|Current season, competition or edition:|
|Headquarters||Burleigh Heads, Australia|
|Official website|| www|
The World Surf League (WSL)is the governing body for professional surfers and is dedicated to showcasing the world's best talent in a variety of progressive formats. The World Surf League was originally known as the International Professional Surfing founded by Fred Hemmings and Randy Rarick in 1976. IPS created the first world circuit of pro surfing events. In 1983 the Association of Surfing Pros took over management of the world circuit. In 2013, the ASP was acquired by ZoSea, backed by Paul Speaker, Terry Hardy, and Dirk Ziff. At the start of the 2015 season, the ASP changed its name to the World Surf League (WSL). Sophie Goldschmidt was appointed as WSL CEO on July 19, 2017. Paul Speaker had stepped down as CEO on January 11, 2017, and Dirk Ziff acted as the interim WSL CEO until Goldschmidt's appointment.
Surfing is a surface water sport in which the wave rider, referred to as a surfer, rides on the forward or face of a moving wave, which usually carries the surfer towards the shore. Waves suitable for surfing are primarily found in the ocean, but can also be found in lakes or rivers in the form of a standing wave or tidal bore. However, surfers can also utilize artificial waves such as those from boat wakes and the waves created in artificial wave pools.
Dirk Edward Ziff is an American billionaire businessman, the eldest son of publishing magnate William Bernard Ziff Jr. He and his two brothers inherited the family fortune in 1994.
Sophie Goldschmidt is a British business executive. She is Chief Executive Officer of the World Surf League. Goldschmidt was ranked number 15, on the 2018 Forbes list of the "Most Powerful Women In International Sport," after having announced in January 2018, an exclusive digital broadcasting rights deal for WSL, with Facebook, worth $30 million over two years.
As of December 2017, the WSL had more than 6.5 million Facebook fans, surpassing more established sports such as the National Hockey League, the Association of Tennis Professionals and Major League Soccer. Sports Business Journal reported that 28 million hours of WSL digital video content were consumed during the 2017 season, making WSL the third most watched sport online, behind NFL and NBA.
In January 2018, Forbes reported that the WSL had signed an exclusive deal for digital broadcast rights, with Facebook, worth $30 million over two years.
Forbes is an American business magazine. Published bi-weekly, it features original articles on finance, industry, investing, and marketing topics. Forbes also reports on related subjects such as technology, communications, science, politics, and law. Its headquarters is located in Jersey City, New Jersey. Primary competitors in the national business magazine category include Fortune and Bloomberg Businessweek. The magazine is well known for its lists and rankings, including of the richest Americans, of the world's top companies, and The World's Billionaires. The motto of Forbes magazine is "The Capitalist Tool". Its chair and editor-in-chief is Steve Forbes, and its CEO is Mike Federle. In 2014, it was sold to a Hong Kong-based investment group, Integrated Whale Media Investments.
Facebook, Inc. is an American online social media and social networking service company based in Menlo Park, California. It was founded by Mark Zuckerberg, along with fellow Harvard College students and roommates Eduardo Saverin, Andrew McCollum, Dustin Moskovitz and Chris Hughes. It is considered one of the Big Four technology companies along with Amazon, Apple, and Google.
Fred Hemmings, retired from competition as a surfer, began his career as an event promoter and ran the Smirnoff World Pro-Am Surfing Championships between 1969 and 1977.
The International Professional Surfing (IPS) organization was the original world governing body of professional surfing that existed between 1976 and 1982. The IPS brought together a loose affiliation of surf contests around the world by forming one world circuit.
The predecessors of the WSL relates to what organization predominantly represented individual professional surfers at that time. This is an important point because the International Surfing Federation (ISF) still functions to this day as the International Surfing Association (ISA) and also refers to competition winners as world champions (or variants thereof).
The International Surfing Association (ISA) is the world governing authority for surfing, SUP racing, SUP surfing, bodyboarding, and all other wave riding activities. The ISA is recognized by the International Olympic Committee.
World Surf League eventually took control of the world pro surfing circuit. (WSL).The WSL has remained the predominant surfing organization and sanctioning body for professional surfers since its formation. The WSL's first world champions were Tom Carroll (men's) and Kim Mearig (women's) in 1983.
