Momentum fixture and former movie star takes reigns of tour events…
You must give me a moment to catch my breath and wipe the sheen of sweat from my body. My favourite surfer of all time, the nineties superstar Pat O’Connell, who is so kind he can absorb any evil and whom you want to cover in lipstick marks and who has wrinkles on his face like cat whiskers, has been appointed WSL Commissioner, although the job title is now WSL role of SVP, Tours & Head of Competition.
Pat, now forty seven, starred in the Endless Summer sequel in 1994, qualified for the tour in 1995 and retired in 2004, his best rating an eleventh place in 1998. He was also a regular in Taylor Steele’s Momentum series.
“I want to be everybody’s friend,” Pat told Surfer in ’98. “I suppose that’s a character flaw in pro surfing.”
The WSL’s just-as-adorable Chloe Kojima emailed,
Commissioner Kieren Perrow is stepping down to take on a supporting role at the WSL, which will leverage his decades of experience in evolving and championing the technical aspects of the sport.
“I’ve been a part of professional surfing my entire life, and I never imagined it would get to the level it’s at today,” Perrow said. “To be able to live out my dream on tour as a competitor, while also being a surfer rep and board member, was a massive high point in my career. However, getting to transition into my role as Commissioner and foster new talent and development pathways for surfers, has been even more rewarding. I’m really proud of my team and the WSL for all we have achieved together. With the role now needing to be based in Los Angeles, I’m taking this opportunity to step down and spend more time in Australia with my family, while continuing to be a part of professional surfing in a more focused capacity.”
Pat O’Connell, former WSL Championship Tour (CT) competitor and current VP of Sports Marketing at Hurley, will succeed Perrow in the newly titled WSL role of SVP, Tours & Head of Competition (formerly titled “The Commissioner”), overseeing the Commissioner’s Office roles and responsibilities. O’Connell will be based out of WSL Headquarters in Los Angeles, California.
“Words can’t describe the amount of respect I have for the WSL, Kieren and his team,” O’Connell said. “From competitor to surfer rep to board member to commissioner, he really has given his all for surfing to get it to where it is today and I couldn’t be more thankful. It’s super hard to leave my family at Hurley as it’s been such a huge part of my life for more than 15 years. I’ve had an incredible experience at Hurley, but I’m beyond excited for the opportunity to lead the competitive aspects of surfing and further elevate the sport. I believe in the WSL, I believe in what it can be, and I’m stoked.”
A very good buy for the WSL, a Peter Pan to Sophie Goldschmidt’s Wendy, and a meteoric surge in talent levels at the Santa Monica office where Vals patrol the hallways with apparent impunity.