Red, White, and Wave-Pool Blue

International teams from ISA World Surfing Games stop by The Cove

Surfing is slotted and set for an oceanic debut in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, but the longterm format ideal for future Olympic Games, and internationally-minded events in general, is still a big unknown. Will competition remain in the ocean? Or will a wave pool hum in the background as the national anthem plays for the 2048 gold-medal winner? As this year’s ISA World Surfing Games began in May, a handful of teams delayed their route to Biarritz, France, to test out The Cove at Wavegarden’s R&D center in the Basque Country. The assembly-line rights are credited in more than one language here as an efficient tool to train a team’s athletes. Will that kind of replicable regimen ever make its way to an Olympic heat?