Thomas Victor "Tom" Carroll is an Australian former professional surfer from Sydney. He won the Australian Junior Title in 1978, the Pro Juniors in 1977 and 1980, the 1983 and 1984 ASP World Tour, and the 1987 Pipe Masters. He became the first surfing millionaire after signing a contract with Quiksilver in 1989.
In March 2015, WSL launched a free downloadable app, which garnered more than a million downloads in its first year. The app provides real-time updates on competitions and provides personalized alerts, letting fans know when their favorite athletes are about to enter the water.
In April 2016, the World Surf League introduced WSL PURE, its philanthropic initiative dedicated to supporting ocean health through research, education and advocacy. WSL PURE has contributed an initial $1.5 million in funding that will support scientists from the Columbia University Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, as they lead research into ocean health & ecosystems, ocean acidification, sea-level rise, and the role the oceans play in climate change.
On September 5, 2018, the World Surf League announced equal pay for every female and male WSL event. CEO Sophie Goldschmidt said, "This is a huge step forward in our long-planned strategy to elevate women's surfing and we are thrilled to make this commitment as we reveal our new 2019 schedule...".The announcement prompted a conversation about equal pay for professional athletes and the world commended the WSL for leading the way. 7 x world surfing champion Stephanie Gilmore said "I hope this serves as a model for other sports, global organizations and society as a whole. My fellow women athletes and I are honored by the confidence in us, and inspired to reward this decision with ever higher levels of surfing.".
WSL membership is only available to individuals and a few G.C's.
The WSL World Title Race is used to determine the WSL Men's World Title and the WSL Women's World Title. The winner is referred to as the WSL Tour Champion.
The WSL Men's World Title is given to the surfer with the most accumulated points from their respective best 9 results from the 11 WSL World Tour events (WSL Qualifying Series (QS) events excluded).
The WSL Women's World Title is given to the surfer with the most accumulated points from their respective best 8 results from the 10 WSL Women's Championship Tour events (WSL Qualifying Series (QS) events excluded).
The WSL Men's Championship Tour (CT) is the men's elite competition consisting of the best 34 professional surfers competing in 11 events (as of 2015).The WSL Men's prize money for winning a CT event is $100,000 US.
2019 Event Schedule:
The WSL Women's Championship Tour is the women's elite competition consisting of the best 17 professional surfers competing in 10 events (as of 2015).The WSL women prize money for winning a CT event is $100,000 US.
2019 Event Schedule:
Event results are converted to points and count towards the WSL World Title Race and the ultimate prize of being called the WSL World Tour Champion.
A WSL QS 10,000 event is held at premium venues with a restricted field and offers WSL QS 10,000 World Rankings points.
A WSL QS 1000, 1500, 3000 event is a lower level of competition, compared to an WSL QS 6000 and 10,000 event, with their importance indicated by how many points they are assigned: more points means generally better competition and prize money.
WSL Men's Championship Tour and WSL Women's Championship Tour surfers accumulate points from each WSL Championship Tour and WSL Qualifying Series event they compete in which count towards their WSL World Ranking.Accumulated points are valid for 12 months from the final date of the scheduled event in which they were earned.
WSL World Ranking determines the promotion or relegation of surfers.
The qualifiers for the 2012 ASP World Tour top 34 surfers was determined using a Rotation Points system.
The qualifiers for the 2012 ASP Women's World Tour was determined by a surfer's rank at the conclusion of the 2011 Tour. The top 10 re-qualified for 2012 and the remaining 7 places were taken from the ASP Star Ranking.
The qualifiers for the following year's WSL Championship Tour top 34 surferswill consist of:
In contests surfers will be scored on a scale of 0.1 to 10.0, these scores will be broken up into increments of one-tenth. The following scale can be used to relate descriptions with the score:
Judges will base the score on how successfully surfers display these following elements in each wave:
These elements may be weighted differently from day to day and event to event, depending upon on the surfing conditions and the type of breaking wave at each event location. This criterion is different from in longboarding competitions. All of this is focused on creating some type consistency that can be seen throughout the many different events.
