Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach Cancelled for 2021; Returns 2022

MELBOURNE, Victoria, Australia (Friday, February 12, 2021) - The World Surf League today announced that the Championship Tour (CT) will return to Bells Beach in 2022 and beyond thanks to the new three-year deal that was signed between the WSL and it's longtime partners Rip Curl and the Victorian Government. The deal secures this iconic event into the future and ensures that any WSL World Title hopeful will need to navigate the notorious Bells bowl if they have any chance at becoming a World Champion and that the coveted bell will be rung for many Easters to come.

The WSL made the extremely difficult decision to cancel the Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach CT event for 2021. The decision was made after the WSL was unable to secure a pre-approved bubble in Victoria ahead of the event, leaving significant risk attached to sudden public health measures in reaction to COVID-19 such as lockdowns, state border restrictions, and event cancellations. The WSL respects and understands the decision of the Victorian Government in this challenging time.

The WSL sincerely thanks the Victorian Government and the local community for their understanding of the 2021 event cancellation and their commitment to the next three years of supporting one of surfing's most special events. We look forward to returning to Victoria, and in particular, the Surf Coast Shire in 2022.

"It was an extremely difficult decision to cancel one of the most iconic events on the Championship Tour," said WSL Asia Pacific General Manager, Andrew Stark. "However, we are genuinely excited to confirm the Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach event into the future with a new three-year agreement that will ensure the continuation of one of surfing's most historical events. We genuinely thank the Victorian Government and our key partners, including Rip Curl and the Surf Coast Shire, for their understanding throughout this incredibly challenging time and we look forward to working with them in the future to ensure the Bell is rung annually."

"The Rip Curl Pro is known around the world and loved at home - and it's great that it will be returning to Bells Beach in 2022 and for at least two more years after that," said Minister for Tourism, Sport and Major Events, Martin Pakua. "Bells at Easter is a pillar of our major events calendar and one of the reasons it's the best in the country."

Rip Curl, a brand that was ‘Born at Bells,' is looking forward to welcoming the world's best back in 2022 and partnering with the WSL to make the event bigger and better than ever upon its return.

"We were really excited about welcoming the world's best surfers back to the Rip Curl Pro this Easter," said Chief Brand and Marketing officer," Neil Ridgway. "Tyler Wright is leading the women's rankings and Gabe Medina is second so it was all set to be a doozy for us 40 years after the Big Bells Swell of Easter 1981. Unfortunately, the WSL had to cancel the 2021 event due to the risk of a sudden change in COVID-19 restrictions. While we are completely gutted for all of the local fans and businesses, keeping the Surf Coast Shire and wider Victoria COVID-19 free is the top priority. The Rip Curl Pro will be back at Bells next Easter as per our contract with WSL and we guarantee the party will be epic. In the meantime The Bell stays here in Torquay where it rightfully belongs and we are stoked the World Tour is up and running again. Congrats to the WSL for getting the Tour back up and running in this challenging time for world sport."

"As the spiritual home of Australian surfing, Bells Beach, is an iconic leg of the World Tour and the winner's honour roll reads like a who's who of world surfing," said Cr Libby Stapleton, Mayor Surf Coast Shire Council. "The Surf Coast community values the Rip Curl Pro at Bells Beach very much - it is an integral part of our identity and economy. The event attracts tens of thousands of visitors to the area, and for many it is an annual pilgrimage."

"Surfing Victoria are ecstatic to hear the future of the Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach is secure," said Surfing Victoria CEO and former Bells event runner-up Adam Robertson. "We understand the prestige that this event holds and we're excited to continue working with our partners at the WSL, Rip Curl, Visit Victoria and the Surf Coast Shire to bring the Rip Curl Pro back to Bells Beach for the foreseeable future."

The World Surf League is working closely with Australia's State Governments and continues to have conversations regarding the locations for the upcoming Australian leg of the Championship Tour (CT). We are currently discussing multiple options to be best prepared to get the CT back on and running. We will share more information in the coming days.

All tour stops and dates subject to change due to applicable COVID-19 related restrictions, including global travel restrictions.

Comments

thermalben's picture
thermalben's picture
thermalben Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 6:17am

Feels like a Netflix-docco kinda fortnight for the WSL, doesn't it?

