The Plot Thickens

posted by / News / July 31, 2009


Further news of a breakaway pro tour surfaces

Speculation is always dangerous. Real estate in California circa 2007. Birthing a new surf brand in 2009. Posting 16 suggestions for surfers on “Kelly’s New Tour” on this website last week. All dangerous. But ultimately educational. In the case of the later speculatory gamble, we learned that the blogosphere is very passionate about the breakaway tour that is allegedly being spearheaded by Slater and his manager Terry Hardy. We like that. But as of late, no one has had a lot of fact to run with. Today, however, Australia’s Stab Magazine posted a link to an in-depth probing of the new tour, written by one of their penmen Fred Pawle. It is by far the most informative piece constructed on the subject yet. If you care — and we know many of you do — follow this link to the story, published today, on “The Australian,” a Sydney-based online newspaper. —Andrew Lewis

Tags: , , , ,

Related Posts:

  • john

    What will happen if Kelly decides to hold an event in Hawaii ??? Fresh squeezed politics up the ass ! Have fun with that one boys…

  • Jim

    Sounds awesome. I just found some very enlightening info on this thing:

  • Not Impressed

    Bottom line: if Kelly leaves without the rest of the best (Parko, Fanning, Taj, Jordy, etc.), then I really do not care. Kelly is always a bit of a spotlight hoarder and if he can’t get the rest of the 45 to go with him, he’ll look like a moron. And I’ve been a Kelly fan since Day 1. Sounds like his refusal to work with the ASP and his refusal to work with the other surfers has isolated him and if he wants to take his bat and ball and go elsewhere. Fine. The most important thing is keeping the best surfers all together as a group so an undisuputed world champ can be crowned. Without that, surfing falls into the same sad league as boxing, skating, snowboarding, etc., etc.

  • question?

    Question…so if Brett Simpson…who won the US Open last week…qualifies by the end of the year…then he doesn’t get a crack at being world champ next season?!??!

    This is bullshit man! You have to let the surfers know a year in advance to at least be fair about what they’re competing on.

    That said, it sounds like a terrible idea anyway.

  • Mik

    I can understand the desire for Surfers to make big money. Awesome. But the WTC is primarily carried by Billabong, and the other major players. Quiksilver is one, but in proportion to what their sales were believed to be, the contribution wasn’t proportional up front—until you add in Kelly’s salary which adds lots of credibility to whatever position they take. Mainly, it pisses everyone that golf dorks make millions right down to the top 300, but only a hand full of surfers are making big money. I hope everyone approaches this level-headed, and searches for a way to improve this reality. Personally, I totally dig the ASP, and I also dig having surfers deeply involved in its admin. The day it is handed over to purely bean-counter CEOs, will be the day the fun gets lost in ego driven decisions that tangent away from understanding the pro-surfer mentality. Not that that mentality couldn’t use a little more professionalism, in terms of training harder?

  • le

    maybe im getting a bit old for this shit and the vary conspiracy theories that flow but kelly has a horror year faces losing the title (and number 10) and hauls this up right in the middle of parko’s stellar season, who knows maybe kelly is bigger than surfing itself now? maybe he always has been …… ala slater gate
    dont get me started on boxing promoters…..

  • alex

    you better believe those other surfers are going to follow him. 1.5 million dollar purse. you would have to be an idiot not to. sponsors arent paying them enough to stay, if they want to go they will just ditch the sponsors they have and pick new ones up on the other side of the fence. question is who will be the chosen surfers??? i would like to see parko, bobby, jordy, dane, ai, hobgoods, fanning, adriano, knox, taj… i mean those are the main title contenders anyways

  • Truth

    Kelly continues to hoard away the limelight as Parko’s star rises. Face it, Kelly is trying to leverage all the success he’s earned from the CT, and cash in on his own tour. It’s a terrible concept and even worse that Kelly would lend his name to it and stir up so much controversy amidst Parko’s world title run. If I were Joel, I’d be pissed off.

