HONOLULU – (Oct. 18, 2011) — Winter waves are pulsing onto Oahu’s North Shore with regularity, signaling that the world renowned big wave Hawaiian surf season is upon us. The HIC Pro at Sunset Beach – the precursor to the annual Vans Triple Crown of Surfing, presented by Rockstar Energy Drink – will kick-start the season, running October 28 through November 10 on the best three days of surf.
The HIC Pro is an $85,000 4-Star ASP men’s event that will decide the 2011 ASP Hawaii regional champion and reward him with one highly coveted berth into the first two events of the Vans Triple Crown series: the Reef Hawaiian Pro at Haleiwa (Nov. 12-23), and the Vans World Cup of Suring at Sunset Beach (Nov. 25-Dec. 6). More than 100 surfers, mostly from Hawaii, will be on hand to take on the powerful and challenging surf on offer at Sunset Beach.
While visiting international and North American surfers will focus on gaining water time and experience at the complex and shifty break, Billy Kemper, the defending HIC Pro Champion, is part of a cadre of ultra-competitive Hawaii locals, for whom a win at Sunset is all-important.
“This contest has a lot of pressure for the Hawaii surfers to do battle to get into the Triple Crown,” says Kemper. “I put in a lot of time out at Sunset and have been training really hard with Kahea Hart in preparation for this event and the winter.”
Given the competitive nature of Hawaii surfers and the lure of a golden ticket into the Vans Triple Crown, the HIC Pro will deliver a hot mix of power surfing, critical fins-free maneuvers and barrel riding to each heat.
“Sunset can change so much that you need everything in your arsenal,” Kemper explains. “I always feel like raising the bar is needed. At Sunset, you always have to push yourself to the top if you want to make it. Hard work and dedication is what it takes!”
Contest days of the 2011 HIC Pro will stream live on the Internet at vans.com/HICPro. The HIC Pro will also broadcast live on Oceanic Time Warner Cable channels 250 and 1250HD, contingent on the ASP World Tour event in San Francisco. If the two ASP events happen to run on same day, the ASP World Tour event will take broadcast precedence. The HIC Pro will also stream live on the iPad and iPhone via the free VANS LIVE app.
On the final day of competition, between the semis and final, a “Champions” heat is slated to go down, featuring six legendary former HIC Pro champions.
The HIC Pro (Oct. 28-Nov.10) and Vans Triple Crown of Surfing (Nov. 12-Dec. 20) round out the 2011 Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) World Tour, crowning the regional and world champions respectively. The 2011 ASP tour then commences in Hawaii with events in January and February to close out the Hawaiian winter.