Blowin's picture
Blowin's picture
Blowin Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 6:27am

WSL staging their own Fyre festival

Sprout's picture
Sprout's picture
Sprout Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 9:56am

LOL

thermalben's picture
thermalben's picture
thermalben Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 6:25am

Interesting para:

"The World Surf League is working closely with Australia's State Governments and continues to have conversations regarding the locations for the upcoming Australian leg of the Championship Tour (CT). We are currently discussing multiple options to be best prepared to get the CT back on and running. We will share more information in the coming days."

This suggests Margs won't be happening (no surprise). And perhaps Gold Coast too, seeing it's still listed as 'tentative' on the WSL website?

(also note: Rip Curl are now listed as sponno of Newy, 'presented by' Corona - sponno of Goldy).

velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 8:07am

Newy has been presented to us by corona, in a roundabout way.

ringmaster's picture
ringmaster's picture
ringmaster Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 6:46am

How's the complete overload of corporate spin in that article from all stakeholders.

Vomit inducing.

memlasurf's picture
memlasurf's picture
memlasurf Saturday, 13 Feb 2021 at 8:48am

Yes ringa, my thoughts exactly.

frog's picture
frog's picture
frog Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 7:04am

"we are genuinely excited"
"we genuinely thank"
In the same paragraph.
Does that mean if they do not add in the word "genuinely" in press releases they are actually telling fibs?

Perhaps then "Surfing Victoria are ecstatic to hear..." means that Surfing Victoria are not actually "ecstatic" (which means a state of sudden, intense, overpowering emotion) and avoided the final vinegar strokes after all.

neilridgway's picture
neilridgway's picture
neilridgway Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 8:07am

I got "doozy", "big swell of 81", "gutted" and "party will be epic" in mine! Hopefully that offsets the corpo some. Haha...

memlasurf's picture
memlasurf's picture
memlasurf Saturday, 13 Feb 2021 at 8:50am

You are head of marketing though!

NDC's picture
NDC's picture
NDC Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 9:11am

+1 Frogg

AndyM's picture
AndyM's picture
AndyM Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 5:57pm

Yeah I definitely want Surfing Victoria to be genuinely ecstatic, thank you very much.

bazattaz's picture
bazattaz's picture
bazattaz Saturday, 13 Feb 2021 at 10:25am

Or does a double 'genuinely' cancel itself out - so they are not really genuine at all...

Andrew P's picture
Andrew P's picture
Andrew P Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 7:16am

...And the Circus Leaves Town

MRsinglefin's picture
MRsinglefin's picture
MRsinglefin Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 8:07am

And arrives @ 2291. Merewether SLSC being painted, extra Council staff cleaning up Bathers Way and Blue Door coffee sales at all time high.

campbell's picture
campbell's picture
campbell Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 9:03am

From what I see here every year there is no better way to finally get all the backpackers moved on and a year worth of rubbish cleaned up by the local council than having the surf comp roll into town. Laws mowed to perfection, blocked toilets finally fixed it goes on and on.
Being locked out of your break and having the tents and infrastructure set up 3 weeks prior left place for 3 weeks after they leave is a rather annoying but hey it takes 6 weeks to run 4 days of contest apparently (and the wsl wonder why their business plan is fucked?) .
Good luck Newcastle , you are very welcome to take the Margs comp too if you want it.

seaslug's picture
seaslug's picture
seaslug Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 12:54pm

Agree, stay the fuck away from Margs WSL

ouboet's picture
ouboet's picture
ouboet Saturday, 13 Feb 2021 at 9:22am

who might this grumpy old man be?

Andrew P's picture
Andrew P's picture
Andrew P Saturday, 13 Feb 2021 at 11:59am

Muchas Gracias

indo-dreaming's picture
indo-dreaming's picture
indo-dreaming Saturday, 13 Feb 2021 at 12:48pm

ha ha....If only Newcastle was known as Sky Valley.

Welcome to Newcastle just doesn't have the same ring to it.

Andrew P's picture
Andrew P's picture
Andrew P Saturday, 13 Feb 2021 at 6:40pm

Wouldn’t mind if a Demon Cleaner came for One Inch Man Starkey. Yeah

memo...'s picture
memo...'s picture
memo... Saturday, 13 Feb 2021 at 12:11pm

simba's picture
simba's picture
simba Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 7:27am

so probably only the newcastle contest on now......mmmm .....

shoredump's picture
shoredump's picture
shoredump Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 7:42am

Here comes a NSW bubble. Multiple contests in the works I’d say

Stu2d2's picture
Stu2d2's picture
Stu2d2 Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 7:50am

Manly, smith lakes and Avoca? All currently hold ( or held) QS events..

shoredump's picture
shoredump's picture
shoredump Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 7:58am

I’d put money on that

mick-free's picture
mick-free's picture
mick-free Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 8:58am

Smiths Lake....its flat as, much better cennie coast.

