Coolangatta, QLD / AUS (Monday, February 25, 2019) - The World Surf League (WSL) is proud to announce that its partnership with Tourism Western Australia has been extended until at least 2021 after a new agreement was signed between the two organizations.
The deal confirms that the Margaret River Pro Championship Tour (CT) event will continue for another two years, with a further option for extension, and play a pivotal role in the crowning of the WSL World Champions.
"Margaret River is a venue that has been challenging the world's best surfers since 1985 and WSL is thrilled that we are continuing our partnership with Tourism Western Australia," said WSL CEO Sophie Goldschmidt. "The beautiful coastline in Western Australia never fails to deliver one of the most memorable events on tour. The anticipation is high and we can't wait to get back to Margaret River this May and watch our athletes continue to break performance barriers in the epic Western Australian surf."
After finishing runner-up in the 2018 WSL Championship Tour, Australian title hopeful Julian Wilson is intent on making 2019 his year. Wilson's well-rounded approach is suited to the ever-changing waves in Western Australia and even saw him finish second at the event in 2016. Wilson regularly travels to the Margaret River region to surf for film projects and is over the moon that one of his favourite spots on tour will remain on the schedule for the foreseeable future.
"Western Australia is absolutely beautiful," Wilson said. "It's by far one of my favourite stops on tour and I'm very happy about the commitment to retain a tour stop there for the years to come. The locals are very welcoming and some of the nicest people you'll ever meet, I always love my time In Western Australia and the Margaret River region in particular."
Echoing Wilson's sentiment was fellow Australian title hopeful Owen Wright, who has put on some of the most memorable performances of his career at the Margaret River Pro.
"I'm so stoked we'll be heading back to Margaret River for at least the next three years," Wright said. "I've had so many good waves and great memories over there and with all of the great food and wine in the region, it is definitely my favourite place to take my family on tour. Out of all of the places we go on tour Margaret River has the most powerful waves -- I love it and can't wait to get back."
Three-time WSL World Champion Carissa Moore (HAW) is stoked with the news that the event will continue until at least 2021. Having previously won the event twice, it's safe to say Moore is extremely comfortable in the powerful Margaret River waves.
"I really love Margaret River so I'm so excited that we will be going back there for the next few years," Moore said. "It's super raw and all about the elements and you and the ocean which I love. It's a challenging wave which is good because to be the world champion you need to be the best in all conditions. It can be big or small, powerful and windy and it can definitely put you outside of your comfort zone which brings out the best in all of the competitors. I have a good Western Australian family that I stay with so I'm excited to get back and stay with them."
Western Australian Tourism Minister Paul Papalia said the State Government, through Tourism WA, was pleased to have secured the Margaret River Pro as a Championship Tour event until at least 2021.
"Margaret River is one of Western Australia's key tourist destinations," Papalia said. "Known around the world for magnificent surf, its premium food and wine and its stunning natural assets, including majestic forests and caves. The Margaret River Pro not only injects money and creates jobs for the local economy, but it gives us the opportunity to showcase the region and the State to a global audience. The event attracts thousands of visitors to the region including competitors, officials and spectators who travel to Margaret River to watch the action."
The Margaret River Pro, Stop No. 4 on the 2019 Championship Tour, gets underway on May 29 and the competitive window runs until June 9.