Home > Contests, Girls Surfing, WSL > Ballito Pro Welcomes O’Neill as Presenting Sponsor Going into Sixth Decade in June

Ballito Pro Welcomes O’Neill as Presenting Sponsor Going into Sixth Decade in June

March 19th, 2019

Two-time event champion Jordy Smith (Durban) will be one of the favourites for the 2019 Ballito Pro pres. by O’Neill men’s title at Willard Beach in KwaDukuza in July Photo: WSL / Poullenot

Events:
Men – Ballito Pro pres. by O’Neill (QS10,000)
Women – Ballito Women’s Pro pres. by O’Neill (QS1,000)
Juniors – O’Neill Pro Junior (JQS1,000) for 18-and-under Men & Women
Venue: Willard Beach, Ballito, KwaDukuza, South Africa
Dates: June 27 – 7 July, 2019

The Ballito Pro, the world’s longest running professional surfing event, welcomes global wetsuit and apparel giant O’Neill as the new presenting sponsor when it enters its sixth decade of attracting the world’s top surfers to compete in South Africa in June.

The Ballito Pro presented by O’Neill will again be a key event on the World Surf League (WSL) schedule, showcasing the best juniors, women and men in the surf at Willard Beach in KwaDukuza from June 27-July 7 when it will be the cornerstone of the continent’s biggest beach festival.

For the eleventh consecutive year the region will host a Qualifying Series (QS) 10,000 rated event for men with the highest possible points on the international rankings at stake.

The women will again display their talent in the QS1,000 Ballito Women’s Pro pres. by O’Neill while the inaugural O’Neill Pro Junior includes events for men and women aged 18-and-under at Ballito for the first time.

“As the KwaDukuza Municipality we are once again jovial to be hosting the renowned Ballito Pro,” said the Mayor of KwaDukuza, Cllr Ricardo Mthembu. “We wish to thank O’Neill for taking the baton of being the new presenting sponsor – thank you for believing in this magnificent event, which has enormously succeeded in its task to being a nation building platform and a catalyst for introducing this sport to rural communities.”

This year’s edition will be bigger and better than ever with O’Neill excited to be involved in one of the planet’s icon watersports events.

“O’Neill is very proud to be coming on board as the presenting sponsor for the Ballito Pro,” said Paul Canning, O’Neill South Africa Brand Director. “The event has such an amazing history in South African surfing and has been an instrumental platform in getting our local professional surfers onto the world surfing stage for over five decades. We look forward to building a long relationship with the KwaDukuza Municipality and presenting another world class surfing festival.”

Last year’s men’s field included a dozen of the world’s elite WSL Championship Tour (CT) surfers and was won by Brazilian Peterson Crisanto who, along with runner-up Jack Freestone (AUS), went on to qualify for the prestigious 2019 CT thanks to the huge haul of ranking points they both earned at Ballito.

The 112-man entry for the event provides local WSL Africa members with invaluable experience competing against the world’s best, along with opportunities to earn prize-money and coveted rankings points which assist them in gaining entry to the higher rated events internationally, and also count towards the annual WSL Africa title.

Competitors in the Ballito Women’s Pro pres. by O’Neill also earn prize-money and points on both the international and regional rankings while the18-and-under competitors in the O’Neill Pro Junior will be striving for the prestigious event titles and selection for the WSL Africa squad that is invited to the annual World Junior Championship.

“It’s been such a fantastic 10 years with Ballito and the KDM Municipality, we have grown up together,” said WSL Africa Operations Manager, Colin Fitch. “And huge thanks to O’Neill for stepping up to perpetuate the legacy of this icon event that has brought the world’s best surfers to our shores for the past 50 years and continues to provide WSL Africa members, juniors, women and men, with a springboard onto the world tour.

“Ballito’s surroundings and great winter weather are so similar to Hawaii’s North Shore – the surfers love the event. The friendliness of the community, the way the great setup for the competitors and spectators blends into the landscape, the clean beaches and great waves combine to produce a truly a magical event.”