Blowin's picture
Blowin's picture
Blowin Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 7:53am

The WSL Asia Pacific GM retreats to the WSL Australasian office HQ to contemplate how best to manage all stakeholders* in the Australian World Tour.

lost's picture
lost's picture
lost Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 8:08am

“Genuinely” contemplating me thinks. What a shit show.

frog's picture
frog's picture
frog Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 9:05am

Starky is in there getting genuinely ecstatic with some Surfing Victoria luminaries. Toilet paper handy too!!

NDC's picture
NDC's picture
NDC Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 9:13am

:)

goofyfoot's picture
goofyfoot's picture
goofyfoot Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 7:57am

What a disaster this pro surfing thing is

iamlegend's picture
iamlegend's picture
iamlegend Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 8:01am

They will hold a cluster of comps in NSW. Sounds like they have no where else to go. Its a pity the NT does not have surf.

lost's picture
lost's picture
lost Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 8:11am

...at this point in time I’m not sure that actually having waves is a key criteria. Maybe that guy from the “weird waves” series could step in for Stark and Co - he always finds waves and the locals seem absolutely desperate to show him them....and he seems “genuinely” stoked to surf them.

memlasurf's picture
memlasurf's picture
memlasurf Saturday, 13 Feb 2021 at 8:53am

All hail Ben Gravy.

velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 8:11am

NT does get some surf sometimes and Darwin has a wavepool I think.

Here's some related FNQ type footage:

https://www.news.com.au/technology/science/animals/moment-giant-croc-gul...

Pops's picture
Pops's picture
Pops Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 9:47am

Just gotta watch the sharks, crocs and stingers...

truebluebasher's picture
truebluebasher's picture
truebluebasher Sunday, 14 Feb 2021 at 1:00am

2009 Darwin hosts first Oz -Wave pool International Surf events
Arafura Games 80 nations / Paralympic Sanctioned / Mixed ability
ILS Ocean Events - Surf Races - Rescue Tubes
https://www.abc.net.au/reslib/200905/r371856_1726198.jpg
2012 Darwin was the first Oz wavepool endorsed by Surfing Australia.
https://www.topendshortstays.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2014/12/IOB066834...
World Champ surfer coached Stark's SA Vegemite Gromz.
Starky / SA / SLSA / ILS / Olympics endorsed Wave Pool .
With it's own resident World Champ Pro caddy Shack.

Way too many waves & way to much action for WSL Booth.
1 cent per lineup would blow Starky's $3m budget.

velocityjohnno wants to pluck Vicco Wavepool events outta thin air.
Luckily we can now do that in the Covid era...just cross yer fingers

tbb will turn Vicco's frown upside down to regain yer crown.

Oops! Bad news first...Urbnsurf is in Mutant Lockdown. (Boo!)
18th Feb 2021 Urbnsurf comes out of Lockdown (Yeah!)

These Comps fit the Bill, but no idea if they're Spectator Events?
Gromz must have Parental / Team Supervision...surely!

19th Feb 2021 SurfAid Cup @ The Point Cup Urbnsurf Melbourne.
https://surfaid.org/URBNSURF2021

15th March 2021 Rip Curl Gromsearch National Final Urbnsurf Mbne.
https://surfingaustralia.com/victoria-to-host-rip-curl-gromsearch-nation...

16th April 2021 SurfAid Cup @ The Point Urbnsurf Melbourne
SurfAid lists 2 dates...unsure either either or Both?
https://surfaid.org/surfaidcup

Goldie has not held a WSL spectator comp since 2018.
Goldie is also the only CT comp never to pay equal prize money.
Kinda creepy as Goldie has the most surfie chicks.
So if Ben is right...2018 >2022 (No GC = Pay CT Comp)

Now add No North Shore Women's Comp for over 10 Years.
Under WSL watch 15 years No Goldie/North Shore Chix. (Boo!)
Crew can read many mixed messages into that.(Chix can't Surf!)
Gonna be plenty of WSL Blokes sporting Black Eyes!
Think Soph' might have another shot at this!

udo's picture
udo's picture
udo Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 8:08am
lost's picture
lost's picture
lost Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 9:48am

Surfs a hell of a lot better than Elo

thermalben's picture
thermalben's picture
thermalben Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 8:10am

WSL must have their own centrifuge in order to create this amount of positive spin. 