The events themselves are previously declared QS 1,000 - QS 10,000 events; among other things this ranking shows what numbers of judges which are required at the event. QS 1,000 - QS 3,000 Qualifying Series events are required to have a six judge panel with four judges on each heat. A QS 4,000 - QS 6,000 Qualifying Series event requires seven judges with five of those judges on each heat. At QS 5,000 - QS 10,000 Qualifying Series events there are only allowed to be 3 judges from any one region. This is then limited to two at any world championship events. All events also require an WSL approved head judge who has the ability to make corrections to errors or any other events that may have affected the results.
There are many rules out in the water that all revolve around the idea of right of way. A surfer has the right of way if he or she is closer to the area where the wave is breaking, this is more commonly referred to as having the inside position. If another surfer takes off in front of the surfer that has the inside position, then interference will be called, and penalties will be enacted. In most circumstances it does not matter who stood up first but who has the inside position.
A surfer can also be found guilty of interference if they catch more than their maximum number of waves in a heat and that this takes away from the other competitors ability to catch waves. A competitor is also not allowed to interfere with another competitor's paddling and maneuvering for a wave.
The rules of right of way vary slightly with the type of break. Point Breaks will always have a consistent direct of what is inside, that is, the person further up the line will have right of way. In a single peak situation where there is both a left and a right two people are able to be on the wave at the same time, provided that one goes left and one goes right and that neither crosses the path of the other to go one direction. If this does happen then, the surfer who stood up first will get the right of way. On a multi-peaked wave where the wave eventually comes together, both peaks can be surfed until the surfers come together. When they do the surfer who stood up first has right of way, and the other must maneuver to get off the wave without interrupting the other surfer.
In a one-on-one competition, priority can be declared by the Head Judge. Once the person with priority has paddled for a wave priority is then turned over to the next person until that person does the same. The person with second priority can paddle for waves as long as it does not interfere with the other person who will lose their priority only if they catch a wave.
A surfer who has already taken off or obtained possession of a wave maintains this position until the end of their ride. If another surfer takes off on the inside of this surfer, then this person does not obtain priority and is considered to be snaking. If this surfer does not hurt the other surfers ride, then both people can be scored based. If the judges determine that the snaking did interfere then the person will be penalized. Interference penalties are called by the judges and must have a majority to be declared an actual penalty. Interference are shown as triangles on the score cards in various different ways depending on when or where in the heat they were made. If three or more waves are being scored than one wave will be dropped off the score card. If only the top two waves are being scored, then 50% of the second best-scored wave will be taken off. If a surfer has more than one then 50% of the best waves score will be taken off also. The surfer who has been interfered with will be allowed an additional wave to their maximum as long as it is within the time limit. If a surfer interferes more than twice in a heat then they must leave the competition area.
|Year||WSL Men's Championship Tour||WSL Women's Championship Tour|
|ASP World Tour|
|IPS World Circuit|
|Smirnoff World Pro-Am Surfing Championships|
|ISF World Surfing Championships|
|1972 - San Diego, USA||–||–|
|1970 - Torquay / Lorne / Johanna, AUS||–||–|
|1968 - Rincon, Puerto Rico, PR||–||–|
|1966 - San Diego, USA||–||–|
|1965 - Punta Rocas, Peru||–||–|
|1964 - Manly, AUS||–||–|
|Year||WSL World Longboard Tour||WSL Women's World Longboard Tour|
|Year||WSL Men's World Junior||WSL Women's World Junior|
|Year||WSL World Big Wave Tour||WSL Women's World Big Wave Tour|
|Year||WSL Triple Crown Champions|
Qualifier for list is to hold a minimum of two world championship titles across the categories.
Calculations include world championship titles outside of the WSL as discussed in Predecessors to the WSL section.
|Country||Championship Tour (CT)|
(Men & Women)
|Junior Championships (JC)|
(Boys & Girls)
|Big Wave Championship Tour (BW)|
(Men & Women)
|Triple Crown Champions|
|Longboard Championships (LC)|
(Men & Women)
Robert Kelly Slater is an American professional surfer, author, actor, model, environmental activist, businessman, and innovator, best known for his unprecedented 11 world surfing championships. He is widely regarded as the greatest professional surfer of all time.