  • Illuminati

    Check this interview Lewis had with Mr. Slater in May of 2008 – while he was in the midst of his record-breaking run towards a ninth title. At the time, Kelly had no reason to be vindictive towards the ASP – yet he laid out his grievances.

  • So true

    Truth you hit it on the spot. Kelley is so competitve that he cant stand the fact the Joel is smoking him and he is trying to drive all the attention his way. This is lame of Kelley and more lame of all of us talking about it because the guy is getting what he wants and that’s the attention. I guess it really might be time for Kelley to set off in the sunset we might just be better off with out him?

  • Please

    This new tour thing is a bunch of BS! Hopefully we can stop talking about it move on a focus on what we have and make it better. And by the way Parko is on wis way to a world title and that’s the story! Kelly who?

  • maharichie

    Why would kelly want attention? not sure what you all mean by that. Are you presuming there’s something behind the attention that he wants? If so what do you think that is? Seems to me his motives are to give pro surfers the kind of money other pro sports get. If there’s something else behind the attention…. I don’t know… he doesn’t seem as shallow as that.

  • Newport B

    It is about time that the judging of surfing is taking a step forward and rewarding innovative maneuvers. Competitive surfing has been stuck in a rut for the past 35 years and needs this. This is good old American ingenuity at its finest giving the world a run for its money in the advancement of competition.

  • Kenny

    The 1.5 million prize money per contest alone will guarantee alot of attention for the “new” tour. When the contenders from the ASP see lesser talented surfers earning $40k just to show up and over $100k to the winner they will slowly migrate for the money.

    The first ones to bolt will be the non-title contenders that are struggling to make $5k a contest. And if major sponsors like Red Bull, Mountain Dew, and Target start paying top sponsorship dollars the “new” tour will be sucessfull.

    ESPN’s part in the tour is not as big as the money. They tried to mainstream bowling the same way and it really has not taken off like they hoped or are saying they can do for the “money” tour.

    Cash talks.

  • Pete

    The problem with the ASP is that the tour is disjointed and lacks unity. Each contest is typically poorly webcasted, and only watched by the diehards. Not to mention that it’s funded purely by action sports retailers, who, as a group, are trying just to stay afloat (Arena football?). The only way to resurrect competitive surfing is to take a look at a model like the PGA tour. It isn’t Callaway and Titleist that are paying for the $10M purses at the Majors (although they do continue to pay endorsement salaries), it’s the mainstream advertisers like Lexus, IBM, and American Express that make the tour possible. These brands don’t get involved unless you’re primetime broadcast on NBC, CBS, ABC, or ESPN (Fox?). Kelly’s involvement can hardly be seen as selfish, however. Without the upper eschelon of surfers on board, a new tour isn’t even possible. What would Parko care if he was deemed world champion, but had $3Mil in his pocket after the tour instead of $300K. Not to mention he would have notoriety with a much broader audience and as a result be a much more endorsable pro athlete. Free wetsuits are cool, but being able to support your family on surfing is cooler.

  • Kooks Rules!!

    It’s all about the money………..Oh it should be for the love of surfing…Blah, blah, blah!!! Bottom line is the top surfers should get paid why should the sponsers get all of the cash? They have been making millions off these guys for years.

    And if Parko goes on to win the title this year he’ll be the first one in line cause once he gets the title it’s all about the retirement fund.

    Face facts the CT is just plain boring and needs a facelift and if they are not going to make the changes well that’s on them.

  • phil hart

    If they have another tour,which title will be recognized.I think it will make both tours fall down

  • http://surfingmag jason

    I agree with Mik. Surfing is being pushed into a sport instead a lifestyle which is ok. In fact who better to take it to the next level than Slater? Of course he will need the top 45 to follow him but lets open up the doors to all markets and run it year around on a major network. Shit why not have a dedicated channel…slater tv?? Everyone loves a bad ass surf vid so imagine national and yearly coverage of all your favorite surfers going head to head for a big purse.. Whos watching now???


