O’Neill launches the Cold Water Classic Series 2009
In 2009 we will experience the most northern, the most southern, the wildest, the coldest and the most classic surf contest on the planet - the Cold Water Classic Series 2009.
Five events exploring the edges of the world over four continents, five challenging, quality waves all in extreme and not to mention cold conditions and five 6-star World Qualifying Series (WQS) events in rugged and unique locations in the depths of nature.
Building on the iconic event in Santa Cruz, and the much lauded Highland Open in Scotland, O’Neill has added events in Tasmania, South Africa and Canada to make the O’Neill Cold Water Classic Series a huge and much welcomed addition to the world of surfing.
“We wanted to provide a unique and challenging experience for the world’s best surfers,” says O’Neill’s Global Event Manager, Bernhard Ritzer. “The Cold Water Classic series is the perfect extension of our existing events – it remains true to our spirit of innovation and adventure, pushing the boundaries, and exploring the limits. The CWC Series events will take us to incredible and unique locations around the world, where we will let the cold know that we’re not afraid.”
Kicking off in March 2009, the Series will first travel to Tasmania for the most Southern event within professional surfing. The island state 240km off mainland Australia boasts big powerful surf and a variety of world class reef and beach breaks in a rugged and challenging environment, with an average water temperature of 13 degrees in March.
“Tasmania is pretty much as wild as it gets,” says Australian WQS competitor Jarrad Howse. “It offers the more adventurous a surfing experience like no other in Australia. I love the reefs in Tassie - usually really hollow, and magnets for any swell. It’s a cold, rugged, beautiful place that deserves an event.”
In May, the CWC Series will head to Scotland for the popular Highland Open event, providing world class reef breaks in the wilderness of the Scottish Highlands at Thurso East and Brims Ness.
Cape Town will host the third event on the CWC Series in June. With powerful swells sweeping into the peninsula, the event will no doubt take full advantage of the mobile format of each of the events on the Series in order to find the optimum waves available.
The coldest surf contest on the planet follows as the CWC Series heads up to Nova Scotia in Canada in October. This will be the first professional ASP surf event ever held in Canada. Known more for its snow than its surf, Canada’s wild and rugged shoreline actually offers a huge variety of pointbreaks, reefs and beachbreaks that can work on a wide combination of winds and swells. Fog, snow, freezing temperatures and ice cold water add to the extremity of this event.
The Cold Water Classic Series will end up at the iconic Cold Water Classic event in Santa Cruz in November – Northern California’s premier professional surfing event since 1987. Now upgraded to a 6-Star WQS event, the Nor Cal event will be where the 2009 CWC Champion will be crowned.
ASP International CEO, Brodie Carr believes the introduction of the Cold Water Classic Series will have a significant and positive impact on the WQS; “The O’Neill Cold Water Classic Series represents an exciting and unique addition to the ASP World Tour Calendar. The established events of Scotland and Santa Cruz are already hugely popular with the surfers and the addition of the high rated events in Canada, Tasmania and South Africa really broadens and supports not only this series, but the WQS as a whole.”
The CWC Series will be officially launched during the Cold Water Classic event from 21-26 October 2008 in Santa Cruz, California.
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Chris Davidson (AUS), 31, won the prestigious Rip Curl Pro in clean three foot waves at Les Bourdaines, main venue of the 2008 edition.