Ecuador will become the gathering place of the world’s best under-18 Junior surfers, who will compete in the 2014 VISSLA ISA World Junior Surfing Championship (WJSC) at the perfect, long, peeling left point break of La FAE in Salinas, from April 5 to 13.
Official poster of the 2014 VISSLA ISA World Junior Surfing Championship that will be held in La FAE, Salinas, Ecuador from April 5-13
The 2014 VISSLA ISA WJSC begins in just over two weeks. Over 30 countries from all corners of the plan et and 300 under-18 and under-16 boys and girls surfers will soon arrive to the beautiful country of Ecuador, its warm and welcoming people, and excellent waves.
Here are 10 things you need to know about the 2014 VISSLA ISA World Junior Surfing Championship:
1. The World Championship
The 2014 VISSLA ISA World Junior Surfing Championship (WJSC) is the biggest surfing competition in the world for under-18 surfers, boys and girls. With more than 300 of the best junior surfers from over 30 countries, the World Championship is the pinnacle in the career of every junior surfer around the world.
2. The Support
The World Junior Championships will be the first event ever sponsored by the new surf apparel brand VISSLA, which launches worldwide in April 2014. The WJSC will coincide with the brand’s global launch.
VISSLA is a clothing brand that represents creative freedom, a forward-thinking philosophy, and a generation of creators and innovators. They embrace the modern do-it-yourself attitude within surf culture, performance surfing, and craftsmanship. This is a surf-everything and ride-anything mentality. They are creators and innovators.
During the competition, VISSLA will be giving away custom shaped surfboards through a social media contest, the #CREATORSANDINNOVATORS Board Giveaway. By using the hashtag #CreatorsandInnovators, contestants will have a chance to win a new board from a VISSLA shaper. More details on how to enter will be available soon on VISSLA’s Instagram @VISSLASurf.
Additionally, the World Championship has the full support of Ecuador’s President, Rafael Correa, and the country’s Ministries of Tourism and Sports, as well as the Ecuadorian Surfing Federation (FES).
3. The Competition
The event gathers the best junior surfers from every continent to compete for their National Teams in an “Olympic-style” event. The surfers compete for medals and the honor of representing their respective countries.
The World Championship is a team competition with individual Boys and Girls divisions. Each National Team includes 4 under-18 Boys, 2 under-18 Girls, 4 under-16 Boys, and 2 under-16 Girls for a total of 12 athletes plus Team Officials.
4. The History
The ISA WJSC is an annual event, and this year’s competition will take place during the 50th Anniversary year of the ISA, which was founded in 1964. The ISA hosted its first WJSC in 1980 in Biarritz, France, where legendary surfer Tom Curren became the first ISA World Junior Champion, launching his successful career.
Past ISA World Junior Champions include current ASP World Tour competitors Gabriel Medina (BRA, 2010), Tyler Wright (AUS, 2010, 2009), Alejo Muniz (BRA, 2008), Laura Enever (AUS, 2008), Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS, 2007), Julian Wilson (AUS, 2006), Owen Wright (AUS, 2006), Pauline Ado (FRA, 2006), Stephanie Gilmore (AUS, 2005, 2004), Matt Wilkinson (AUS, 2004) and Jordy Smith (RSA, 2003).
5. The Host
This is the 4th ISA World Championship to be held in Ecuador over the last decade. The VISSLA ISA WJSC will mark the second consecutive year that Ecuador hosts an ISA World Championship. In 2013, the ISA World Masters Surfing Championship took place in Montañita; in 2009, the ISA World Junior Surfing Championship in La FAE, and in 2004 the ISA World Surfing Games in La FAE.
Ecuador has a rich surfing history that dates back thousands of years. The logo for the World Championship includes an image of the Sumpa Sun, which is a religious and mystic icon of the Sumpa Ecuadorian Paleo-Indian civilization that existed from 11,000 to 4,000 B.C. “Sumpa” is the native name of the Peninsula of Santa Elena where the event takes place. One of the first human groups to settle in Ecuador, and the only ones of this period discovered in the coastal region in the area, the Sumpa people based a lot of their life around the ocean. The logo not only pays homage to the ancient and rich history of the area, but it also provides a symbol to welcome young surfers from around the globe to enjoy and ride waves in the same ocean the Sumpa people based their lives around thousands of years ago.
6. The Prize
The athletes will compete for the individual and team Gold Medals and the coveted ISA World Junior Team Champion Trophy.
Powerhouse teams include the top 8 from the 2013 World Championship: Australia, Hawaii, USA, France, Japan, South Africa, Peru, and Brazil. Along with many other nations, all will be seeking a place on the podium in the Boys under-18, Boys under-16, Girls under-18 and Girls under-16 divisions, and, most importantly, the overall team standings.
7. The Wave and Location
The 2014 VISSLA ISA WJSC will be held at La FAE, located on a military air force base in the westernmost point of South America known as “Peninsula de Santa Elena”. La FAE is a ten minute drive from Salinas, Ecuador, and offers a long peeling left point break with a flat reef and an adjacent sand bottom beach break that will be used for the double-area contest site. The best swell directions are South-West and West swells, with the best season generally between March and May with light offshore winds, sunny conditions, and warm water.
Salinas is the westernmost city on mainland Ecuador and is located in the Province of Santa Elena. Salinas is a popular international destination where visitors can enjoy good food and excellent climate. The extensive beaches have good, consistent waves at any point along the way.
8. The Schedule
The 12th edition of the championship will officially open on April 5 in Salinas, at the traditional ISA Opening Ceremony, which will include the Parade of the Nations and Sands of the World Ceremony.
