US Open of Surfing: brands come and go from the pier

Nike and Hurley have decided to pull off the support to the US Open of Surfing. California and the world of wave riding is in state of shock.

Huntington Beach is the heart of American surfing. One of the world's best point breaks is currently seeking new sponsors for its iconic event. After four consecutive years of sponsoring, Nike and Hurley say goodbye to the pier.

"In the spirit of evolving, we are exploring new opportunities to help elevate the sport beyond the sand to new audiences around the world", Bob Hurley, founder of Hurley, told in an interview with Shop-Eat-Surf.

The Association of Surfing Professionals was not expecting the decision, but it there's a subtle difference in the relationship with the US Open of Surfing.

"Nike did not inform the ASP of their decision to withdraw from the US Open before today’s announcement, however, their relationship was with the license holder, IMG", said the ASP’s Dave Prodan. "

"ASP deals with IMG on the license for the US Open and IMG, in turn, work with companies like Nike on sponsorship. We are thankful for Nike and Hurley’s contribution to the US Open over the last several years".

Are Nike and Hurley looking for an new world surfing tour format? Will the US Open keep the Women's event? In 2012, more than one million surf fans visited the event during its holding period.