The World Surf League has announced that it will start its 2022 Championship Tour season on the North Shore’s Banzai Pipeline and Sunset Beach for both its men’s and women’s surfers, marking the first time that the tour will have a women’s CT event at Pipeline.
The WSL is expected to announce the rest of its Championship Tour and Challenger Series schedule soon, but for now, the women’s CT event is set to serve as a historic milestone.
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“it’s a big deal for the women to have an event at Pipeline,” surfing coach, former surf pro and Haleiwa native Ross Williams told KHON2 sports director Rob DeMello. “There hasn’t been an event like this before on a schedule aside from Tahiti many years ago so this is going to be a great challenge for the women and it’s gonna be just one more reason to tune in because I think these women are definitely capable and it’s gonna force some of the women that don’t surf out of pipe very often to go out there and practice and as a whole, I think it’s really going to elevate the women’s tour.
“It’s been really incredible to see the level of surfing has risen to over the last five, six years and to be honest, this next crew coming up of young ladies, it looks like they’re some whole ‘nother level that’s about to hit the tour in the next couple of years so now we’re talking about big airs, we’re talking about heavy breaks like pipe, risking surfing involved and barrel rides and errors is why people tune in. The women’s tour is really reaching new heights and I think that talent level, I think it’s about to explode.”
The women’s CT event at Pipeline is a major boon for the sport, especially as the announcement comes off the heels of a shark attack during the Maui Pro last December that forced the relocation of the event.