COOLANGATTA, Australia (Thursday, November 13, 2008) - The Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) International today released its 2009 events calendar. Dates and locations for the ASP World Tour, ASP Women's World Tour, ASP World Qualifying Series (WQS), ASP Pro Junior and ASP World Longboard events are now posted on www.aspworldtour.com.
Notable changes to the ASP's premier tour - the ASP World Tour - include date changes for the Brazilian leg of the tour and the absence of Fiji from the calendar. In 2009, the world's Top 45 male surfers will count eight results from 10 events.
The Hang Loose Santa Catarina Pro will now be held from June 27 to July 5 when conditions in Imbituba, Brazil are historically superior to those on offer in November. From Brazil, the ASP World Tour will head due east to Jeffreys Bay, South Africa.
"Moving the Hang Loose Santa Catarina Pro to mid-year was a logical transition," ASP President Wayne "Rabbit" Bartholomew said. "Having the two most far-flung venues, Imbituba and JBay, back-to-back is not only an economically sound measure, but it tweaks the geographic synchronicity of the ASP World Tour in the right direction. The other plus is that shifting Brazil into the prime-wave window is in keeping with Dream Tour philosophy."
The 2009 ASP Women's World Tour will again boast eight events, with the Top 17 counting six of eight results toward their year-end totals. The only change to date for the world's best female surfers comes in the form of a combined men's and women's Rip Curl Search contest replacing the stand-alone Rip Curl Pro Mademoiselle.
The men's ASP WQS heralds the most exciting additions on the ASP landscape for '09. The most notable of several new and upgraded events is O'Neill's expansion of their Coldwater Classic series. O'Neill has added events in Tasmania, Australia Cape Town, South Africa and Canada to their existing Scotland and Santa Cruz contests. All five events carry a 6-Star or 6-Star Prime rating. The 6.0 Lowers Pro at Lower Trestles, California has also been upgraded from a 4-Star to a 6-Star Prime event.
"2009 sees the final phase in of the ASP WQS plan that began in 2005," Bartholomew said. "With the establishment of a solid raft of 6-Star Primes, and the bonus points that accompany them, the qualifying process will be ratcheted up as the top Dream Tour aspirants surf it our at quality locations for meaningful points."
Visit www.aspworldtour.com/2008/2009schedule to see the 2009 ASP World Tour calendar in its entirety.
For more information, log onto www.aspworldtour.com