the World Ceremony. Competition will begin on the morning of the 15th.