"WSL secures the future of Bells in the wake of cancellation".

brutus's picture
brutus's picture
brutus Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 8:33am

pretty funny to see this photo , which is not Bells , but Centerside........bit like when SCS made a presentation to WSR......on their map they were saying Bells , but it was Point Addis....simply put...Kooks!

Jono's picture
Jono's picture
Jono Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 8:40am

And if you zoom in on a larger version, the 2 back waves are a photoshop job, so not even a real lineup shot.

brutus's picture
brutus's picture
brutus Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 10:00am

I have actually seen waves peeling from the back of Centerside thru to the bowl.....Troy Brooks actually made one from there to the bowl about 6 -7 years ago....I just love it when the supposed Elite of the sport of surfing can't get a photo right!
Back to the new 3 year deal between WSL/Vic Govt/ Surf coast shire...will be interesting to see how bad the WSL have again fucked the Vic Govt and and SCS.....the good news is .....there will be a fight now to stop the comp going to Winki....getting our gate money back for the community........to be cont'd!

D-Rex's picture
D-Rex's picture
D-Rex Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 9:00am

That's not Bells - looks like Shippies to me. Effing Starkie!

lost's picture
lost's picture
lost Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 9:44am

Not bells cause I can't see 100 surfers

D-Rex's picture
D-Rex's picture
D-Rex Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 8:31am

Elo must be delighted that Starkie's now getting some of the abuse that is normally reserved for him. Seriously...

belly's picture
belly's picture
belly Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 8:48am

My takeaway is Vic govt can support the tennis but not the surfing.

NDC's picture
NDC's picture
NDC Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 9:20am

Yup...
And now they’re continuing to run a tennis comp with significant crowds and simultaneously it’s looking like a worrying new cluster emerging out of the airport holiday inn - complete with more virulent UK (or is it South African?) strain.

As a NSWelshy I feel for the victorians and fear what several hundred pro surfers and assorted hangers on might introduce to our state - happy to watch pro surfing - but stay away for 2021 please and let’s see how we’re placed in 2022

ryder's picture
ryder's picture
ryder Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 8:53am

12 months into COVID and the WSL has got to be the most unorganised rabble in the whole of world sport. For a sport that is supposed to be about fresh air and all that jazz, the WSL are just a fucking embarrassment.

A tennis grand slam in Melbourne in indoor arena's but the WSL can't secure a contest outdoors down the road.

Time for a a rebel tour...

carpetman's picture
carpetman's picture
carpetman Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 9:25am

That can only mean one thing... Pumping Easter surf.

Some light at the end of the tunnel.

mpeachy's picture
mpeachy's picture
mpeachy Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 9:38am

Must be tough planning an international tour right now.

Hope they get some waves in Newy.

hoody's picture
hoody's picture
hoody Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 9:48am

"Tyler Wright is leading the women's rankings and Gabe Medina is second so it was all set to be a doozy for us 40 years after the Big Bells Swell of Easter 1981."

Marketing genius, equality in sport.
Gabe stooping to new lows to ensure he wins the world title(his Dads idea)
Sentence taken out of context.

Tough choice but number two is my fave.

frog's picture
frog's picture
frog Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 10:57am

"Tyler Wright is leading the women's rankings and Gabe Medina is second" - so Gabe is transitioning or has "they" - note use of gender neutral pronoun - had the operation?

A press release schmozzle by the wozzle.

velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 11:49am

Now you can burn her.

memlasurf's picture
memlasurf's picture
memlasurf Saturday, 13 Feb 2021 at 8:57am

Excellent pick up.

dr-surf's picture
dr-surf's picture
dr-surf Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 10:10am

Congratulations to WSL for getting Newcastle Onboard, clearly a Great Result. Vic has been less than useless. WA? I’d like to see that and QLD is the best Hope of Procrastinating before giving it a Green Light. Navigating this Nightmare is not easy.

bbbird's picture
bbbird's picture
bbbird Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 10:13am

The best of three waves video surf comp was great for the viewers...less talkfest, pure surf. This virtual surf comp 'model' may be 'monetised' by surf sponsors, bypasing the WSL circus until they can adapt?

