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The Wave Pool at Parque El Agua was the Venue of the Opening Ceremony Where The 9 National Delegations Gathered

The second consecutive ISA World Bodyboard Championship (WBC) officially opened on Saturday in Margarita Island, Venezuela.

The Flag Bearers of the participating National Teams wearing their country’s colors during the Opening Ceremony of the 2013 ISA World Bodyboard Championship. Photo: ISA/Pastor Marcano.

In attendance were the 9 National Delegations featuring 40 of the world’s best bodyboarders, who traveled to Venezuela from every corner of the globe. Local authorities, government officials and many enthusiastic locals witnessed the start of the 2013 ISA WBC.

“Welcome bodyboarding friends from around the world, gathered here for the ISA World Bodyboard Championship,” remarked ISA President Fernando Aguerre, in his Opening Ceremony speech. “It’s a really amazing moment. I want to thank especially Antonio Sotillo from the Venezuelan Surging Federation, all the bodyboarders and the Venezuelan people that received us with open arms for a second year in a row.”

Aguerre added, “I wish all the competitors success and joy. Have an amazing time and enjoy the legendary warmth of the Venezuelans and its beautiful Caribbean Sea.  Thanks to all of you.”

Government representatives and local authorities during the Opening Ceremony (from L to R) Maria Alejandra Zambrano, representative of Gran Misión, A Toda Vida Venezuela Organization; César Garcia, Chairman of Parque El Agua’s Board of Directors; Yeseira Perdomo, National Anti-Drug Organization Director of Nueva Esparta State; Antonio Sotillo, Venezuelan Surfing Federation President; Yohan de Souza, Professional Sports Director of the Ministry of Sports, and Gaetano “Nino” Lauro, ISA Technical Director. Photo: ISA/Fernando Rivero

The Opening Ceremony took place in El Agua Park. The National Teams paraded through its facilities and finished at the stage located in front of its wave pool that is capable of creating playful 1-2 feet waves.

On the Opening Ceremony stage, the ISA’s traditional Sands of the World Ceremony took place. Two representatives from each delegation walked on stage, one proudly waving their national flag while the other poured sand from one of their local beaches into a custom glass container, symbolizing the peaceful gathering of nations through the love of surfing.

To close the festivities, Jose Murguey, a gifted local “cuatrero” (small 4-string guitar player), delighted all the attendees with traditional Venezuelan songs.

Competition of the ISA World Bodyboard Championship begins Sunday at 9am (local time) featuring Round 1 of Qualifying Open Men’s Bodyboard.

To watch the live webcast, news, photos and videos visit the Official Event website www.isawbc.com

About the International Surfing Association:

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, Para 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; World StandUp Paddle (SUP, both surfing and racing) and Paddleboard Champions in 2012; and World Para Surfing Champions in 2015.

ISA membership includes the surfing National Federations of 108 countries on five continents. The ISA is presided over by Fernando Aguerre (ARG). The Executive Committee includes four Vice-Presidents Karín Sierralta (PER), Kirsty Coventry (ZIM), Casper Steinfath (DEN) and Barbara Kendall (NZL), Athletes’ Commission Chair Justine Dupont (FRA), Regular Members Atsushi Sakai (JPN) and Jean Luc Arassus (FRA) and ISA Executive Director Robert Fasulo as Ex-officio Member.

Its headquarters are located in La Jolla, California (USA).