October 15, 2011

Press Conference Announces the Start of the Historic El Salvador ISA World Masters Surfing Championship

Press Conference Announces the Start of the Historic El Salvador ISA World Masters Surfing Championship

L to R: Juan Ashton (PUR), Fabio Gouveia (BRA), Layne Beachley (AUS), Rafael Leret, Carolina Cerna, Carlos Molina, Rodrigo Barraza, Carlos Ortiz and ISA President Fernando Aguerre live from California. Photo: ISA/Quincho

Strong rain forces the postponement of the parade now scheduled for Monday at 5:00pm (4:00pm PDT, 7:00pm EST). Watch it live online on www.elsalvadorisawmsc.com

El Salvador ISA World Masters Surfing Championship
October 15, 2011
La Libertad, El Salvador

Local government authorities, surfers and ISA representatives gathered for the event’s official press conference today at the premises of El Salvador’s Tourism Department in San Salvador, the capital city. They announced the official opening of the world’s largest Masters surfing event in the sport’s history on Monday at the famous point break, Punta Roca in La Libertad.

Dignitaries present were: ISA President, Fernando Aguerre (via Skype); Minister of Tourism Secretary, Carolina Cerna; Mayor of La Libertad, Carlos Molina; President of the El Salvadorian Chamber of Tourism, Rafael Leret, Salvadorian Surfing Federation’s Rodrigo Barraza and event organizer, Grey Line’s Carlos Ortiz. Also present were seven-time Pro Tour Women’s World Champion, Layne Beachley (AUS), three-time ISA Masters World Champion Juan Ashton (PUR) and former Pro Tour star and ISA Open World Champion, Fabio Gouveia (BRA).

“I’m very happy and proud that El Salvador will host its first ISA World Masters Surfing Championship in history,” said ISA President Fernando Aguerre, who was present via Skype (Aguerre couldn’t travel after doctor’s recommendation because of a back injury). “I would have given anything to be there with you. I work for the ISA for the love of the sport and El Salvador is the only Central American country that I have not surfed yet so I really wanted to go. It is my great hope that surfing continues to be a part of the country’s tourism strategy; the following week will be a great way to prove that the strategy is more than great.”

The President of the El Salvadorian Chamber of Tourism, Rafael Leret was happy to welcome 124 athletes from 21 countries. He said, “Surfing is one of the pillars of tourism in El Salvador and is a sport that is practiced in remote areas with needs. It is here where we need to see it developing, to help those families making it a beloved activity for all the inhabitants in these places.”

The surfers who arrived in El Salvador days before the event to practice are thrilled and impressed by the quality of Punta Roca’s waves. “This is one of the best waves in the world,” said defending Champion Ashton. Brazil’s Gouveia, agreed, “When I knew that the event was going to take place here, I tried really hard to make the team and come to surf this awesome wave.”

The legendary surfer, seven-time World Champion Layne Beachley, who had just arrived from the airport, said, “I never had the opportunity to represent Australia as an official National Team member, and I really wanted to do it. So, since I left the professional tour three years ago, I decided to come and defend the colors of my country. We (Aussies) love to win, and yes, I came here to win. I will keep coming back to compete as long as I feel I can win.”

The event will start on Monday at 8:00 am local time (7:00 PDT and 11:00 EST), and it will be broadcast live on www.elsalvadorisawmsc.com.

The Opening Ceremony was postponed at the request of the President of El Salvador, who declared a State of Emergency due to five consecutive days of torrential rain.  The Emergency decree is expected to be lifted Sunday evening after the Opening Ceremony was originally scheduled. It has been rescheduled for Monday at 5:00pm local time (4:00pm PDT, 7:00pm EST).

TV and Photo footage free of rights for editorial use are available upon request, register at http://elsalvadorisawmsc.com/media

The ISA World Masters Surfing Championship is sponsored by El Salvador Impresionante, Alcaldía del Puerto de La Libertad, Surfos, Alcatel, TACA), El Gráfico, Olas Permanentes Magazine, TIGO, Decameron, Cushe, Maya Realty, Yamaha, Alamo, La Femenina, CONJUVE, Amate Travel, Línea Ejecutiva, Surfline, Hospital de la Mujer, Arreconsa, Torogoz, Pepsi, Adrenaline, Gray Line El Salvador, CASATUR and POLITUR

About the International Surfing Association
The International Surfing Association (ISA) is recognized by the International Olympic Committee as the World Governing Authority for Surfing. It was originally founded as the International Surfing Federation in 1964 and has been running Open Division World Championships since 1964, Junior World Championships since 1980, and Masters World Championships since 2007. The ISA also sanctions the World Kneeboard Titles and the Tandem Surfing World Title, and will hold the first World Bodyboard Championship in 2011, and the first World Standup Paddle (SUP) and Paddleboard Championship in 2012.

ISA membership includes the surfing National Governing Bodies of 69 countries on five continents. Its headquarters are located in San Diego, California. It is presided over by Fernando Aguerre (Argentina), first elected President in 1994 in Rio de Janeiro and re-elected seven times since. The ISA´s three Vice-Presidents are Alan Atkins (AUS), Karín Sierralta (PER) and Debbie Beacham (USA).