Stark conspiracy

views from the cockpit's picture
views from the cockpit's picture
views from the ... Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 10:28am

Kudos to all those who got past the first paragraph!
ZZZZZZZZZZZZ!!!

3vickers's picture
3vickers's picture
3vickers Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 10:39am

i'm really disappointed in this.
it's a great event to watch & attend, and no matter how much spin they put on it I can't help but feel it's been poorly managed at a gov't & wsl level.

….that said, I don't want to be too harsh on the wsl - they provide a lot of enjoyment in my life and I mostly think they do fantastic job.

fitzroy-21's picture
fitzroy-21's picture
fitzroy-21 Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 10:52am

What's stopping RC from running a local (Australia wide) invitational only now? Even invite some of the Aussie CT guys, past and present.

Run it at the same time, permits are obviously already in place, televise it and shove it up WSL and Starkys nose. Bet it would get more viewing.

Surfalot67's picture
Surfalot67's picture
Surfalot67 Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 12:33pm

Fuck yeah Fitz. Bring back the Skins - that was sick

Blake87's picture
Blake87's picture
Blake87 Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 9:19pm

No can do. No surfers who compete under the WSL can compete in any other competition without the WSLs approval. Bound by contract..... Fuckers....

(I'm pretty sure of this but someone could confirm)

Stok's picture
Stok's picture
Stok Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 11:07am

Oh well.

As much as I enjoyto see pro-surfing, I generally can't understand the desperate need for international sporting events at the moment.

For example, how would you feel if you, or your loved ones were stuck overseas due to flight caps only to see the wozzle circus roll into town taking your places? Also - how much worse would you feel if you didn't know anything about surfing!

It's bad enough watching the tennis fiasco.

Sporting professionals and those associated with sporting events shouldn't be given preferential treatment.

velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 11:56am

I understand it from a 'bread and circuses' perspective. No shortage of the 'bread' being printed, and the circuses give people that escape for a short while so the reality doesn't dawn on them. Meanwhile, global pandemic

Oliviavos's picture
Oliviavos's picture
Oliviavos Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 11:12am

Corporate gets its hands on surfing like it does everything else and fucks it . No feel around and no thankyou!!! We need pro surfers getting busted for drug smuggling etc.. to get our lifestyle back. Let Bells run like the old days. Booze, drugs all night parties etc..,., not the sterile boring shit it's become.

freeride76's picture
freeride76's picture
freeride76 Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 11:18am

From having a front row seat to how the Lennox fiasco played out, it's almost unbelievable how amateurish this whole show is.

The communications strategy between stakeholders is completely bush league.

ie non existent.

this is a face saving announcement but if it's anything like up here there's head shaking going on all over the place.

bonza's picture
bonza's picture
bonza Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 11:39am

Sean Doherty & Gary Dunne on the conversation hour with Richelle Hunt and Warwick Long right now

bluediamond's picture
bluediamond's picture
bluediamond Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 12:11pm

4days at Newcastle is less likely to score pumping waves than Bells, and two years in a row without her is hard to take....but there is the off chance Newy could turn into this!! Imagine that! Even just for a few hours, it would be pretty memorable. Fingers crossed Bells turns up in spirit for some reverse Bells. Yew!

tango's picture
tango's picture
tango Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 9:12pm

Thanks bd, that was the best thing I've watched in ages....pumpin! No pros, no wankers getting changed or making a cuppa, and even a real band.

frog's picture
frog's picture
frog Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 12:53pm

Wozzle need to build the mother of all wave pools that can produce multi-variable 6 - 8 foot Kirra and chopes type waves at the press of a switch with randomness and weirdo warbles and surprise sections thrown in. Make it like running of the bulls so the pros are paddling in with eyes wide with fear and no routine possible as they face the music. Like a wild day at big Burleigh.

Done right and it would be the 8th Wonder of the surfing world and blow everyone's minds to see on video or close up in the stands for year's to come. Like sitting in the channel at Chopes watching.

I know it would need to be a huge pool with major engineering solutions to handle the volume of water, currents, eddies and overflows etc.