The Ballito Pro Surf Festival kicks off with the O’Neill Pro Junior from June 27-30 before the crown jewel of the festival, the QS10,000 Ballito Pro pres. by O’Neill, and the QS1,000 Ballito Women’s Pro pres. by O’Neill take centre stage from Monday to Sunday, July 1-7.

Alongside the surfing, visitors will be spoiled for choice with non-stop activities providing even more entertainment throughout the Ballito festival site. South Africa’s hottest musical acts appealing to all tastes – rock, pop, hip hop, kwaito, electro and dance – will be performing live on Salt Rock Beach over the last weekend. Beach and extreme sports, culinary contests as well as quality retail and food stalls will captivate visitors to this coastal holiday highlight.

For more information, visit:
Website: www.theballitopro.com
Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/theballitopro/
Twitter: www.twitter.com/TheBallitoPro
Instagram: www.instagram.com/TheBallitoPro
Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/c/theballitopro
Snapchat: Username – TheBallitoPro

The Ballito Pro pres. by O’Neill is proudly supported by the KwaDukuza Municipality, O’Neill, Capitec, Casio G-Shock, 5FM, Monster Energy, Zigzag Surfing Magazine, North Coast Courier, SMG MINI, World Surf League (WSL) and Surfing South Africa (SSA).

ENDS

About O’Neill
Jack O’Neill opened the world’s first surf shop in 1952 out of a garage off the Great Highway, San Francisco. He started out shaping boards and selling wax, eventually experimenting with insulated surf vests to extend sessions in the frigid waters of Northern California. This thought process lead to the creation of the neoprene wetsuit, an invention of Jack’s that changed the surf world forever. The shop later moved to Santa Cruz and went full force into the wetsuit business. That same progressive spirit still drives the company forward today. We at O’Neill strive to innovate, evolve, and produce timeless products to benefit those who live the surf lifestyle.

About the WSL
The World Surf League (WSL) is dedicated to celebrating the world’s best surfing on the world’s best waves through a variety of best-in-class audience platforms. The organization, headquartered in Santa Monica, is a global sport with regional offices in Australia, Africa, North America, South America, Hawaii, Japan and Europe.

The WSL has been championing the world’s best surfing since 1976, annually running more than 180 global events across the Men’s and Women’s Championship Tours, the Big Wave Tour, Qualifying Series, Junior and Longboard Championships, as well as the WSL Big Wave Awards. The League possesses a deep appreciation for the sport’s rich heritage while promoting progression, innovation and performance at the highest levels, and in doing so crowns the undisputed Men’s and Women’s World Champions across all tours.

Showcasing the world’s best surfing on its digital platform at WorldSurfLeague.com, the WSL has a passionate global fan base with millions tuning in to see world-class athletes like Kelly Slater, Stephanie Gilmore, Tyler Wright, John Florence, Lakey Peterson, Paige Alms, Kai Lenny, Steven Sawyer, Soleil Errico, Carissa Moore, Gabriel Medina, Courtney Conlogue and more battle on the most dynamic field of play of any global sport.

For more information, please visit WorldSurfLeague.com

About Surfing South Africa
Surfing South Africa is recognised governing body for surfing in South Africa by the Department of Sport and Recreation. SSA is a member of the South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (SASCOC) and the International Surfing Association (ISA).

 

Issued on behalf of:

WSL Africa
Contact: Colin Fitch – Operations Manager
Tel: 021 534 5738
Email: cfitch@worldsurfleague.com

Compiled & Distributed by:

Life’s a Beach Communications
Mobile: +27 (0) 82 423 1964
Email: lifesabeach@mweb.co.za

KwaDukuza Municipality and Organizers of the Ballito Pro Festival
Contact: Collette Bundy
Mobile: 072 287 9839
Email: collettebundy0@gmail.com

For more information about the beach festival, music concerts and culinary contests please contact:

Olivia Jones Communications
Cell: 083 653 1720
Email: media@oliviajones.co.za

 

 

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