Stab Magazine | Outerknown Sponsors The World Surf League Fiji Pro

Outerknown Sponsors The World Surf League Fiji Pro

Somewhere, Kelly Slater is smiling. 

news // Apr 28, 2017
Words by stab
Reading Time: 2 minutes

Kelly Slater’s brand of surfing has been described as that of a Formula One racer; an elite, high-performance machine engineered for the most world-class of tracks. He’s at his best when the waves and competition are at their best. Such an assessment would explain his life-long love affair with the ribbons of reef at Cloudbreak and Restaurants. His proclivity for privacy makes Tavarua all the more alluring for the 11-time world champ.

Announced today, Slater’s venture in the rag trade, Outerknown, will now be the title sponsor of the WSL’s Fiji Pro. It all kind of makes sense, doesn’t it?

“I fell in love with the small island of Tavarua a long time ago and I go back a few times every year,” Kelly told the WSL. “It’s my favourite escape and may be home to the happiest people on earth.”

To digress for a moment, Fiji is not actually home to some of the happiest people on Earth. According to the 2015 World Happiness Report, Switzerland is home to the happiest people on Earth.

But that’s neither here nor there, Tavarua is a gem of an island and everyone from the resort’s local workers to the world tour surfers are stoked to see one of the marquee events finally garner a title sponsor. Originally sponsored by Quiksilver, when the company’s stock price bottomed out so did their desire to throw money at Fiji. After a brief hiatus, the contest returned as the Volcom Fiji Pro. In 2012, Cloudbreak exploded with a historic run of swell, and while the WSL called the contest off, the free-surfers took over—all beamed live around the world on the webcast. Needless to say, the CT surfers caught some heat for not partaking. Over the last few years, the WSL has had to foot the bill for the contest without a title sponsor.

Slater’s won the Fiji Pro four times over the course of his career, making it one of his most winningest locations. 2017 was supposed to be his last lap around the world and in the offseason, he made a point of letting fans know he was going to get himself back in shape to contend for a title. He started strong with a fifth on the Gold Coast, but two subsequent 13th-place finishes haven’t helped his cause. He’s currently ranked 13th on the CT, more than 13,000 points away from leader John John Florence. Slater’s always been a numbers guy and unlucky 13s have to be dancing around his psyche. But Fiji has always been a place for him to turn things around, and now with the Outerknown banner flying on the judges’ tower, he may be more emboldened to perform. If he’s going to make one last dash at world title number 12, his improbable run is going to have to start on that little heart shaped island in the South Pacific.



Comments are a Stab Premium feature. Gotta join to talk shop.

Already a member? Sign In

Want to join? Sign Up


Most Recent


“Definitely The First Time I’ve Gone Surfing Via Plane”

Parker Coffin, Harrison Roach, and friends tear through NZ on Roark's most well-rounded surf trip…

Jan 30, 2023

Pipe Preview: This Year Feels Different

With John and Gabs healthy — and the arrival of the femme next-gen — here’s…

Jan 29, 2023

WSL Tells Competitors: ‘You Better Like Them Apples’

Will mandating competitors to wear Apple Watches make the 2023 tour more or less engaging?

Jan 29, 2023

Stab Surfer of the Year: John John Florence, Italo Ferreira, Balaram Stack, Rolo Montes, and Shaun Manners

Day 9: "You can't do better than his year last year." - John John Florence

Jan 28, 2023

Full Moon Surfs, Impassable Puddles, And A Few Nights Spent Sleeping In A WSL Commentary Booth

A reader-submitted collection of nonconformist surf stories.

Jan 27, 2023

Kael Walsh Now Owns A Bitcoin, And Watched One Crypto Video

He’s officially your Stab Edit Of The Year champion.

Jan 27, 2023

Carissa Moore And Finn McGill Are Your 2023 Vans Triple Crown Of Surfing Champions 

They both pocket $50k and tickets to this year’s Vans Pipe Masters.

Jan 27, 2023


The Pick-Up, Presented By Vans, Episode 5

Mason Ho helps us ring in our final week on the North Shore.

Jan 27, 2023

Goofyfoot Brazilian World Champion Stars In Stab’s Biggest Board-Testing Franchise

Can you guess who?

Jan 26, 2023

Surf Community Rallies To Raise Funds For Eddie Winner And On-Duty Hawaiian Lifeguard Luke Shepardson

Because it's the right thing to do, of course.

Jan 26, 2023

Interview: Caity Simmers On Machete Wars, Rihanna, Personal Project Problems, And The Rise Of Female Surf Content. 

A toast to ‘Toasted.’

Jan 25, 2023

Stab Surfer of the Year: Creed McTaggart, Albee Layer, Laura Enever, Dane Guduaskas, and Selema Masekela

Day 8: "65 years young and charging just as hard as ever at Pipe, Backdoor,…

Jan 25, 2023

“I’m Not A Big Wave Guy”

How Kai Paula accidentally made his mark at Jaws three weeks after surfing it for…

Jan 24, 2023

Everyone Went.

A toes in the sand, phone in the lagoon account of the 10th Eddie Aikau…

Jan 24, 2023

Breaking: Another CT Rookie Injured Before First Event

Sophie McCulloch pulls out of Pipeline due to Snapper Rocks snafu.

Jan 23, 2023


Watch: ‘Toasted,’ By Caity Simmers

Your favorite surfer directs, edits, and stars in her first feature film. 

Jan 23, 2023

On-Duty North Shore Lifeguard Luke Shepardson Wins The Eddie Aikau

Local man prevails over 39 big-wave heavyweights at 29ft @ 19 seconds Waimea.

Jan 23, 2023

The Eddie Aikau Invitational Is On

Grab a beverage and enjoy surfing's Super Bowl Sunday

Jan 22, 2023