The World Surf League (WSL) North America Junior Series makes its way back to Newport Beach, CA for the first time since 2010 with the RVCA Pro Junior presented by Jack's Surfboards. 1,000 points are on the line as some of the top talents under the age of 20 showcase their skills at the 56th Street Jetty. The event will run alongside the City of Newport Beach Surfing Championships for a jam packed weekend of surfing competition.
The contest window runs September 25 - 27 and is expected to receive fun two-to-three foot swell on opening day. Coming into this event after a big win at the Fins Pro Junior in Belmar, NJ, Parker Coffin (USA) moved into second place on the North America rankings and now finds himself back on his home coast.
"It felt great to get a win and was the first time in a while that I felt like I was in rhythm with the ocean and my boards so I'm excited to hopefully keep that good feeling going," Coffin said. "Being on the west coast is amazing. I love being able to have my family come down for support and have it feel closer to home. I also really enjoy having my car - random but I always feel more prepared with it around."
Coffin is no stranger to Newport, living in Santa Barbara, and is looking forward to his return after some time away from the area. Despite his time away, Coffin knows what's required of him to earn back-to-back wins.
"It feels like I've been running around the streets of Newport for a long time," Coffin said. "In recent years I haven't been there as much but I used to spend pretty much all summer with either John Oda or Andrew Doheny - so in a way it kind of feels like a second home for me. I have competed there on and off since I was about 9-years-old so I definitely feel like I know what to expect. Newport really just comes down to whoever is on the best waves so that will just be my game plan."
Mike Brophy, Surf Team Manager at RVCA, is excited for the opportunity to get the RVCA name behind a Pro Junior event. The company's background goes back to founder Pat Tenore's garage back in 2001, and now has its eyes set on giving back to the upcoming generation of surfers in 2015.
"We wanted to start getting involved with the youth in surfing," Brophy said. "When the opportunity presented itself in our backyard, we knew this was the time to get involved. There are so many deep Newport roots at 54th Street and we were honored to sponsor the event. RVCA was started in Costa Mesa, so Newport Beach has always been our sanctuary."
Contest Director Darren Brilhart has been working at the Newport Beach Surfing Championships all of its 27 illustrious years. Seeing past champions such as Kolohe Andino win in the Elementary and Middle School divisions, to Andy Irons winning the event as a (then ASP) 4-Star, Brilhart couldn't be more excited to get things going.
"We're in the 27th year of the Championships and it's great to bring back the WSL component again," Brilhart said. "I've gained all my experience running contests as director from this event and it's been amazing to see it grow - as well as the talent that's come through. It's incredible to see RVCA come on board for the first time, and show their support for the kids. I'm super thrilled to see this event still running after all these years- and with the WSL getting back on the action it'll be another great year."
A 7:30 a.m. call will determine an 8 a.m. start for the RVCA Pro Junior presented by Jack's Surfboards on Friday, September 25th. Stay tuned to www.worldsurfleague.com for all the updates from the water at the RVCA Pro Jr.