Saturday and Sunday's 22nd
annual Quiksilver Newport Beach Surf Championships pay homage to the famed Echo Beach breaks in a big way, with the invitational "Quiksilver Echo Beach Challenge" pairing groms with top pros; the "Expression Session" honoring the '80's era of surfing with prizes for "Best '80's Trick," "Flashiest Wetsuit" and "Most Colorful Surfboard"; and a weekend-ending private party at Blue Beet featuring projections of the documentaryEcho Beach
, music from '80's cover bandCover Me Badd
and beats spun by LA DJsTrouble and Trifle
"The Echo Beach movement surfaced nearly 30 years ago, holding its first competitive event and securing a place in the fabric of surf history and culture,"Bob McKnight
, Quiksilver CEO, explains in a company statement. "We are proud to host the Quiksilver Newport Beach Surf Championships and Echo Beach Challenge for a new generation of surfers at this historic surf spot."
Presented by Jack's Surfboards, the Quiksilver Newport Beach Surf Championships will have heats for master surfers and amateurs in seven age divisions, with more than $5,000 in cash and Jack's, Quiksilver, Zinka and Oakley prizes awarded to first- through sixth-place finishers.
During the Echo Beach Challenge, custom air-brushed twin fin surfboards will line the beach during the contest, and each competitor must switch from his own boards to a pre-selected twin fin to earn at least one score during the heat. That score will be added to their top score and the team's total.
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"The original Echo Beach Challenge was super influential on my peer group of aspiring professional surfers--the top surfers from around the world came to our home beach and it was our first chance to measure up with them in a unique competitive format," says Echo Beach filmmaker Jeff Parker. "The idea of teaming a top pro with an up-and-comer was a great motivator for everyone to step up their game."
Parker will join fellow "Original Echo Crew" members John Gothard, Richie Collins, Mark "Smerk" Mangan and Rich Knight in the Expression Session, which will showcase their style and attitude with old school tricks, flashy wetsuits and tons of new wave colors.
Pros must be invited to surf, but entry forms for amateurs can be sent to the city of Newport Beach's Recreation Services Department in the following divisions: Elementary (11 & under), Middle School (12-14), High School (15-18), Open Men's (19 & up), Masters (30 & up), Legends (40 & up), and Open Girls (all ages). The entry fee for all divisions if you are a Newport Beach resident is $30 and everyone else must tack on another $5. Call the Rec Department by Thursday at 949.644.3151 or go here: