The four-event series will see three QS 1000 rated events (Maroubra, Great Lakes and Port Stephens) and one men’s and women’s QS 3000 (Central Coast). The Vissla Central Coast Pro will also comprise of the women’s Sisstrevolution Central Coast Pro division.
Current WSL Championship Tour surfers Ryan Callinan, Julian Wilson, Ethan Ewing, Adrian Buchan, Owen Wright, Sally Fitzgibbons, Macy Callaghan, Keely Andrew and Isabella Nichols are currently all slated to compete in the event.
In 2020, the WSL revealed a new format for 2021, which included creating distinct seasons between the QS (the regionalised development tier), the Challenger Series (the global battleground for Championship Tour qualification) and the Championship Tour (the world’s best surfers competing for the World Title).
The new tour structure will provide a more streamlined and affordable career pathway for WSL athletes by allowing up-and-coming surfers to develop closer to home without financially over-leveraging themselves. Athletes will compete on their regional QS tour in hopes of qualifying for the Challenger Series (CS), and ultimately the Championship Tour, which will reduce the economic pressure on surfers and their sponsors, as well as provide increased opportunities to celebrate local stars.
The QS will run from January through to July 2021 and determine who has qualified for the CS, which will run from August through to December 2021. Each region will have an allocation of surfers that can qualify for the CS through their regional tour. Athletes will be able to roll over points from 2020 QS events into the current season. Australia/Oceania will receive an allocation of ten men’s and eight women’s spots onto the Challenger Series based on the regional QS rankings.
Parliamentary Secretary for the Central Coast and Member for Terrigal Adam Crouch is elated to see a world-class event return to the region.
“This QS 3000 ranked event provides an even greater opportunity for professional surfers to earn points and is the only event of its kind in Australia,” Mr Crouch said. “With hundreds of competitors and spectators expected to descend on Avoca, this six-day event will boost our local businesses, accommodation, restaurants and retail following what has been a really difficult 2020.”
Central Coast Council Administrator, Mr Dick Persson AM said the Central Coast is thrilled to be one of the host locations for this prestigious series.
“These are world-class events and I encourage locals and visitors to head to Avoca Beach, and all of the host locations, to witness these incredible athletes in action in a beautiful setting,” Mr Persson said.
Having grown up surfing on the Central Coast, but now residing on the Gold Coast, World Championship Tour surfer Macy Callaghan is excited to return to her local region to compete for the first time in close to five years.
“I can’t wait to return to the region where I grew up surfing to compete in this event,” said Callaghan. “The Vissla NSW Pro Surf Series played a huge part in helping me to qualify for the Championship Tour and I’m super excited to be back competing on one of the beaches I grew up surfing throughout my childhood.”
Surfing NSW CEO Luke Madden thinks that the Vissla Central Coast Pro and the entire Vissla NSW Pro Surf Series has proven itself as one of the premier competitive surfing legs anywhere in the world.
“The Vissla NSW Pro Surf Series has given multiple CT surfers the added momentum to get their campaigns off to a flying start at the beginning of the year,” said Madden. “Over the years we’ve seen people like Morgan Cibilic, Ethan Ewing, Macy Callaghan, Wade Carmichael and even internationals like Yago Dora compete in this leg of QS events and we can’t wait to see the 2021 series finish with a bang on the Central Coast.”
WSL Asia Pacific Tour Manager Will Hayden-Smith shared Madden’s anticipation at seeing who would claim the top positions on the QS rankings following the Vissla Central Coast Pro.
“Finishing this string of QS events with a 3000 is really exciting,” Hayden-Smith said. ” Doing well at a 3000 can go a long way to cementing yourself a spot on the Challenger Series which is the main aim for all of the competitors. The other exciting aspect of this event is the number of elite Championship Tour competitors that have entered and will use the event as a warmup to the Aussie CT leg. Some of surfing’s biggest names will descend on Avoca which is not only a great opportunity for the spectators but the young up and coming competitors who may get the opportunity to surf against one of their heroes.”
The Vissla Central Coast Pro, stop 4 on the 2021 Australian Qualifying Series leg will run from February 21 to 23. Head to www.worldsurfleague.com or the free WSL App for more information and to watch the event LIVE.
2021 Vissla NSW Pro Surf Series Event Schedule
Event 1: Great Lakes Pro, Boomerang Beach, Tuesday 16 – Friday 19 February 2021.
Event 2: Port Stephens Pro, Birubi Beach, Sunday 21 – Tuesday 23 February 2021.
Event 3: Mad Mex Maroubra Pro, Maroubra Beach, Friday 26 – Sunday 28 February 2021.
Event 4: Vissla Central Coast Pro, Avoca Beach, Tuesday 2 – Sunday 7 March 2021.
The 2021 Vissla NSW Pro Surf Series will be proudly supported by the NSW Government through its tourism and major events agency, Destination NSW. The series will also be proudly supported by Vissla, Randwick City Council, Central Coast Council, Mid Coast Council, Port Stephens Council, Mad Mex, Sisstrevolution, Middle Rock Holiday Park, Moby’s Beachside Retreat, Avoca Beach Hotel, WSL and Surfing NSW.
About the WSL
Established in 1976, the World Surf League (WSL) is the home of the world’s best surfing.
A global sports, media and entertainment company, the WSL oversees international tours and competitions, a studios division creating over 500+ hours of live and on-demand content, and via affiliate WaveCo, the home of the world’s largest high performance, human-made wave. Headquartered in Santa Monica, California, the WSL has regional offices in North America, Latin America, Asia Pacific, and EMEA.
The WSL annually crowns the men’s and women’s surfing World Champions. The global Tours and Competition division oversees and operates more than 180 global contests each year across the Championship Tour, the development tiers, including the Challenger, Qualifying and Junior Series, as well as longboard and big wave properties.
Launched in 2019, WSL Studios is an independent producer of unscripted television projects, including documentaries and series, which provide unprecedented access to athletes, events, and locations around the world. WSL events and content are distributed on linear television in over 743M+ homes worldwide and across digital and social media platforms around the world, including WorldSurfLeague.com.
WaveCo includes the Surf Ranch Lemoore facility and the utilizing and licensing of the Kelly Slater Wave System.
The WSL is dedicated to changing the world through the inspirational power of surfing by creating authentic events, experiences, and storytelling to inspire a growing, global community to live with purpose, originality, and stoke.
For more information, please visit WorldSurfLeague.com.