Just this very morning the World Surf League announced they’ll be holding an “Air Invitational” in France during October’s Quiksilver Pro. 18 aerialists will get the invite to the big stage, the group will be a mix of free surfers, ‘CT competitors, and whoever fans vote in. Some of the most progressive and electrifying aerialists are already committed to compete–Chippa Wilson, Filipe Toledo, Mikey Wright and Albee Layer are locked in.
Recently retired ‘CT veteran Josh Kerr, who once dominated the long defunct Surfing Airshow Series and pioneer of the Kerrupt Flip, will direct the Air Invitational. “My early career and surf inspirations were all about these air events, and the guys pushing the progression of surfing,” said Kerr. “Now to be a part of bringing the air events back at the highest level of our sport, it’s very special to me. I’m a huge fan of the talent right now, so I can’t wait to see the guys send it in France!”
“Crowds love the athleticism and creativity of aerial surfing, and so do the surfers,” said Sophie Goldschmidt, WSL CEO. “Many say the future of surfing is in the air, and WSL is thrilled to be working with Josh to return a fan and surfer favorite into the competitive mix.”
Prior to the event, Chippa Wilson and Albee Layer will hold an “Air Exhibition” in Lemoore, Calif. during the Surf Ranch Pro in September. Layer recently spent some time at the surf ranch dialing in an air section at the pool with Kerr. Without the stress of scores and/or the effect that has on the plague of safety surfing on the ‘CT, Wilson and Layer’s air exhibition just might steal the show.
“I’m super hyped to be involved in the Air Invitational and Surf Ranch Pro. When I was a grom it was my goal to be able to surf in the air shows,” said Wilson. “They never seemed like a competition; it was loose, and all the lads looked like they were having a blast. I can’t wait for the boys to mix it up with the best air guys on the Championship Tour!”
Can we lobby for a Dane Reynolds and Noa Deane invite? What other aerialists would you like to see in the event?
Read the WSL’s press release here.