Hope springs eternal!
Nostalgia is a disease, on that we can agree, but we can also agree that the greatest time in the history of professional surfing was from 1999 – 2011 or thereabouts. For it was then that Wayne “Rabbit” Bartholomew floated the Dream Tour, placing the world’s best surfers on the world’s best waves and… oh I don’t need to remind you of the glorious. The singular glories.
Brodie Carr deftly snagged the reigns and guided the Association of Surfing Professionals and it seemed as though it would never end.
A golden era.
Well, co-Waterperson of the Year Dirk Ziff purchased the whole thing for free in 2012, began construction of the Wall of Positive Noise and here we are today.
A bloated, busted “media organization” that has little chance of reviving this year and storm clouds already hovering over next.
Could Rabbit get the gang (Brodie) back together and re-wrest control of the Pastime of Kings away from ELo and co.?
Let’s turn to Australia’s Gold Coast Bulletin for clues.
Since the World Surf League tour both WCT (World Championship Tour) and WQS (World Qualifying Series) has been on hold after Sydney Pro the last event held in March 14th, there has been mounting speculation as to what happens next.
Logan said as if it was a lay day contest call, “Everything is on hold until another announcement on June 1st.”
This leaves JBay (July), Teahupoo (August), Kelly’s Wave Ranch (September), France and Portugal in October, and Hawaii. (December. Outside oh Hawaii, it would seem unlikely that these events will happen considering the travelling issue and without a vaccine for COVID.
The problem for surfing unlike other sports such as NRL is that it is World Professional Surfing is a Global World Tour.
If restrictions are suitably lifted for travelling and the threat of the virus is contained, it could be possible for the World Tour to resume by September.
One scenario proposed by former President/CEO of ASP (former Administration of World Surf League) Wayne “Rabbit” Bartholomew is to create a Pacific rim tour including WAs Margaret River & Victoria’s Bells Beach.
Throw in Tavarua Fiji, Teahupoo Tahiti and then finish in Hawaii at Pipe.
“It’s a restricted World Tour of types but held in quality wave locations and a way to crown the World Champions for 2020,” said Bartholomew the architect of the ASP World Dream Tour who introduced events in exotic locations renown for excellent waves.
Of course Rabbit is offering his expertise, free of charge, to the World Surf League BUT the fact that he is even thinking about alternative scenarios makes my heart sing.
Are you reading?
Surfing now turns its lonely eyes to you.