COOLANGATTA, Queensland/Australia (Thursday, October 20, 2011) – Yesterday, ASP World Tour Manager and multi-decade veteran of the the ASP offered the first portion of his insights into the radical transitions that the sport has undergone in the past 24 months. Spawned in the ASP Board Meetings of October 2009, these transitions dealt specifically with the system for determining the world’s best surfers who would ultimately decide the undisputed ASP World Champion. In August of 2010, we reduced the number of elite-level surfers from 45 down to 34 and introduced the current 36-man event format. In December of 2010, we used a bridge qualifying criteria which took a select number of surfers directly off the ASP World Title rankings and another select number of surfers directly off the ASP World Rankings.
Commencing in 2011, this transition took full flight with the launching of the ASP World Rankings and the rolling 52-week determination of an individual surfer’s ranking. In August of this year, the ASP completed its first official rotation of the ASP Top 34 with newcomers Gabriel Medina (BRA), 17, Miguel Pupo (BRA), 19, John John Florence (HAW), 19, and Travis Logie (ZAF), 32, becoming full-fledged members of the ASP Top 34 beginning with the Hurley Pro at Trestles. The ASP Technical Committee, comprised of surfers, events and ASP administrators, has been monitoring the situation closely and will continue to do so. Renato Hickel was kind enough to offer his perspective on a number of questions that will be provided in segments and here’s the second one. This…is the story…
Attendance and Results of Established Top 34 at Prime and Star Events
Another important aspect of the “conditions to qualify” and “number of new surfers” with this first Rotation is the much greater attendance of the established Top 34 into the Prime and even Star events in this first half of the year. Such a high number has never been experienced since the inception of the two-tier system back in 1992!
Not only that, but the Top 34 dominated the Prime events results, collecting important points with wins in six out of eight events (Muniz, Hobgood, Otton, Wilson, Gudauskas and Slater – 75%!) and a number of Semifinal and Quarterfinal berths. This all made it difficult for newcomers to break into the elite level of competition, but this is what we want – THE VERY BEST SURFERS ON TOUR. If the surfers aspiring to be part of the Top 34 cannot beat the established Top 34 in Prime and Star events, they will not collect the necessary points to make it into the Top 34 come the next Rotation, and it is indicative that they are not ready yet to be part of such an Elite group of surfers.
If you missed yesterday’s installment, check out The Assessment Part I