RECORD NUMBER OF COUNTRIES TO COMPETE IN OCEANSIDE FOR 2015 VISSLA ISA WORLD JUNIOR SURFING CHAMPIONSHIP FROM OCTOBER 11-18. 35 COUNTRIES AND 320 ATHLETES!
Oceanside, California is set to host the VISSLA ISA World Junior Surfing Championship (WJSC). This is the first time in ten years that the competition has been held in the United States.
This renowned surf competition showcases the best young surfers from around the globe. The World Championship crowns individual Gold Medalists in four divisions—Under-18 Boys, Under-16 Boys, Under-18 Girls, Under-16 Girls, and an overall Team Champion.
Crowning the likes of Gabriel Medina, Julian Wilson, Jordy Smith, Filipe Toledo, Stephanie Gilmore and Sally Fitzgibbons, the ISA World Junior Surfing Championship is the premiere event for determining the future stars in the sport of Surfing.
The level of competition in the 2015 edition will be no exception, as U-16 2014 Gold Medalists Mahina Maeda (HAW) and Leo-Paul Etienne (FRA) will return to defend their titles. Coming off an ISA World Surfing Games Gold Medal in Nicaragua, USA’s Tia Blanco will be a Gold Medal favorite looking to add another medal to her collection. 2014 Girls U-18 runner-up, France’s Kim Veteau, will have her eyes set on the Gold with the absence of the reigning champion Tatiana Weston-Webb, who is ranked 8th on the Women’s World Championship Tour.
If you’re a fan of surfing, this is one not to miss. There is an entire week of activities including:
- October 11th at 10am: Opening Ceremonies featuring the Parade of Nations and Sands of the World
- October 12th- 18th from 7am-5pm: Surf Competitions
- October 18th: Closing Ceremony
The Future of Surfing
The ISA (International Surfing Association) has an incredible scholarship program that distributes $50,000 ($100-$1,000 per recipient) in grants to U-18 surfers to help fund their education and surfing careers. The ISA Individual Scholarship was established in 2007 and has awarded more than $228,500 in scholarships to further the education and surfing careers of 267 surfers. With surfing potentially becoming an Olympic sport, the stakes are even higher for youth to train and gain experience competing at an international level.
Here is a sample of two inspiring athletes that will compete at the 2015 VISSLA ISA World Junior Surfing Championship:
Ntando Msibi (South Africa)
The story of Ntando Msibi, age 18, is well documented. A South African, who lost both of his parents at a young age and grew up on the streets of Durban, then turned away from life on the streets in his early teens. A 2013 ISA Scholarship recipient, Ntando used his scholarship award to purchase a Surfboard and travel to national surfing competitions. Ntando qualified for the South Africa Junior Team that competed at the 2014 VISSLA ISA World Junior Surfing Championship in Ecuador. Ntando recently said that representing Team South Africa at the biggest junior surfing competition in the world was a lifelong dream of his.
Leilani McGonagle (Costa Rica)
Leilani McGonagle, age 15, began surfing shortly after taking her first steps and learned how to surf on the same board as her father. At age 11, she was diagnosed with severe scoliosis that she has been treating with yoga sequences that includes isolated muscle stretching and strengthening. At just 14 years old, Leilani won two medals at the 2014 VISSLA ISA World Junior Surfing Championship (Silver Under16 and Bronze Under 18) and this past June, took the Silver at the 2015 ISA World Surfing Games (Open Division for all age groups).
For live action, photos, videos, news and event info, visit: www.ISAworlds.com
Follow all of the action on the go by searching hashtag #ISAworlds on Instagram, Pinterest and Twitter.
Photo credit: ISA/Rommel Gonzales