WSL locks in December Pipe Masters for three more years

Stu Nettle
Form Guide

In an alternate universe, one we'll call Sophie's World for sake of convenience, competitors would currently be readying themselves for the Pipeline Masters, the first contest of the 2019 Championship Tour.

In Sophie's World, the tour would begin in February at Pipeline and end in September at Teahupoo, before the top six men and top four women sailed off in a boat to the Mentawais to determine the respective World Champions.

This plan was first floated in September 2017, two months after Sophie Goldschmidt took over the controls of the WSL, yet since then Goldschmidt has walked back those plans and the 2019 tour looks very much like the tour she inherited: starts in Oz, swings by Rio, bit of South Africa, a Pacific leg in there somewhere, and the title is decided in Hawaii.

In news released on New Year's Eve, the WSL has not only scrapped Sophie's World but locked in a December finish at Hawaii for the next three years. The Pipeline Masters will now be held during it's traditional December waiting period at least until 2021.

Also, the City & Council of Honolulu approved the permit applications for the five other existing Hawaiian WSL events: the Sunset Open, Volcom Pipe Pro, HIC Sunset Pro, Hawaiian Pro, and Vans World Cup.

Again, all of them are approved up until 2021.

Meanwhile, the WSL have once again locked in Quiksilver as the naming sponsor at Snapper Rocks. Till last week the contest appeared on the schedule as the 'Gold Coast Pro'. Other events on the schedule that are yet to secure naming sponsors are the Bali Pro (sponsored by Corona last year), the Margaret River Open (though it will likely pick up the WA Govt sponsor again), J'Bay Open (sponsored by Corona the last two years), the Tahiti Pro, and the Surf Ranch Pro.

Over on the Women's side, Roxy are yet to lock in Snapper - it's still being advertised as the Gold Coast Women's Pro - and their mainstay closing event, the Maui Pro, is now listed as the Hawaii Women's Pro. Back in November, Stab published a rumour that 2018 would be the last time the women visited Honolua, yet nothing was mentioned during or after the contest.

Though the WSL are yet to provide confirmation it appears the event will switch locations.

Comments

Blowin's picture
Blowin's picture
Blowin commented Thursday, 3 Jan 2019 at 2:17pm

Billabong resigned Jack Robinson for a few more years.

They’ll want to position him as a wildcard in the North West billabong event they’ll create and co sponsor to maintain their unsubstantiated claim over the region.

Surf spots , not just surfers , are used to lend credence to the act of screen printing a word onto a T shirt as a way to create consumer loyalty to a bunch of corporate investors.

Also got to love the irony of taxpayers and public locations being used to subsidise a loss leading business move by a company that intends to privatise as much of the surfing experience as possible. Including the waves.

What’s ours is theirs and what’s theirs is theirs.

Giovanni's picture
Giovanni's picture
Giovanni commented Thursday, 3 Jan 2019 at 2:08pm

Well said...

NickT's picture
NickT's picture
NickT commented Friday, 4 Jan 2019 at 1:06pm

Very well worded

tux's picture
tux's picture
tux commented Thursday, 3 Jan 2019 at 1:59pm

Is Gabby boycotting Margs for fear of sharks (or getting a punch in the head)..if hes prepared to let the authorities use Charlie as shark bait I say all is forgiven

goofyfoot's picture
goofyfoot's picture
goofyfoot commented Thursday, 3 Jan 2019 at 2:36pm

One of the rare times jjf fucks up at pipe that photo

Solitude's picture
Solitude's picture
Solitude commented Thursday, 3 Jan 2019 at 4:48pm

He might be just about to swoop back in and under?

simba's picture
simba's picture
simba commented Thursday, 3 Jan 2019 at 2:47pm

so is the w.a event mobile ?or is it back to margies?

simba

stunet's picture
stunet's picture
stunet commented Thursday, 3 Jan 2019 at 2:50pm

Back to Margies. Shifted to late May as less noahs apparently.

Eugene Green's picture
Eugene Green's picture
Eugene Green commented Friday, 4 Jan 2019 at 7:38pm

Haha! noahs all year round and still rapidly multiplying. Lots of action lately.

indo-dreaming's picture
indo-dreaming's picture
indo-dreaming commented Thursday, 3 Jan 2019 at 2:47pm

Bintang need to pull their finger out so we can have the "Bintang Bali Pro"

For further reference and common sense.

General Social issues: Rita Panahi & Lauren Southern
Indigenous issues: Jacinta Price and Anthony Dillion
Gender: Debra Soh.
Islam: Armin Navabi & Brigitte Gabriel
Population: Dick Smith

pittsy's picture
pittsy's picture
pittsy commented Sunday, 6 Jan 2019 at 6:14am

I would chip in if we could get "arak Bali pro"

Blowin's picture
Blowin's picture
Blowin commented Sunday, 6 Jan 2019 at 10:51am

The Balinese Methyl alcohol Open

Brought to you by Skygarden.

freeride76's picture
freeride76's picture
freeride76 commented Thursday, 3 Jan 2019 at 4:13pm

Late May-early June for Margs.

More W swell but more chance of getting smashed by winter fronts.

Not sure about pushing Goldie into April.

By then you're moving away from summer trade wind swells and tropical depression/cyclone patterns and more into the Tasman sea S to SE swells.
I think less consistent for Snapper but if they get a swell you'd expect conditions to be good.
Wonder if they will use D-Bah?

