Canada’s best surfers riding Tofino waves

Pacific Rim National Park Reserve hosts Rip Curl Nationals next month

Canada’s best surfers will take on the waves at Wickaninnish Beach in the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve on May 10-12 to contend for 2019 Rip Curl National titles across five categories: open shortboard, junior U18, junior U16, longboard, and SUP surf.

Adaptive surfing will also be showcased throughout the Mother’s Day weekend.

Cold water king and eight-time men’s open shortboard champion Peter Devries will challenge the likes of Maui’s Cody Young, who won the Sunset Pro World Surf League qualifying series on Oahu in January, while Tofino’s teenage surf queen Mathea Olin will aim to outshine last year’s women’s open shortboard champion, Californian junior pro Bethany Zelasko.

Following Surf Nationals finals day on Sunday, May 12, the best open shortboard division male and female surfers will be invited to compete in the Team Canada Trials event set for the mornings of May 13-14.

According to executive director of Surf Canada, Dom Domic, combining points from Nationals and Team Trials increases the probability of selecting the best surfers to represent Team Canada as they attempt to qualify for a spot on the Tokyo 2020 Olympic roster.

“Cream rises to the top,” said Domic. “Proof is in the performance.”

Surfing makes its debut at the 2020 Summer Games in Japan, with 20 men and 20 women surfers competing in separate shortboard events. To earn a ticket to Tokyo, the International Surfing Association (ISA) has come up with an equal opportunity process for surfers to qualify regardless of what country they are from. The process is divided into four levels of hierarchy: world surf league final rankings, ISA surfing games, continental games (i.e. Pan Am Games), and host country allocation. A maximum of two surfers per country can qualify.

“It’s genius, but complex,” notes Domic.

He went on to tell the Westerly News that he’s been getting a lot of interest in the Surf Canada Nationals from professional surfers around the world that hold Canadian passports.

“They are 100 per cent coming out of the wood work,” he confirmed.

Once again, Surf Canada has partnered with Parks Canada to host the 2019 Rip Curl Nationals presented by Red Bull. Pacific Rim National Park Reserve visitor experience manager and acting superintendent Dave Tovell said the PRNPR is getting stoked for another surf contest.

“Surfing is the culture out here. It’s the culture of the Pacific Rim area and the greater region. It’s something we all do and take part in. It’s such a big part of our community life, so to have the National Championships and the Olympic Trials held right here is pretty awesome and pretty unique,” said Tovell.

Surf Canada and the PRNPR has also teamed up with Surfrider Pacific Rim to make the Nationals a zero impact event. The 2018 Surf Nationals attracted about 1,000 visitors over three days, according to Parks Canada.

“Our goal is to leave Wick Beach looking better than when we got there,” said Domic.

Tovell reinforced the ‘Leave No Trace’ mantra.

“If you go down to the beach, grab a few pieces of garbage on the way out. It all adds up,” said Tovell.

“We have a really good thing going here with Surf Canada. Hopefully the weather holds up and there’s some good swell and we get to see some epic surfing,” he said.

Domic said that if the waves at Wickaninnish are really “gnarly” during the contest, the surfers can tuck into the corner known as Torpedo Point, located in front of the Kwisitis Visitor Centre parking lot.

Tovell adds that dogs are permitted to attend the Surf Canada Nationals, but must be kept on leash at all times.

“Shorebirds are migrating,” he said.

Just Posted

Removal of old Elk Falls parking lots underway

Already replaced by the new access to the suspension bridge

High-profile Port Alberni murders are the centre of new true crime book

Retired journalist Shayne Morrow pairs historic murders with the science that solved them

Canadiana complete when Murray McLauchlan’s in the house

Legendary singer/songwriter brings his folksy talents to the McPherson on June 13

COLUMN: Motoring along sure to be different with changes to cars, infrastructure

Younger generation seems intent on creating a more efficient planet

Vancouver Islander pens Mourning Has Broken following death of her daughter

Book by radio host Erin Davis gives advice to others struggling with grief

Police release photos of suspect in daytime sex assault at Vancouver woman’s home

A young woman, in hers 20s, was followed home by the man, before he violently attacked her inside

So, they found ‘Dave from Vancouver Island’

Dave Tryon, now 72, will reunite with long-ago travelling friends in Monterey, Calif.

Raptors beat Bucks 100-94 to advance to franchise’s first-ever NBA Finals

Leonard has 27 points, 17 boards to lead Toronto past Milwaukee

Third person charged in death of B.C. teen Bhavkiran Dhesi

Inderdeep Kaur Deo facing charge of accessory after the fact to murder

Kamloops girl, 9, recovering from carbon monoxide poisoning now out of ICU

Her mother who was sleeping in the same tent with her did not survive

‘I think he’s still alive’: B.C. mom pleads for help finding son last seen a month ago

Family offering $5,000 reward for information leading to the safe return of Tim Delahaye

New poll suggests one-third don’t want politicians to wear religious symbols

Local politicians shouldn’t be allowed to wear hijabs, crucifixes or turbans on the job, survey suggests

Raptors fans far from home adjust plans to watch pivotal playoff game

Raptors currently lead the playoff series 3-2, and a win Saturday would vault them into NBA finals

PHOTOS: First responders in Fernie rescue baby owl who fell from nest

The baby owl’s inability to fly back to its nest prompted a rescue by first responders

Most Read