  • Butch

    You kidding me. How many billions of dollars is the surf industry worth? Billions a year and first place for a contest is US$30,000. It is broken. You have surfers like Bede and Bobby unsponsored. Keeping the riff-raff (like nearly everyone outside the top 10) out of events seems like an improvement to me.

  • marsh

    The Soul Of Its Own World Tour
    Coming To A Sphere Near You. 4 Seasons, 10 events, 8 Paddle in events, 2 per season plus 2 Special Death Defying Tow in events!
    32 competitors, The Complete 16, capable of all & more, plus the top 12 qualifiers from the ASP tour & 4 invitees from God knows where, round out the 32 who will compete in the most challenging conditions our planet can provide. Athletes, not surviving to see who makes fire first or able to gather better than the rest on a Hollywood set. No, these are unlike others who challenge themselves & the elements, not on track or field, but against the Supreme Force, the Giver of Life, Our Mother Ocean. A plethora of potential sites will be at hand with permits in place. Modern tech. allows our athletes to be flown to their accommodations, whether on land or at sea, depending on location to meet the coming challenge. Contestants on call, ready & mobile at the moment. No waiting period, it’ll be pumping, and the world will be watching, as we search our planets’ surface for its strongest pulse, its unscripted pure energy, to be tapped like never before in a competitive format. Where will our athletes be swept off to next? What exotic isle, dangerous reef pass, or unknown slab will test the best? We’ll take you to places where dreams are made & broken. Wave riders from all points will froth at the arenas, pushing pearls shoreward. And of course Current Footage will be available on demand.
    As the Endless Summer touched a spark, so will the Soul Of Its Own World Tour, creating an audience unsure what’s up, but unable to deny it. Surfing, the creator & father of action sports, and soon to be spokesman of a planet gone astray, will usher in a wave of consciousness that only a surfer understands.
    The ASP will be what it always was, what it is, proving grounds for the best competitive surfing & will continue to spawn & develop future World Champions. So calm down boys, it’s all there, better than ever. The ASP will update & integrate the Q.S. 100 vying to become 1 of the 12 disciples on next years World Tour as only ESPN can bring you.
    32 competitors. I’d like to see the bottom 16, including invitees, go 4-man, 4- 45min-1hour heats. The hassle is important, brings out character, creativity, the interference possibilities, the bump & grind, and when its pumping, the playing field expands, plenty for all. Remember these boys are professionals. The victors will pit themselves against #9 to 16, so impersonal. When its game on 4-man rules continue, its called Action Sports, with 4– 1hour heats. 8hrs. in, you are left with the cream for day 2. Might be boring live, if not a purist, but with slight delay we got chicken dinner. Live cast a must, in ESPN we trust that this will be more than another sporting event wedged into the grid, where’s Tesla, wave master. To be Hollygood takes a special sort. Do you see a problem here? Na, me neither. This is their last chance to paddle out, it’s hot & glassy, & there’s one coming their way. No scores called here, keep your own score & give it your best shot, watch your ass & keep your head up, quit thinking you need to know something, you got a watch, that’s all you need. It’s no longer what you need, you need only to tear it up! You’ll know who won soon enough. So cut the crap fools, school’s out, it’s your J.O.B. join our brotherhood, the Brotherhood Of Surfing. Well that might be to much, depends on the fence you sit on, I guess.
    1st place Tour Champion receives 500k for his efforts
    $250k You figure out the points.
    2nd 100k =3rd 50k =5th 25k =9th 15k 10k for the rest
    That’s a 100k all expense paid trip around the world for the rest, if you got the nuts to tow, with incentives, for showing up. If you think you’re worth more than that, let’s see it!
    OK, that’s 830k, plenty enough prizes for the 1st go round. That leaves 670k per event to do things right & look towards the future.
    So what say you, flick off, or is it our time?
    Brought to you by

  • Coy Gerster

    Guter Post, vielen Dank.

  • Frank Schlaht

    Roll on the set Another great post.