A big undertaking but sooooooooooo much simpler than the chaos and hassles of the current world tour. Build it once (right) it is done.

memlasurf's picture
memlasurf's picture
memlasurf Saturday, 13 Feb 2021 at 9:00am

The physics prohibits it apparently.

Solitude's picture
Solitude's picture
Solitude Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 1:12pm

Quite presumptive stating that they have ‘secured the Rip Curl Pro at Bells for the next three years’

.......anyone reckon the WSL will be around and kicking by then?

angatta cool's picture
angatta cool's picture
angatta cool Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 1:39pm

Vicco is a germpit.
Just dirty all over.
Run by a grub

peabo's picture
peabo's picture
peabo Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 2:57pm

get fucked

memlasurf's picture
memlasurf's picture
memlasurf Saturday, 13 Feb 2021 at 9:01am

Ha, ha stir it up.

Bob Sacamano's picture
Bob Sacamano's picture
Bob Sacamano Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 2:42pm

Obviously Tennis Australia must have good technique and cup the balls to get their circus in. Starky and the wozzle just aren't willing to go that extra mile too get the job done. Amateur hour all over again.

Spuddups's picture
Spuddups's picture
Spuddups Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 3:15pm

There's a lot of hate aimed at the WSL round here at the moment; and for good reason, they're producing a product that is antagonistic to the average recreational surfer in so many ways. They are wildly out of touch. I for one would be quite happy to see the whole thing crash and burn, to possibly be replaced with something more aligned with what core surfers actually want to see. Forget about trying to take the thing mainstream; it's a fool's errand.

Now that I've nailed my colours firmly to the mast here's a thought for you all:
Is a small part of the hate directed at the WSL round here related to the relatively poor performance of Australian surfers on the tour over the last ten years or so? I mean from what I gather the tour is pretty popular in Brazil at the moment. Makes no difference to me since I'm from NZ and our country doesn't seem to produce many top class pro surfers, so I don't have a lot of skin in the game as it were. Just wondering what you guys' thoughts are on the matter.

Solitude's picture
Solitude's picture
Solitude Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 4:50pm

NZ has nailed it, kept under the radar just nicely.

Spuddups's picture
Spuddups's picture
Spuddups Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 7:03pm

It's all the sheep shagging you see. Not a lot time for much else.

gearoid's picture
gearoid's picture
gearoid Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 6:42pm

I don't mind watching good surfers ripping in nice waves to kill a bit of time, but it isn't something I can't live without.

What core surfers want to see is themselves, paddling into nice waves and minimal fucksticks with which to share them.

I can't see any how any professional body that can provide that.

Spuddups's picture
Spuddups's picture
Spuddups Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 7:04pm

That's pretty much where I'm at aye.

freeride76's picture
freeride76's picture
freeride76 Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 4:38pm

might be something to that Spuddup.

one thing I've noticed in the last decade is less Aussie fans at Snapper and more Brazilian/euros.

it's very noticeable that the Aussie surf fan is either disinterested or becoming completely overwhelmed by other surf nations.

memlasurf's picture
memlasurf's picture
memlasurf Saturday, 13 Feb 2021 at 9:11am

Or underwhelmed by the spectacle? I for one get more excited by some of the clips sent in by whoever of surfing really different and often dangerous waves. JJF at that gigantic left in Hawaii, crazy jaws and Mavericks, some of Danes stuff, the youngest Ho, Chipper Wilson, some entertainment in that lot and no Joe Turpel droning on in the background. Some entertainment there and finish it off with Ben Gravy and Job.

Blowin's picture
Blowin's picture
Blowin Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 6:15pm

My take has zero to do with Aussie numbers in the CT and everything to do with the bracket creep of the WSL’s footprint into the world of surfing.

Jakes , Lennox or Gnaraloo .......Fark off.

The blithe and forced attempted intrusion into places where they’re not welcome burns every single positive they gain from the goodwill bought by the performances of charismatic athletes.

gearoid's picture
gearoid's picture
gearoid Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 6:44pm

One less feeding frenzy for the bloated ticks that feed on the spirit and soul of surfing (TM).
Stoked!

upnorth's picture
upnorth's picture
upnorth Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 8:03pm

For sure if there were more Aussies in the CT and someone along the lines of Mick or Parko hovering around 1st and in with a shot, there would be more interest from Aussie fans. Someone to get behind, wave the flag etc. Mikey Wright can pull a crowd and the picture might change in a few years but for now its about watching non Aussies fight it out, for the men at least. Yeah the WSL has pissed people off with its cack handed approach but if Aussies had more skin in the game I think the mood among 'surf fans' would be different.

ryder's picture
ryder's picture
ryder Monday, 15 Feb 2021 at 9:11am

I think Mikey Wright will stick around in the WSL for about as long as Dane Reynolds did.

frog's picture
frog's picture
frog Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 8:35pm

Weeeeeez eeezzz bored wid eeeeet all mr ziffy........