The Billabong Pipeline Masters is an event in surfing held annually at Banzai Pipeline in Oahu, Hawaii. It was established in 1970 and attracts the top 45 surfers from The World Surf League (WSL) as well as 16 surfers who compete in walk-on trials. The surfers compete for a share of US$525,000 prize money. The event is the final leg of the Triple Crown of Surfing and the final event on the WSL Championship Tour.
Carissa Kainani Moore is an American professional surfer and the 2011, 2013 and 2015 WSL Women's World Tour Champion.
Julian Wilson is an Australian professional surfer who competes on the World Surf League Men's World Tour.
The Association of Surfing Professionals Europe is the governing body for professional surfers in Europe and is dedicated to showcasing the continent's best talent in a variety of progressive formats. It is one of seven regions of the ASP World Tour.
Adriano "Mineirinho" de Souza is a Brazilian professional surfer and also the 2015 WSL World Champion. He has been competing on the World Surf League Men's World Tour since 2005.
The World Surf League Australasia is the governing body for professional surfers in Australasia and is dedicated to showcasing the continent's best talent in a variety of progressive formats. It is one of seven regions of the World Surf League.
Owen Wright is an Australian professional surfer on the World Surf League Men's Championship Tour. His sister, Tyler Wright, is also a competitor on the Association of Surfing Professionals World Tour.
Gabriel Medina Pinto Ferreira is a Brazilian professional surfer, also the 2014 and 2018 WSL World Champion. Medina joined the world's elite of the World Surf League Tour in 2011, and in his rookie year he finished within the top 12 of the ASP World Tour at the age of 17. In March 2014 he won the Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast. Media sources credit him as being the second person to have executed a maneuver called the "Backflip". Medina also became the first person ever to land this move in competition.
Nikki van Dijk is an Australian professional surfer. She competes in the World Surf League.
Filipe Toledo is a Brazilian professional surfer who competes on the World Surf League Men's World Tour since 2013. In 2014, after also competing on some events on the Qualifying Series (WQS), Toledo became the WQS champion. In 2015, Toledo had the best year of his professional career on the WSL World Championship Tour, managing to grab his first 3 WCT event wins, getting at least one perfect 10 in each final he competed. Toledo was also the surfer with most WCT event wins of the year. He went on to finish the 2015 season in 4th place.
Italo Ferreira is a Brazilian professional surfer who competes on the World Surfing League Men's World Tour since 2015, after his 7th-place finish on the 2014 WSL World Qualifying Series season. Ferreira won the Rookie of The Year award after his finish in 7th place on the 2015 WSL World Championship Tour, surpassing fellow 2015 rookies Wiggolly Dantas (15th), Keanu Asing (20th), Ricardo Christie (31st), and Matt Banting (33rd).
Tatiana Weston-Webb is a Brazilian/American surfer from Kauai, Hawaii. She was the only rookie on the WCT in 2015. Weston-Webb wears jersey number 9 and her 2016 'CT rank is number 4.
Surfing at the Summer Olympics will make its debut appearance in the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo, Japan.
Justine Dupont is a French professional surfer.
MEO Rip Curl Pro Portugal formerly known as Moche Rip Curl Pro Portugal or Rip Curl Pro Portugal is a professional surfing competition of the ASP World Tour held every year in October at the Supertubos beach in Peniche, Portugal. The event was first founded in 2009 as Rip Curl Search Portugal. The defending champion is the Brazilian surfer Gabriel Medina who won the event in 2017.
Barron Mamiya is a junior professional surfer from Hawaii. He first competed in the Junior World Surf League in 2012 at age 11 and won the Men's Pro Junior Vans US Open of Surfing in 2018.
Caroline Marks is an American professional surfer of Greek ancestry. She is a multiple national champion and the youngest female to compete in a World Surf League event. She is the youngest surfer ever to qualify for the women’s Championship Tour.
The 2019 World Surf League Championship Tour (CT) is a professional, competitive surfing league run by the World Surf League (WSL), starting on 3 April 2019. Men and women compete in separate tours, with events taking place from early April to mid-December at various surfing locations around the world. Surfers receive points based on performance at each event. The surfer with the most points at the end of the tour is declared the 2019 World Surf League Champion.