For some, the news of surfing becoming an Olympic sport in 2020 was big news. But for Fernando Aguerre, it was the result of decades of work to bring the sport he loved to the global competitive stage.
As the head of the International Surfing Association (ISA), Aguerre has been traversing the world as an ambassador, impresario and deal-maker of surf. In his successful agreement with the International Olympic Committee (IOC), surfers who compete in the 2020 Games will qualify through both the WSL Championship Tour and ISA rankings. That means, in part, that surfing will be truly global in scope when the time comes to compete.
Sunday, during the closing ceremony of the Founders' Cup of Surfing in Lemoore, Calif., the WSL honored Aguerre and his accomplishments. Afterward, he reflected on what the Surf Ranch wave means for surfing, and the future.
"It was a great event," he said. "It was a new aspect of surfing that we didn't have before. It's like you found a new sandwich that you like. You always had the same sandwich, now you have a new sandwich. It's good to spread the sandwich tastes."
The next event at the WSL's wave in Lemoore is the Surf Ranch Open, September 6 - 9.