SANTA CRUZ, Calif., Aug. 21, 2014 – For decades now, one staple of late fall in Santa Cruz is the Coldwater Classic at Steamer Lane. Last year ushered in a new format unlike the various incarnations the event has seen previously. That same format returns in 2014 with the second annual O'Neill Coldwater Classic Invitational.
The Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) Specialty Event, which will take place on two days of optimal conditions during a window of Oct. 28th to Nov. 1st, will give 16 unsponsored professional surfers the chance of a lifetime, an O'Neill Wetsuits contract worth $50,000 in travel incentives and contest fees to chase their World Championship Tour (WCT) dreams.
"The 2013 O’Neill Coldwater Classic was a complete success! O’Neill could not be more happy with the outcome, said O'Neill Wetsuits Marketing and Team Manager Shane Skelton. "We not only got great waves during the event, we also picked up an amazing surfer for Team O’Neill in Torrey Meister. We look forward to discovering another untapped talent at the 2014 event."
The 16-man field of competitors will include 15 invited unsponsored surfers and one wildcard determined by the public via an online vote. Wildcard video submissions will be accepted Sept. 1-19 at http://www.oneill.com/cwc/. The public will be able to vote on finalists Sept. 30 through Oct. 6.
What sets this event apart is what is on the line. Sponsorships are critical in a surfer's mission to make the WCT. Last year, Torrey Meister earned the title and complete year of O'Neill sponsor support.
"I've seen my dreams come to life since winning the O'Neill Coldwater Classic last year," said Meister who is currently sitting 32nd on the ASP World Qualifying Series (WQS) rankings. "I've gotten to pay off debt from last year and focus on surfing and making heats. I don't know what I'd be doing this year if it weren't for winning the event. Having O'Neill's support has been tremendous. Not just the financial backing, but having people stoked to watch you, to help you dig deeper when you need a score. It doesn't feel like a sponsorship, it's more personal than that. I call them really good friends now."
Like Meister, one surfer will not only earn the 2014 title, but a yearlong sponsorship from the first American surf brand, O'Neill. With an estimated value of $50,000 USD, the grand prize winner will receive a travel, event and expense budget to compete in at least seven of the ASP World Qualifying Series events in pursuit of qualifying for the World Championship Tour and a personal videographer, at specific events and locations, to document the thrill of victory (or agony of defeat) with a minimum of six video segments during the 2014 competition year. O'Neill, the originator of the wetsuit, will also throw in a hefty arsenal of the best wetsuits through an O'Neill Wetsuits sponsorship, as well as, boardshorts and apparel.
Since 1987, the O'Neill Coldwater Classic has been Northern California's premier professional surfing event held at Steamer Lane in Santa Cruz. "The Lane," with its natural ancient Roman stadium like setting with steep, vertical cliffs overlooking the fabled right point break, is perhaps the best spectator venue for a surf contest to be found anywhere in the world.
Learn more and follow all of the action at www.oneill.com/cwc/ and tag #oneillcwc
Special thanks to sponsors and event partners Nexen Tire, Futures Fins, Watermans Sunscreen, Flips Audio, Banzai Bowls, On a Mission, Hotel Paradox, Cruzio Internet, East Side Eatery and Mulcoy Travel for supporting the 2014 O'Neill Coldwater Classic Invitational.
O'Neill, the original California surf, snow and lifestyle brand, was founded in 1952 when a young man named Jack O'Neill took his unstoppable passion for surfing and used it to battle Mother Nature. Jack's initial vision of producing functional and innovative board riding products continues to lie at the core of everything the company does. From the first neoprene surf wetsuit and board leash to the world's first stitchless board shorts. O'Neill will always be committed to growing its reputation as one of the world's leading youth lifestyle brands based on being the First Name in the water.
While many things have changed since those humble beginnings, Jack’s initial vision of producing functional and innovative board riding products continues to lie at the core of everything the company does. O’Neill’s core values — innovation in style and technology — have seen the brand devote itself wholeheartedly to the evolution of the action sports lifestyle. From the first ever neoprene wetsuit and leash, to the world’s first stitchless boardshorts and range of groundbreaking wearable electronics, O’Neill’s progressive spirit will always drive the company forward. For more information, please visit www.oneill.com/wetsuits.
In 1960, SURFER Magazine began as the original. After a long history of delivering provocative and insightful editorial features, revealing interviews and award winning state-of-the-art photography, SURFER remains the authoritative voice of the surfing world and thus earned the moniker “the bible of the sport.” The SURFER brand has also grown to include Surfermag.com, Fantasy Surfer, and the SURFER message boards. All of these assets combine to make the SURFER network the most current and reliable channel of information to the surf community. The magazine is published by TEN: The Enthusiast Network, which reaches more than 22-million active sports enthusiasts through an integrated network of magazines, online properties, events and television programming. To learn more, visit www.surfermag.com.
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