Professional bodyboarding events return to Pipeline

January 2, 2019 | Bodyboarding
Pipeline: bodyboarders are expected to return to Her Majesty's | Photo: Gonzo/APB

The professional bodyboarding circuit is returning to Banzai Pipeline, in Hawaii, after a one-year hiatus.

The City and County of Honolulu Department of Parks and Recreation confirmed that the APB World Tour will be able to run an event at Pipeline at least until 2021.

The entity responsible for managing surf events on the North Shore of Oahu released the calendar of permitted competitions in the Hawaiian island for 2018-2021.

The schedule includes three bodyboarding contests:

2019 Pipe Challenge: February 24 - March 8
2020 Mike Stewart Pipe Invitational: February 24 - March 4
2021 Mike Stewart Pipe Invitational: February 24 - March 3

Mike Stewart was the first to break the news.

"Good news for all you fin-footed freaks out there and those who might appreciate some of these most traditional forms of wave riding," wrote the nine-time world champion.

"There will be at least one day for bodyboarding and bodysurfing tournaments at Her Majesty's Pipeline for the next three winters."

In July 2017, Stewart and a group of wave riders launched a petition with 12 specific proposals that aimed to balance everyone's interests and include bodyboarding and bodysurfing on the sports calendar.

They argued that the Pipe Invitational featured, on average, four times more local Hawaiian residents than any other territory.

However, the sport of surfing had 375 permit hours on the North Shore, comparing to bodysurfing's nine hours, and bodyboarding's zero hours.

Apparently, the Department of Parks and Recreation accepted Stewart's petition and included bodyboarding in the official surf event calendar.

The Pipeline Invitational was last run at Ehukai Beach Park in 2017.

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