Tiago Pires: a surf star in a football world

Surfing is becoming a very popular sport in many coastal countries. In the near future, it will also become attractive to inland nations, as successful artificial wave solutions spread quickly.

SurferToday readers in Portugal have discovered and sent out a very special photo. "Record" is one of the best selling daily sports newspaper in Portugal and football/soccer is king in more than 80% of the pages.

In page three, Tiago Pires, the Dream Tour surfer, appears riding a massive tube in an ad payed by his local sponsor TMN, a mobile phone company. The huge photo also carries a caption where the sponsor congratulates the "Portuguese Tiger" for his third place in the 2011 Quiksilver Pro Gold Coast, in Australia.

The ad is surely not cheap, but the investment will have its return. Surfing is growing rapidly in Portugal and is being featured in national TV's prime time news block. 'Saca' is in superb form and a true news story about his good result is displayed in a large article placed in the last page of "Record".

The same surfing growth is being registered in Central and South America, for example, where countries like Chile, Peru, Panama and Colombia seem to produce the next big surfing stars and the next outstanding surf spots. That's good news, indeed.