Except for occasional pumping swells or freaky big days.

And if the core are bored there is no hope.

ringmaster's picture
ringmaster's picture
ringmaster Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 8:40pm

Surfing Vic cares about YOU!

tango's picture
tango's picture
tango Friday, 12 Feb 2021 at 9:36pm

My 10c worth is that I reckon we all like seeing crazy good surfing, but it's pretty obvious that comps don't produce it - free surfing does. With a few notable exceptions, comps generally produce formulaic and predictable surfing aimed at pleasing the judges and getting points. Have a listen to Josh Kerr in his "weird little boards" clip. He's surfing better on those boards IMO than he did on the tour. And when it comes to speed and flow, blokes like Bryce Young and Asher Pacey leave most of the pros in the dust. Then there's Dane, who can't do the comp thing but we all know he's about the most radical surfer on a thruster...probably ever.

Comps provide a point of organisation which is something of an anachronism for the whole concept of surfing. In my old town the annual comp is taken pretty seriously by the crew, but the main game is everyone hanging together for a couple of days and the presso night party. You have to be a bit more creative to advertise to sell more stuff if everyone's freesurfing, though. It must also be tempting if you were in the position of being good enough to think that you could actually surf for a living. But should surfing be sold just so that people can make a living from professionalising it?

I guess the problem is that while I could watch Rasta surf all day, there's no way I want to watch the majority of the tour who I have trouble telling apart.

Solitude's picture
Solitude's picture
Solitude Saturday, 13 Feb 2021 at 6:43am

I struggle to understand how freesurfers make money or how companies can afford it?

I agree with your sentiments above about who you’d rather watch, but it’s not often you see much out there from Bryce, Rasta and co. I mean would they be getting enough to live off?

Bloody nice existence if you can wrangle it.

My guess is that in the past 12 months there’d be ALOT of ‘pro’ surfers considering what else they might do with their lives.

memlasurf's picture
memlasurf's picture
memlasurf Saturday, 13 Feb 2021 at 9:15am

Yep time to get a trade or go back to school. Gabe will be fine though.

frog's picture
frog's picture
frog Saturday, 13 Feb 2021 at 10:24am

The hot new sort of pro surfers are now "influencers". They post lots of piccies on Instagram of themselves on the toilet holding the packet of poop paper or zit cream with brand carefully showing in clear view and then go and beg for money for their trouble from the manufacturers citing all their 150 followers as proof of their marketing power .............. but live mostly off mum and dad.

Sounds great in the job interview as they explain the multi year gap since leaving school.

Not Gabe of course - he makes big $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$ from his 'influencer" role due to all those brazzo fans. They all use the same loo paper as Gabe to be just like him.

Barrel Daithwaite's picture
Barrel Daithwaite's picture
Barrel Daithwaite Saturday, 13 Feb 2021 at 2:03pm

I know I’m not the first to suggested something like this. But there is a huge opportunity to do something truly special this year.

Imagine instead of flying surfers all around the world they hire a whole island in the ments for a month. Hire 10 boats and do something different. Obviously it would be to hard to livestream from such a location but it would be awesome if for example they surfed 6 waves, 3 lefts, 3 rights. Perhaps man on man knock out from the get go no redemption. At each wave. Points accumulated all the way through.

Then when it’s all wrapped up sell it as 6 1.5 hour long produced episodes with a winner crowned at the end. I’d pay for something like that.

san Guine's picture
san Guine's picture
san Guine Sunday, 14 Feb 2021 at 10:10am

Nice Spoonerism, Barrel

Spuddups's picture
Spuddups's picture
Spuddups Monday, 15 Feb 2021 at 8:12am

Ronnie Barker would be pleased.

