The International Surfing Association [ISA] has welcomed the official launch of Surf Snowdonia – the innovative, inland surf lagoon in Wales, UK – as a momentous breakthrough that will revolutionise the sport and the way that world-class Surfing competitions will be delivered, presented and watched.
One of the world’s most advanced Surfing lagoons, Surf Snowdonia was officially launched today ahead of opening to the public tomorrow [1 August 2015]. The facility will use innovative technology created by Spanish engineering firm Wavegarden®, which has the capability of delivering the longest man-made surfable waves in the world. The launch was attended today by ISA Vice-President and double World Champion in StandUp paddle [SUP], Casper Steinfath.
Surf Snowdonia will use the technology to provide consistent and perfectly formed barrelling waves that can be up to 2 metres high and will peel for up to 150 metres. The waves can be generated at the push of a button at a rate of one every minute. Up to 36 surfers will be able to use the 300 metre lagoon simultaneously.
The latest developments are seen as a ‘game changer’ in terms of making Surfing accessible to people around the world and especially those with limited access to the ocean. In addition, as the new technology is capable of delivering perfect waves every time, all the time, the new wave parks have the potential to host major ISA Championships and it also opens the door for Surfing to be included in international multi-sport events, including the Olympic Games.
Surfing is one of eight sports shortlisted for potential inclusion at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games and the ISA will present its Olympic proposal to the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee next week as part of the ongoing campaign process.
Fernando Aguerre, President of the International Surfing Association, said:
“This is a significant and exciting breakthrough that will revolutionise Surfing and enable many more people to enjoy and take part in the sport. Pioneering and sustainable wave parks like Surf Snowdonia can be created almost anywhere in the world and the innovative, flexible and multi-use centres will open up Surfing to many more fans and participants in urban and rural areas – helping to create great local long-term social and recreational benefits.
“The ISA now looks forward to hosting its first world-class Surfing championship at an inland wave park where we can make perfect waves for competition every time. This breakthrough also highlights how Surfing can be easily integrated into global multi-sport events and facilities like Surf Snowdonia can become the blueprint for competitive inland Surfing venues at major sports events in the future.
“As we prepare to present to the Tokyo 2020 team next month, it fills me with great confidence that a fantastic inland facility like Surf Snowdonia can showcase world-class Surfing action and excite and enthuse the next generation of Surfing participants and fans.”
Speaking from the official launch of Surf Snowdonia, Casper Steinfath, double World Champion in StandUp paddle [SUP] and ISA Vice-President, said:
“It’s fantastic to be here at Surf Snowdonia to witness this world-class facility in action. The quality and consistency of the waves that the new technology can produce really does make a difference and a centre like this is clearly capable of creating perfect Surfing conditions that could be used at future ISA Championships and major, multi-sport competitions such as the Olympic Games.
“It’s every sportsperson’s dream to compete at the Olympic Games and if Surfing is included at Tokyo 2020 there would be a huge buzz amongst the Surfing community. Surfing is such a visually powerful and energetic sport, it has a unique youthful culture and it embodies the spirit and enthusiasm of young people all around the world. It would be fantastic to see Surfing on the greatest sporting stage at the Olympic Games.”
The International Surfing Association (ISA), founded in 1964, is recognized by the International Olympic Committee as the World Governing Authority for Surfing. The ISA governs and defines Surfing as Shortboard, Longboard & Bodyboarding, StandUp Paddle (SUP) Racing and Surfing, Bodysurfing, Wakesurfing, and all other wave riding activities on any type of waves, and on flat water using wave riding equipment. The ISA crowned its first Men’s and Women’s World Champions in 1964. It crowned the first Big Wave World Champion in 1965; World Junior Champion in 1980; World Kneeboard Champions in 1982; World Longboard Surfing and World Bodyboard Champions in 1988; World Tandem Surfing Champions in 2006; World Masters Champions in 2007; and World StandUp Paddle (SUP, both surfing and racing) and Paddleboard Champions in 2012.
ISA membership includes the surfing National Governing Bodies of 100 countries on five continents. Its headquarters are located in La Jolla, California. It is presided over by Fernando Aguerre (Argentina), first elected President in 1994 in Rio de Janeiro. The ISA’s four Vice-Presidents are Karín Sierralta (PER), Kirsty Coventry (ZIM), Casper Steinfath (DEN) and Barbara Kendall (NZL).