World gathers for Billabong ISA Surfing Games
Silvana Lima & Victor Soriano © Rommel González
Billabong ISA World Surfing Games
International Surfing Assn
Playa Venao, Panama
25 June - 3 July 2011
Surfers From Around the World Convene in Panama for the Billabong ISA World Surfing Games | espanol
Surfersvillage Global Surf News, 25 June, 2011 : - - The International Surfing Association welcomed more than 27 nations to the Billabong ISA World Surfing Games presented by Panama today in Pedasí, Panama. The official program started with a press conference hosted by a panel of participants and organizers at the picturesque Casa de Campo Hotel.
ISA President Fernando Aguerre did not attend the press conference, as he’s in California recovering from a surfing injury. From home he stated, “I would have loved to be with all of you today. I want to extend my warmest welcome and my deepest gratitude to Panama, one of the best surfing destinations in the world, land of warm water, great waves and very, very warm people.”
Today’s panelists included Bob Mignogna, International Surfing Association Director General, Victor Soriano, Panama Tourism Authority Representative, Chris Heffner, Billabong Global Events Manager, Silvana Lima, ASP Women’s World Tour Top 5, Gary Saavedra, eleven-time National Champion of Panama, Jeremy Flores, 2009 ISA World Champion and Sofía Mulanovich, 2004 ISA and ASP World Champion.
“It’s very important for the ISA to have this event in Panama,” said Mignogna. “On behalf of the ISA, I want to thank all the wonderful people and the Government of Panama for having the second ISA World Championship event in less than one year. Panama hosted the ISA World Masters Surfing Championship in Santa Catalina last August, and it was a very successful event. The ISA and Billabong decided to come back and bring the World Surfing Games to Panama.”
Bob Mignona addresses the crowd © Rommel González
Chris Heffner explained why it is important for Billabong to support this event: “The ISA gives us a great opportunity to bring the surfing world together. Most of the contests are individuals competing, where you just have one winner and it’s all about me versus him. This event gives us a chance to bring all surfers together to surf for their Nations and to have a great event.”
“I like being here in the World Surfing Games, because as pros, we are used to surfing for ourselves and here we surf for our National Teams. It’s different; it’s fun, and I feel really good here,” said France’s team member Jeremy Flores.
Another World Champion, Peruvian Sofía Mulanovich highlighted how important her previous ISA event win was for her, saying, “When I won this event back in 2004, it was one of the best feelings ever—even more than the ASP title, because I won it for my country. I was able to carry my flag with all of my team.”
Almost 200 surfers from Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, El Salvador, France, Guatemala, Ireland, Israel, Jamaica, Japan, Mexico, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Panama, Peru, Puerto Rico, South Africa, Switzerland, Tahiti, Uruguay, USA and Venezuela are training right now in the perfect lefts and rights of beautiful Playa Venao. The teams will take part in a historical Opening Ceremony on Saturday.
Editors Note: Panama economic activity grows 6.8 pct in April
* Economy boosted by transport, ports, telecoms
* Economy expected to grow 9 pct this year
Panama City (Reuters) - Panama's economic activity increased 6.8 percent in April compared with the same period a year earlier, the government statistics agency said on Friday. Panama's economy was boosted by port activity, air transportation and telecommunications.
Increased vehicle and gasoline sales, in spite of high fuel prices, boosted consumption, while mining, tourism and construction also helped the economy. The Central American nation's dollarized, services economy is among Latin America's top performers and is being helped by the $5.25-billion expansion of the Panama Canal, government infrastructure spending and foreign investment.
Panama's economy is set to expand by 9 percent this year and 7 percent in 2012. Panama's economy expanded by 9.7 percent in the first quarter of the year and inflation topped a more-than two-year high at 6.4 percent in May. (Reporting by Sean Mattson; editing by Carol Bishopric)
Survey: Map Surfing’s future
ISA World Games - Surfersvillage