World’s Best Junior Surfers Prepare for First VISSLA ISA World Junior Surfing Championship Azores
The 2016 VISSLA ISA World Junior Surfing Championship will soon kick off from September 17-25 in the Azores Islands of Portugal, set to gather the world’s best junior surfers to compete for the coveted World Junior individual medals and Team Champion Trophy.
With the International Olympic Committee’s recent decision on August 3 to include Surfing on the Sports Program of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, 2016 will mark the first edition of the competition to take place in the era of Olympic Surfing, giving the world a glimpse of the potential future starts of the sport that will compete in the waves at Tokyo 2020.
Team USA celebrates winning their first Gold Medal in the history of the competition at the 2015 VISSLA ISA World Junior Surfing Championship in Oceanside, California. Photo: ISA / Sean Evans
In 2015, the VISSLA ISA World Junior Surfing Championship made history as the largest junior surfing competition to date, featuring 322 athletes that hailed from 37 countries around the globe. The 2016 edition will rival the records set in 2015 and could potentially surpass the record country participation for the second consecutive year.
Ever since the first ISA World Junior Surfing Championship in 1980 launched the career of Tom Curren, the event has been recognized as the ultimate breeding grounds for the world’s next wave of premiere surfers. The event has crowned the likes of Gabriel Medina, Julian Wilson, Jordy Smith, Alejo Muniz, Filipe Toledo, Owen Wright, Stephanie Gilmore, Sally Fitzgibbons, Laura Enever, Tatiana Weston-Webb and Tyler Wright, all of whom have gone on to lead successful Surfing careers at the professional level.
Gabriel Medina (BRA) stands atop the podium after winning the Boys U-18 Gold Medal at the 2010 ISA World Junior Surfing Championship in Piha Beach, New Zealand. Photo: ISA / Cory Scott
In 2015, Team USA took the Team Gold Medal for the first time in the contest’s history with Hawaii’s Summer Macedo (Girls U-16), USA’s Stevie Pittman (U-16 Boys), France’s Tessa Thyssen (U-18 Girls) and rising Italian superstar, Leonardo Fioravanti (U-18 Boys), earning the individual Gold Medals.
ISA President, Fernando Aguerre, said:
“The VISSLA ISA World Junior Surfing Championship is the premiere junior surfing competition in the world. We are proud to gather the youth of Surfing that represent the future of our sport and provide them with a platform to display their world-class talent in competition. We aim to foster their growth and development to ensure a bright future for the sport.
“Now that Surfing is an Olympic sport, these athletes will have even more motivation to surf with pride and perform well in hope of one day winning an Olympic Gold Medal. I am looking forward to being at the event and getting a glimpse of the future talent of our sport that we could see standing atop the Olympic podium at the Tokyo 2020 Games.”
President of VISSLA, Paul Naude, said:
“All of us at VISSLA are thrilled to once again be involved in the VISSLA ISA World Junior Surfing Championship. This year’s event is really special in that it’s being held in the beautiful Azores Islands of Portugal. With nearly 40 surfing nations confirmed to participate, we look forward to seeing some incredible performances from the world’s top junior surfers who no doubt will have their eyes on becoming future Olympians.”
The live webcast of the 2015 VISSLA ISA World Junior Surfing Championship will be streamed from September 17-25 on www.isaworlds.com.
VISSLA is a clothing brand that represents creative freedom, a forward-thinking philosophy, and a generation of creators and innovators. VISSLA embraces the modern do-it-yourself attitude within surf culture, performance surfing, and craftsmanship. This is a surf-everything and ride-anything mentality.