The Parade of the Nations is a colorful and energy-filled event, complete with teams chanting, flags waving and the cheering of the locals who come out to watch the spectacle.
The Sands of the World Ceremony symbolizes the true fraternal spirit that bonds together all members of the global surfing tribe. The union of the countries of the world in this ceremony is symbolized through the mixing of the sands from the shores of all participating National Delegations, showcasing the ISA’s desire for a better and peaceful world.
Friday April 4th – Official Press Conference at the Amantes de Sumpa Museum
Saturday April 5th – Parade of Nations and Opening Ceremony
Sunday April 6th – Competition Begins
Monday April 7th – Saturday April 12th competitions resumes every day
Sunday April 13th – Final day of competition, Awards Presentation and Closing Ceremony
9. Follow The Event Live
To watch the official event promo, visit the official event website www.isawjsc.com, where you will soon find photos, videos and the live webcast beginning on Saturday, April 5 with the Opening Ceremony. Competition begins on Sunday, April 6 and continues every day. The Finals and Closing Ceremony will be Sunday, April 13.
In addition to the event website, the live webcast and full coverage of the 2014 VISSLA ISA WJSC will be available on these major websites:
ISA Member Nations’ Websites
10. The Mission
The ISA’s mission is to develop the sport of surfing in Ecuador and around the world. This is accomplished through annual World Championships, membership development, educational programs, scholarship distribution and working towards Olympic Surfing.
Bonus: Past Champions
Past individual and team champions of the ISA World Junior Surfing Championship are:
Under 18 Boys
1980 – Biarritz, France: Tom Curren (USA)
1982 – Gold Coast, Australia: Bryce Ellis (AUS)
1984 – Huntington Beach, USA: Damien Hardman (AUS)
1986 – Newquay, England: Vetea David (TAH)
1988 – Aguadilla, Puerto Rico: Chris Brown (USA)
1990 – Chiba, Japan: Shane Bevan (AUS)
1992 – Lacanau, France: Chad Edser (AUS)
1994 – Rio de Janeiro, Brazil: Kalani Robb (HAW)
1996 – Huntington Beach, USA: Ben Bourgeois (USA)
1998 – Carcavelos, Portugal: Dean Morrison (AUS)
2000 – Porto de Galinhas, Brazil: Joel Centeio (HAW)
2002 – Durban, South Africa: Warwick Wright (RSA)
2003 – Durban, South Africa: Ben Dunn (AUS)
2004 – Papenoo, Tahiti: James Wood (AUS)
2005 – Huntington Beach, USA: Jefferson Silva (BRA)
2006 – Maresias, Brazil: Julian Wilson (AUS)
2007 – Costa de Caparica, Portugal: Jadson André (BRA)
2008 – Seignosse, France: Alejo Muniz (BRA)
2009 – Salinas, Ecuador: Dean Bowen (AUS)
2010 – Piha Beach, New Zealand: Gabriel Medina (BRA)
2011 – Punta Hermosa, Peru: Cristobal De Col (PER)
2012 – Playa Venao, Panama: Matheus Navarro (BRA)
2013 – Playa Jiquiliste, Nicaragua: Josh Moniz (HAW)
Under 18 Girls
2003 – Durban, South Africa: Jesse Miley Dyer (AUS)
2004 – Papenoo, Tahiti: Stephanie Gilmore (AUS)
2005 – Huntington Beach, USA: Stephanie Gilmore (AUS)
2006 – Maresias, Brazil: Pauline Ado (FRA)
2007 – Costa de Caparica, Portugal: Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS)
2008 – Seignosse, France: Laura Enever (AUS)
2009 – Salinas, Ecuador: Tyler Wright (AUS)
2010 – Piha Beach, New Zealand: Tyler Wright (AUS)
2011 – Punta Hermosa, Peru: Canelle Bulard (FRA)
2012 – Playa Venao, Panama: Dax McGill (HAW)
2013 – Playa Jiquiliste, Nicaragua: Tatiana Weston-Webb (HAW)
Under 16 Boys
2003 – Durban, South Africa: Jordy Smith (RSA)
2004 – Papenoo, Tahiti: Matt Wilkinson (AUS)
2005 – Huntington Beach, USA: Tonino Benson (HAW)
2006 – Maresias, Brazil: Owen Wright (AUS)
2007 – Costa de Caparica, Portugal: Garret Parkes (AUS)
2008 – Seignosse, France: Tamaroa McComb (TAH)
2009 – Salinas, Ecuador: Keanu Asing (HAW)
2010 – Piha Beach, New Zealand: Matt Banting (AUS)
2011 – Punta Hermosa, Peru: Filipe Toledo (BRA)
2012 – Playa Venao, Panama: Kalani David (HAW)
2013 – Playa Jiquiliste, Nicaragua: Jacob Wilcox (AUS)
2013 – Playa Jiquiliste, Nicaragua: Mahina Maeda (HAW)
2003 – Durban, South Africa: Team Brazil
2004 – Papenoo, Tahiti: Team Australia
2005 – Huntington Beach, USA: Team Hawaii
2006 – Maresias, Brazil: Team Australia
2007 – Costa de Caparica, Portugal: Team Australia
2008 – Seignosse, France: Team Australia
2009 – Salinas, Ecuador: Team Australia
2010 – Piha Beach, New Zealand: Team Australia
2011 – Punta Hermosa, Peru: Team Peru
2012 – Playa Venao, Panama: Hawaii
2013 – Playa Jiquiliste, Nicaragua: Australia