WILDCARDS NAMED FOR O’NEILL COLD WATER CLASSIC AND OAKLEY PRO JUNIOR ASP NORTH AMERICA CHAMPIONSHIPS

Thursday, October 29, 2009

SANTA CRUZ, Calif., Oct. 29, 2009 – Wildcards have been named for the $145,000 Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) World Qualifying Series (WQS) 6-Star Prime O’Neill Cold Water Classic and $15,000 Grade-3 Oakley Pro Junior ASP North America Championships which return to Steamer Lane, Santa Cruz, Calif. Nov. 2-8, 2009. The two events offer crucial ASP ratings points to professional surfers looking to qualify for the World Tour or the World Junior Championships. With major points and prize money on the line, a wildcard is a coveted asset to receive.

The 2009 O’Neill Cold Water Classic bolsters an international field of 128 of some of the best professional surfers in the world including World Tour standouts Adriano de Souza (BRA), Timmy Reyes (Huntington Beach, CA), Jordy Smith (ZAF), Roy Powers (HAW) and Nathaniel Curran (Oxnard, CA), top North America WQS ratings leader and 2009 $100,000 U.S. Open Champion Brett Simpson (Huntington Beach, CA) and Dusty Payne (HAW).

Wildcards into the Round of 96 of the main event were awarded to event ambassador and Santa Cruz local Jason “Ratboy” Collins and 16-year-old “SURFER Magazine Hot 100” ripper Luke Davis (Capistrano Beach, CA). Matt Meola (HAW) also received a wildcard, but will enter the contest in the first round, the Round of 128. A local trial on the first day of competition will award two Santa Cruz locals wildcards into the event.

The Oakley Pro Junior ASP North America Championships is also a significant event in terms of points and prize purse. With a small competitive field of only 48 under-20-year-olds, the two wildcard spots were highly sought after. Connor Coffin (Santa Barbara, CA) secured a ticket into the Round of 32 and local Santa Cruz “super grom” Nic Hernandez into the Round of 48.

As the historic and premiere professional surfing event of Northern California, the O’Neill Cold Water Classic will also serve as the fifth and final stop on the inaugural Cold Water Classic Series, which has already landed in Tasmania, Scotland, South Africa, and Canada. As such, the series champion will be crowned and an additional $50,000 prize purse distributed.

The event will be webcast live for all seven days of competition with expert commentary, exclusive athlete interviews and sponsor giveaways. For more information, visit: oneill.com/cwc or oakleyprojunior.com.

Special thanks to all of the sponsors of the 2009 O’Neill Cold Water Classic and Oakley Pro Junior North American Championships: O’Neill, Oakley, Red Bull, Corralejo Tequila, SURFER and SURFING, as well as, the official hotel partner, The Dream Inn and Aquarius Restaurant, and food partner, Whole Foods Market.

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