Sunset Pro to Kick Off 2014 World Tour
The Sunset Beach Pro celebrates its fifth anniversary
The Sunset Beach Pro will set a new standard for the World Tour and the sport as a whole in 2014, as it celebrates its fifth anniversary as the prestigious World Championship Tour Opener. With a packed field of the very best international athletes coming up against a wealth of local talent throughout the islands, the first showdown of the year will once again set the standard for high-performance standup paddlesurfing at its very best.
While Tour standouts such as three-time World Champion and two-time event winner Kai Lenny, Caio Vaz, 2012 World Champion Leco Salazar and Sean Poynter will be on a mission to start the year out on a high, local favorites such as Robin Johnston (who finished second last year at Sunset and has been Top 5 since the Tour's inception), Ikaika Kalama, Kala Alexander, and Aaron Napoleon will be looking to stand strong at home on Oahu’s fabled North Shore.
Also watch out for was last year’s breakout athlete at Sunset, Kekoa Auwae, who stunned the world with an incredible display of performance surfing. Another athlete to keep an eye on is the young Mo Freitas, who continues to assert his presence on Tour with standout performances.
However, as is always the case at this prestigious World Tour Opener, Sunset Beach ends up being the star of the show, so make sure not to miss this dramatic event unfold from February 8th – 16th, on Oahu’s Fabled North Shore.
The Turtle Bay Pro to kick off a stellar year for the women
Turtle Bay Resort will once again play host to the Turtle Bay Women’s Pro, the opening event of the Women’s World Tour that sees stops in Hawaii, Brazil, California and France.
In 2013, we saw an incredible Title Race that came down to the final heats of the final event of the year in France, as Nicole Pacelli, winner of the 2013 Turtle Bay Pro, came out on top to take the sport’s first Women’s World Title. Keep a lookout for Oahu's Vanina Walsh, and the breakout athlete of the year, Izzi Gomez from Florida, who stole the show in the last two events of 2013 with impressive victories.
One of the favorites for the Title, Candice Appleby finished in fourth in 2013, but is looking stronger and more determined than ever coming in to 2014, as she begins the hunt for the World Title. Other immense talents to look out for include Aline Adisaka from Brazil, Caroline Angibaud from France and Iballa Moreno from the Canary Islands, as well as local talents like Mariko Strickland from Kauai and Halie Harrison from Oahu.
Na Kama Kai Youth Challenge will step up in 2014
The Na Kama Kai Youth Challenge will be take on a new life in 2014 with an Official stop for the U16s at every stop on Tour this year. In Hawaii, Turtle Bay will once again host this spectacular showdown, as U16s from all over the globe will congregate at Turtle Bay for this unique showcase of the stars of the future.
Tribute to the Legends to celebrate ocean sports heritage
2014 will see the introduction of a new exhibition event featuring ocean sports' greats: the Tribute to the Legends, which will bring together leading figures from the ocean sports community and pioneers in the sport of SUP for water-based exhibition events, Talk Story and live music sessions at Turtle Bay.
The Sunset Beach Pro will see Brian Keaulana, Mel Pu’u, Titus Kinimaka and Archie Kalepa come together for a unique occasion hosted by Turtle Bay Resort, starting on February 7th, with the Talk Story and leading to exhibitions at both Sunset and Turtle Bay over the first weekend of the holding period.
Na Kama Kai Youth Clinic to give back to the North Shore
Our partnership with the non-profit Na Kama Kai now dates back to 2009, as Founder Duane DeSoto has developed the organization’s youth initiatives in the islands and we've taken the message around the world. In 2014, this initiative has been scaled up, as Na Kama Kai Clinics will be held in conjunction with all events across both the Standup World Tour and World Series.
The Sunset Beach Pro will feature a special Na Kama Kai clinic on the first Saturday of the holding period (Saturday, February 8th), as youth from the East and North Shores of Oahu will be given a unique opportunity to SUP, paddle outrigger canoes, shape traditional Alaia boards and learn about traditional Hawaiian story-telling in the company of the world’s best standup paddlers on the east side of Turtle Bay, in front of Ola’s Restaurant.
Waterman League Partners with Sustainable Coastlines
The Waterman League is proud to announce a new partnership with Sustainable Coastlines Hawaii, inspiring local communities statewide to take care of their coastlines through hands-on beach clean ups.
Our goal with this partnership is to leave the beach more pristine after the event than when it began, allowing our athletes, fans and the general public the opportunity to make a difference for the Beach Park we enjoy, as well as to inspire other communities around the world to do the same.
The beach clean up will take place on the last day of the holding period, at 3pm at Sunset Beach.
Full Social Schedule at Hang Ten and Surfer the Bar
Beyond the action on the water, there's a full schedule of social activities built out around this year’s Sunset Beach Pro, from an intense Opening Ceremony at Turtle Bay, to live music from ocean sports legends and a ‘Talk Story’ special at Surfer the Bar, all taking place on Friday, February 7th.
We then have another Talk Story Special with the young guns from Maui on Wednesday, February 12th, at Surfer the Bar, featuring Kai Lenny, Zane Schweitzer, Kody Kerbox, and Connor Baxter, followed by a special screening of the Look back Show from the 2013 Standup World Tour.
The week then ends with a World Tour Party at Surfer the Bar, featuring DJ Baumer and impromptu live music sets expected from some of ocean sports music greats.
Next up: Brazil and Abu Dhabi Grand Slams
While Sunset Beach will kick off the Standup World Tour, the Standup World Series will commence in Brazil at the end of March, in conjunction with Stop 2 of the Standup World Tour.
Both the Tour and the Series will then move on to Abu Dhabi in the U.A.E for the Abu Dhabi All Stars Grand Slam, which will build on the success of last year’s exhibition event for a high-profile World Series and World Tour Grand Slam in the heart of the Middle East.