- 12 April 2010 | Surfing
The Western Atlantic Pro Surf Series (WAPSS), the only pro surfing tour that exists on the east coast of the United States, is run by Michael Bloom who is an Association of Surfing (ASP) certified judge and a professional photographer.
For the first time in the tour’s existence it will venture beyond its native shores of the US and run an event in Trinidad and Tobago in partnership with Surfing T&T. In order to make the event attractive to international pro surfers, Bloom teamed up with Épicé Sunscreen of the US to secure the largest Prize Purse ever for an International Surf Contest in Trinidad and Tobago.
Épicé Sunscreen’s developer and owner, Michael S. Spicer MD, FAAD, was born in Trinidad and is returning to his roots to bring much needed support to a developing sport in a developing island. He is also bringing a superior sun protection product than what is currently available in Trinidad’s market.
After testing many sun protection products, Dr. Spicer finally found one that dries like a powder, doesn't burn the eyes and, most importantly, keeps the sun's harmful rays at bay. After all, no one wants to hold a surfboard or a fishing rod with sticky or slippery hands just because of sun protection.
The stage is now set for an epic surf contest in Sans Souci, Toco; at a beach the locals affectionately call “Beach Break”. The small, half moon shaped bay will provide a coliseum style ambiance for spectators to watch the best pro surfers from the region battle for an unprecedented prize purse and the open men’s winner will walk away with US$3,000!
With so much money on the line, Surfing T&T and WAPSS have employed the services of top International Surf Judges from Jamaica, Barbados, Puerto Rico, and the Unites States, to compliment the a solid team of local judges who will all be managed by Surfing T&T’s head judge John Torry.
Two of these judges are certified by the Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) and the rest are certified by the International Surfing Association (ISA). Additionally, for the first time ever in Trinidad and Tobago, the Beach Byte computerized score tabulating system will be used to provide real-time tabulation of judge’s scores and place positions of surfers in the heat.
This computer system allows for greater spectator engagement as everyone is aware of what the surfers in the water need to accomplish in order to win their heat and advance to the next round.
The main categories are Open Men’s, Open Woman’s, and Pro Junior (Under 21). There will also be a Night Surfing Expression Session Event, where top surfers will be surfing under stadium lighting and will be looking to perform radical maneuvers to win a separate cash prize.
In addition to being internationally recognized as the second event of the 2010 Western Atlantic Pro Surf Series, Surfers will also be awarded points based on their performances that will contribute to their overall standing in the Caribbean Waterman Challenge 2010 competition.
International competitors will benefit from subsidized accommodation and meals packages organized by Surfing T&T, and can choose one of two packages at USD$30/day and USD$50/day, all meals and accommodation included.
Transportation to and from the contest site at Sans Souci will also be organized via shuttle services. Entry fees for the competitors are USD$50 for Open Men’s, and USD$25 for all other Categories. There will be prize money for the top 24 Open Men competitors beginning at USD$3000 for First Place.