D-Rex's picture
D-Rex's picture
D-Rex Saturday, 13 Feb 2021 at 2:30pm

Here's an idea. Why not let swellnet run competitive surfing in Aus? With so many experts here it would be the envy of the surfing world. Instead of pros we could have contributors matched against one another - who wouldn't pay top dollar to see Indo v Facto, Blowin v Vic Local, D-Rex v Stu? I can't see how it could possibly not win over the hearts and minds of all, surfers and non-surfers alike.

Jnrjep's picture
Jnrjep's picture
Jnrjep Saturday, 13 Feb 2021 at 3:22pm

Ha ha ,too right

Rabbits68's picture
Rabbits68's picture
Rabbits68 Saturday, 13 Feb 2021 at 3:23pm

Great idea! In fact, SN could put you in charge of organising & scheduling the Welcome to Country prior to every event!

"I can't see how it could possibly not win over the hearts and minds of all, surfers and non-surfers alike."

D-Rex's picture
D-Rex's picture
D-Rex Sunday, 14 Feb 2021 at 8:48am

Haha! Yeah, I'd be perfect for that role.

Spuddups's picture
Spuddups's picture
Spuddups Monday, 15 Feb 2021 at 8:13am

Let's shut down the super bank for a month so we can run our comp.

Robo's picture
Robo's picture
Robo Saturday, 13 Feb 2021 at 6:16pm

You will all watch it though lol

Sheep go to heaven's picture
Sheep go to heaven's picture
Sheep go to heaven Sunday, 14 Feb 2021 at 8:32am

Pro Surfing or competitive surfing of any kind has one really basic problem , and its a huge one - Its the opposite of all other sports, - cricket, golf , tennis etc were all created around keeping score and a winner at the end ( try having a hit of tennis without keeping a score or a round of golf without adding up how many shots you had per hole . BUT surfing nah ,.... how many of us go for a surf and flick off a wave and go "yeah 6.5 on that one" ? So its trying to fit a square peg into a round hole . Surfing existed long before competitive surfing , most other sports were designed specifically around competition ( apart from the old horizontal folk dancing : ) So surfing as we know it will continue to thrive without the competitive thing whereas most other sports would struggle to maintain relevance .

billythekid's picture
billythekid's picture
billythekid Sunday, 14 Feb 2021 at 11:18am

Awesome - no Rip Curl Pro shutting down Bells over Easter - good riddance and don't come back.

truebluebasher's picture
truebluebasher's picture
truebluebasher Tuesday, 16 Mar 2021 at 2:17pm

Surfing Australia's resurrected Easter Rebel Tour

Oz Leg (Stop 1)
15th March RipCurl Grom Search >Transferred from Bells Curtain Raiser to Urbnsurf [ The Point ]
https://surfingvic.com/ellie-harrison-and-lennix-smith-crowned-rip-curl-...

Oz Leg (Stop 2)
27th-30th March -Victorian Open Surf Off (Former Philip Island CS ) > Cape Wollamai - Finals Urbnsurf [ The Point ]
https://surfingvic.com/2021-victorian-open-series-format-to-change-due-t...
Entry Forms for the crew must be lodged by 12th March
https://surfingaustralia.azolve.com/workbench/public/Events?ref=97C957F1...
Bonus swellnet Tulla Timetable
https://www.swellnet.com/news/reels/2021/02/01/watch-summer-in-tulla#com...

Oz Leg (Stop 3)
3rd April - Easter Sat - Bells Bolt Blowers Invitational
https://surfingvic.com/surfing-victoria-to-host-bolt-blowers-invitationa...

Oz Leg (Stop 4)
16th April - Surf Aid Cup ~ Tulla Point
https://surfaid.org/surfaidcup

Oz Leg (Stop 5)
1-3rd May - Gold Coast Open
https://surfingqueensland.com.au/pro-surfing-returns-to-queensland-with-...
Entry Forms for the crew must be lodged by 27th April
https://surfingaustralia.azolve.com/workbench/public/events?ref=DADA86BC...

Oz Leg (Stop 6)
7th May - Bondi Surf Aid Cup
https://surfaid.org/bondi2021

Of course ya get a Lucky 7...
Mystery Red Bull Shipsterns Bluff Cape Fear ( As the Easter Basket Filler / Squasher / Squisher? )
https://www.swellnet.com/news/swellnet-dispatch/2021/03/03/red-bull-cape...

More about Oz rebel Tour...
https://www.swellnet.com/news/swellnet-dispatch/2019/11/08/surfing-queen...