Eugene Green's picture
Eugene Green's picture
Eugene Green commented Friday, 4 Jan 2019 at 7:40pm

Maybe someone will go left at Margs!!!???

evosurfer's picture
evosurfer's picture
evosurfer commented Thursday, 3 Jan 2019 at 6:45pm

Its good to see that someone talked some sense into that stupid female
that runs the show now. Although I think snapper might be a bit late.
jim brown below she came in and redesigned the wheel and when it
turned square reverted back to a normal round wheel why because being
female she knows best. get off the me2 movement its starting to irritate.

IF im not surfing im racing

jimbrown's picture
jimbrown's picture
jimbrown commented Thursday, 3 Jan 2019 at 6:28pm

What's her sex got to do with anything?

Bnkref's picture
Bnkref's picture
Bnkref commented Thursday, 3 Jan 2019 at 10:23pm

x2 on that.

Happy to see Pipe has been locked in for the end of the year.

backhand life's picture
backhand life's picture
backhand life commented Thursday, 3 Jan 2019 at 10:58pm

Fuck me evo, it’s 2019

jimbrown's picture
jimbrown's picture
jimbrown commented Friday, 4 Jan 2019 at 2:00pm

Slow down, Evo, and think about what you're implying. You reckon she turned up to the job interview with Ziff and said "I'm a female, therefore I know best, therefore hire me"?. I daresay she pointed to her demonstrable management skills and achievements in another job in sports. Criticise her decision making and strategy in this sport, not her sex. If nothing else, at least it will make you appear like you have more critical thinking ability than you're currently displaying.

shoredump's picture
shoredump's picture
shoredump commented Friday, 4 Jan 2019 at 7:00am

I think the top 6 grand final event idea is a good one. 6v5, winner v 4 etc till someone meets number 1 seed. All 1 hour heats on one pumping day. It just needs to be at Pipe. I also get the desire for the condensed year with a longer off season. I think the problem is the attachment to the calander year. The waves dictate that the solution comes from a season start in the Southern Hemisphere in about June with a grand final day at Pipe in Feb

NickT's picture
NickT's picture
NickT commented Friday, 4 Jan 2019 at 1:16pm

I still can't believe Cloud Break is no longer part of the tour. That was my favorite event by far. I think it was the most expensive event so can see why it was scrapped in an industry on unstable ground. I also wish they held a second event in Indo, with its large variety of waves, consistent winds and great weather surely a company like Bintang could sponsor it as indo-dreaming mentioned above

Bnkref's picture
Bnkref's picture
Bnkref commented Friday, 4 Jan 2019 at 3:07pm

If you could choose the location of the Indo leg, where would you have it? My vote would be Ulus. A bit more variety there than Keramas and there's a reasonable chance of really solid surf.

Would prefer to stay clear of the rest of Indo to avoid over-exposing the other spots. Keep the attention on Bali.

Gary G's picture
Gary G's picture
Gary G commented Friday, 4 Jan 2019 at 4:10pm

Gary relishes the opportunity for a bit of exposure in Indo. That tropical sun really finds its way into the hard to reach places, evening out the tan.

You and me, Gary, ain’t nothing but mammals so let’s do it* like they do it on the aerobics channel

*faceys

Bnkref's picture
Bnkref's picture
Bnkref commented Friday, 4 Jan 2019 at 5:14pm

You'll be happy with the Hawaii schedule. I gather you like nothing more than pumping Pipe and the big caverns on offer there.

goofyfoot's picture
goofyfoot's picture
goofyfoot commented Friday, 4 Jan 2019 at 7:08pm

Not to mention a spitting Backdoor

truebluebasher's picture
truebluebasher's picture
truebluebasher commented Friday, 4 Jan 2019 at 9:59pm

I 'm likely to be wrong on all points but they need some air time!
* Equal Pay FF with Giant Cheque fiasco. I reckon caught sponsors on the hop?
*2019 is the first year of equal Pay is it not? Few would have been ready to commit?
*Does this not mean that biggest Sponsors are asked to chip in quite a bit more?
*Wouldn't that explain the lack of Trad/Dual Contests being locked in.

Corona events have Surfers running past bar! As in J-Bay Pro bar flies...excuse me!
Hilltop Beer Tents are sad...Ullu terraces flow Golden Corona Fountains [Tick!]
Basically Corona wants Margs/Bells but Beer Tent is not in frame en-route to Arena.

The Oz Leg is the World's largest oldest leg on tour 1985 = Triple Crown(Hawaii).
WSL are trashing World/Oz heritage Pro Surf Safari.
Once WSL kills 34 years of Oz/Pro Surf History the sport is gonna lose some cred.
I'm not even a boardrider & I can see Oz/Surfing is losing a hell of a lot of prestige.
With Australian Surfing remaining silent it oozes a lack of respect for the Sport.
C'mon Aussies! A Whitesandshoe shuffle in the sand dunes or an extra Oz Judge?

2019 Oz history is reset to zero with no collective Oz Triple Crown history! It Sucks!
Imagine if WSL tried breaking up Hawaii Triple Crown... How well did that go?

I don't think it's wrong for Basherz to respect Oz surfing whole. Just say the word!

truebluebasher's picture
truebluebasher's picture
truebluebasher commented Wednesday, 9 Jan 2019 at 7:10pm

9/1/2019 [Gold Coast 9 News]

'Gold Coast Pro' as of today is no more!

2019 WSL Tour [ "Quicky Pro" ] Has been given the tick _/