ASP Board Finalizes International Bases, Independent Directors and ASP World Tour Format

HUNTINGTON BEACH, California/USA - In addition to the record-breaking US Open of Surfing last week, Huntington Beach played host to the ASP Board of Directors meeting, where the ASP’s new international bases were determined, the seven-person Board was completed and the new 36-man ASP World Tour format was ratified.

Formerly headquartered in Southern California, ASP International moved headquarters to Australia’s Gold Coast in 1999. Now, with key staff and strategists all over the world, the ASP Board of Directors has opted to transition its International headquarters to three main offices: Huntington Beach (USA), Hossegor (FRA) and Coolangatta (AUS).

“The move to transition our headquarters to more international bases was a relatively easy and logical decision,” Richard Grellman, Chairman of the ASP Board, said. “We have our key people based in Southern California, the Gold Coast and the South of France when they are not on the road, and the rise of telecommunications technology over the past decade has made doing business internationally an effective process. The Gold Coast office will remain as a back office and place of operations for the start of the year, but the addition of Huntington Beach and Hossegor ensures that our key staff are in close proximity to two of the major industry hubs.”

Independent Board of Directors

Last October, the ASP Board of Directors opted to alter its structure of an Independent Chairman, two event representatives and two surfer representatives to also include two Independent Directors.

In February, the ASP Board of Directors welcomed Angus Murray to the panel. Murray, who has worked with Formula 1 sponsorship, online/new media and mobile marketing splits his time between Europe, Australia and the USA, and has been a strong voice in the push towards new media prospects.

“Owned 50:50 by supportive event promoters and world class dedicated athletes, the ASP International Board of Directors has strong and solid roots from which to continue assisting all stakeholders in growing the sport,” Murray said. “Full time live webcasts and broadcasts, instant replays and live scoring are available to recreational surfers and armchair enthusiasts around the world. Technical advances; surfers as athletes and icons; media coverage including full time live webcasts, statistics, scores and broadcasts combine to ensure this compelling and professional sport being played out in exotic locations, can be accessed just about anywhere in the world – this is a very exciting time to be part of it.”

Last week, the ASP Board finalized its seven-member panel with the appointment of Kathy Kendrick. Kendrick formerly served as Vice President of European Legal Affairs for the Walt Disney Company based in Paris before playing an integral part in the creation of DreamWorks SKG alongside Steven Spielberg, Jeffrey Katzenberg and David Geffen.

“I’m excited and honored to be welcomed to the ASP Board of Directors,” Kendrick said. “The sport of surfing has exponentially built momentum ever since former President Wayne ‘Rabbit’ Bartholomew activated his “Dream Tour” vision which was the catalyst resulting in today’s version: athletes of the highest caliber performing surfing of the highest level in exotic locales for a global audience in the millions. I have been very impressed with the recent developments made by the sport’s administrators and am eager to add to surfing’s development.”

ASP World Tour 36-Man Format

Finally, the ASP Board of Directors ratified the proposal of a new 36-man ASP World Tour competition format which was approved by the ASP Technical Committee during July’s Billabong Pro Jeffreys Bay.

Chaired by ASP International CEO Brodie Carr, the ASP Technical Committee (Tech Comm) consists of ASP World Tour Head Judge Richie Porta, ASP International Judge Pritamo Ahrendt, ASP World Tour Manager Renato Hickel, Surfer Representatives Mick Fanning, Adrian Buchan and Kieren Perrow as well as Event Representative Graham Stapelberg.

From the mind of long-time ASP International Judge and new ASP Tech Comm member, Pritamo Ahrendt, the newly-approved 36-man ASP World Tour competition format is as follows:

Round 1: 12 three-man heats, 1st advances to Round 3, 2nd and 3rd to Round 2
Round 2: 12 man-on-man heats, 1st to Round 3, 2nd is Equal 25th place
Round 3: 12 man-on-man heats, 1st to Round 4, 2nd is Equal 13th place
Round 4: Four 3-man heats, 1st advances to Quarterfinals, 2nd and 3rd to Round 5
Round 5: Four man-on-man heats, 1st advances to Quarterfinals, 2nd is Equal 9th
Quarterfinals: Four man-on-man heats, 1st advances to Semifinals, 2nd is Equal 5th
Semifinals: Two man-on-man heats, 1st advances to Finals, 2nd is Equal 3rd
Final: One man-on-man heat, 1st and 2nd

The Hurley Pro Trestles, running from September 12 – 18, 2010, will be the first event to institute this format.