A short press release arrived in my email inbox yesterday evening announcing the “historic” changes to the 2010 ASP World Tour schedule. I can’t recall the last time the ASP sent out a press release that didn’t include the word “historic” in it. Everything the ASP does is historic these days. It’s like Roosevelt’s speech when the Japanese Empire bombed Pearl Harbor.
“Today—ay-ay will be a date which will live in infamy as we announce sweeping changes to the already Dreamy Dream Tour schedule.”
But who can blame them? This stuff is exciting and the 2010 season doesn’t kick off for two months.
Frankly, there are not a lot of changes. A few tweaks here. A few tweaks there. Teahupoo has been moved up by a few months. They dropped fickle Munduka for Portugal. And they pushed back the start date of the Teahupoo event to capitalize on swell opportunity. Billabong has dropped an event and Rip Curl has added one more event. But I was thoroughly disappointed they did not formally announce the venue for the Rip Curl Pro Search. My money is on Huntington.
If it isn’t broke why fix it. Right? To be fair, Mother Nature was not kind to the WCT in 2009. Perhaps that’s what so great about surfing—the uncertainty. If the waves are as bad in 2010 as they were in ’09 then THAT would be “historic.”
The 2010 ASP World Tour schedule is as follows:
Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast, February 27 – March 10, 2010
Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach, March 30 – April 10, 2010
Hang Loose Santa Catarina Pro, April 21 – April 30, 2010
Billabong Pro Jeffreys Bay, July 15 – 25, 2010
Billabong Pro Teahupoo, August 23 – September 3, 2010
Hurley Pro Trestles, September 12 – 21, 2010
Quiksilver Pro France, September 25 – October 5, 2010
Rip Curl Pro Portugal, October 7 – 18, 2010
Rip Curl Pro Search, October 30 – November 10, 2010
Billabong Pipe Masters, December 8 – 20, 2010
Now let’s take a trip down memory lane and compare the tour today to 1990.
O’Neill Pepsi Cold Water Classic – Santa Cruz, USA
Bundaberg Rum Surf Masters – Burleigh Heads, Australia
Rip Curl Coca-Cola Surfing Classic – Bells Beach, Australia
Coca Cola Bottlers Surf Classic – Narrabeen Beach, Australia
Gunston 500 – Durban, South Africa
Life’s a Beach Surf Klassik – Oceanside Pier, USA
OP Pro – Huntington Beach, USA
Quiksilver Lacanau Pro – Lacanau, France
Rip Curl Pro Landes – Hossegor, France
Arena Surfmasters – Biarritz, France
Pukas Pro – Zarautz, Spain
Seland Pro – Sopelana, Spain
Buondi Pro – Ericeira, Portugal
Marui Pro – Chiba, Japan
Alternativa Surf International – Rio De Janeiro, Brazil
Hang Loose Pro – Guaruja, Brazil
The Drug Offensive Masters – Margaret River, Australia
BHP Steel International – Newcastle Beach, Australia
Hard Rock Cafe World Cup of Surfing – Haleiwa, Hawaii
Marui Pipeline Masters – Pipeline, Hawaii
Billabong Pro – North Shore, Hawaii
Now that wasn’t exactly a dream schedule…six events in Europe and crappy beachbreaks galore. Another thing you will notice is the amount of corporate event sponsors like the Hard Rock Cafe, BHP Steel, Coca Cola and Pepsi. It was a far cry from today’s tour which is essentially controlled by three major surf brands.
Nevertheless, Tom Curren dominated the 1990 season by winning the first three events and more than a third of the 21 events.
Photo Credit: © ASP/ CI/ Scholtz via Getty Images