Lennox Head rejects Championship Tour event

February 4, 2021 | Surfing
Lennox Head: one of the most popular point breaks in New South Wales | Photo: WSL

The Australian seaside village of Lennox Head will not hold a Championship Tour (CT) event at Lennox Head, New South Wales.

The Ballina Shire Council rejected a World Surf League (WSL) competition at the iconic point break.

WSL wanted to add an extra venue to this year's Australian CT leg, but the authorities voted against it after several protests from local surfers and residents.

The decision not to provide support for the event was based on the risk of spreading Covid-19 and the negative impacts caused by overcrowding during the holiday period and loss of amenity.

The Ballina Shire Council also states that a private entity can't use the local surfing reserve to the exclusion of all other users.

Finally, the government notes that the WSL did not submit an actual application for the event, and there hasn't been a proper community consultation.

The plan of the WSL was to run a men's and women's surfing competition from April 1-11, 2021.

In the extraordinary meeting held at the Ballina Shire Council, two councilors voted against and one for the event to take place.

Mayor David Wright voted in favor.

He said junior surfers from the Le-Ba Boardriders club were going to receive wildcards for the event, and the region would get $10 million from food expenditure and accommodation.

No-Go, Version 2.0

But the mayor's vote was not enough.

At the meeting, a local surfer even threatened with a protest paddle-out if the competition was allowed to get underway.

The World Surf League had previously consulted with local surfers and representatives from key community groups, but there was never unanimous support.

The professional surfing circuit was planning to get a charter flight with athletes and crew from the United Stated to Sydney and then follow a 14-day quarantine.

But the local surfing community was not happy with the idea of having foreign surfers taking over their surf break for 17 days.

This is not the first time Lennox Head gets a no-go as a CT venue.

In 2008, Rip Curl proposed a Search contest at the legendary surf spot, but the proposal was rejected.

The 2021 Championship Tour will visit Bells Beach, Margaret River, and the Gold Coast from April 1 to May 13.

WSL is hoping to add a fourth location to the Australian CT leg in 2022.

SurferToday.com uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Learn more on our About section.