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ISA World Junior Champs readies for Salinas, Ecuador

Josh Moniz & Mahina Maeda © ISA



VISSLA ISA World Junior Surfing Championships

Salinas, Ecuador
5 - 13 April, 2014

Top Junior surfers prepare for ISA Champs

Surfersvillage Global Surf News, 20 March, 2014 - 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.

The 2014 VISSLA ISA WJSC begins in just over two weeks. Over 30 countries from all corners of the planet 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.

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.

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).

winners 2013Current ISA World Junior Surfing Champions (clockwise from top left): Hawaiians Josh Moniz (Boys U-18), Mahina Maeda (Girls U-16), and Tatiana Weston-Webb (Girls U-18), and Australia’s Jacob Wilcox (Boy’s U-16). The three Hawaiian’s will be in Ecuador to defend their Gold Medals.

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.

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).

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.

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.

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.

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.

Important Dates:

    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

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