WSL Retracts Its New Double-Qualifier Rule At Behest Of Petitioning QS Surfers, Some With Shaving-Creamed(?) Nipples
Email leak reveals WSL’s change of heart.
The WSL completely changed its Championship Tour feeder system this year.
They split the QS into two separate tours (the Qualifying Series, which is by region, and the Challenger Series, which brings the best surfers from the QS to compete on international soil for a designated number of CT spots); changed the number of qualifiers from 10 to 12 for the men, 5 to 6 for the women; and terminated the rule where double-qualifier spots would go to the next QS surfer in line.
It’s this last point that rubbed some prospective CT surfers the wrong way. So much so that they decided to start a petition against the WSL.
In a widely circulated Challenger Series group thread, athletes shared their views about why the new rule was so unjust, citing former double-qualifier beneficiary, current World #5 Morgan Cibilic’s success as evidence that the double-qualifier rule should remain intact. Others, like Crosby Colapinto, decided to lighten the collective mood by submitting topless photos of himself with maybe whipped cream, but based on consistency and shape of the mounds, most likely shaving cream, on his nipples.
Crosby was reportedly removed from the group chat.
With the help of World Professional Surfers (the surfers’ union) leader Christian Bessera, a petition was drafted and circulated, with well over 100 WSL surfers giving it their stamp of approval. And it wasn’t just a bunch of Johnny Bangsitfourtimes signing the doc to delay their inevitable surf coaching/manual labor/real estate careers — CT stars like Gabriel Medina, Filipe Toledo, and Tatiana Weston-Webb also supported the cause with their weighty namesakes.
Speaking of heavy hitters, Kanoa Igarashi, who is a CT top-10er currently leading the Challenger Series, was vocally opposed to this rule in an interview with Stab last week.
“All of a sudden, I didn’t want to beat anyone [in the France CS event]. I felt like I was surfing for WSL…to give them a spot. That didn’t feel right. I think the rule was better the way it was before,” Kanoa said.
These sentiments were heard loud and clear by the WSL, who just a couple of hours ago, sent an email to their athletes rescinding the double-qualifier rule change and guaranteeing a fair and transparent qualification process in 2021.
The following email, sent by a League official, was forwarded to Stab by multiple CS sources:
Hope you are all well and are enjoying your break before Haleiwa if you are competing.
I wanted to address directly with you all the issues you raised through the CS surfer reps to us regarding the ” double qualifier rule”. Specifically, I want to acknowledge on behalf of the Tours and Competition team the unintended, but very real consequences and stresses that this rule has brought to all of our surfers competing this year.
As this is the first year that we have had the rule in place, we are also learning in real-time with you all. We did not anticipate how impactful this rule would be.
I would like to commit to you that we will not be taking any wildcards on behalf of the WSL in 2021. For 2021 we will qualify ‘ double qualifiers’ onto our Championship Tour. The full 12 spots for men and 6 spots for women available will come from the challenger series.
Going forward, we will review this rule with your pool of surfer reps. As every year the circumstances around the double qualifiers are different, we will review the double qualifier rule with your surfer reps post WSL Finals with the intention of providing clarity for the back half of the challenger season. The rule exists for flexibility around injuries for our top surfers.
Finally – I would like to thank everyone for your commitment to the tour and the season that we have had so far. The Challenger Series is an important new tour for us, and we have been working hard on creating a platform for all of you to shine. Thank you for the open and honest feedback, and I hope that it will continue between us.
You have to give it to the WSL, this is a classy move.
They recognized that they messed up, owned it, and promised to do better moving forward. Former versions of the League would have stuck their heads in the sand, thinking they know better than athletes and fans alike. But we applaud their open ears and lack of ego in this situation — it really is for the best.
Here’s what the current men’s CS rankings look like. With the rule change, the qualifying line just moved to #15.
The women’s rankings have not changed.
This Is How You Win The Backdoor Shootout
The Mason x Snapt4 highlight reel is a must-watch.
Carissa Moore, John Florence, Caity Simmers and Jai Glindeman are the 2021 Stab Surfers of the Year
Plus, Caity Simmer and Jai Glindeman take Best Juniors, 'Sonic Souvenirs' wins Best Edit, and…
John John Florence Could Win The 2022 World Title Traveling By Sail Boat
And here is exactly how.
You Can Ride Jack Robinson’s Stab In The Dark Boards
And so many others. See you at Camp Shred, the largest board demo in the…
Stab Surfer of the Year: Kelly Slater and The Stab Premium Members
Day Ten: You typed, we tallied up and Kelly Slater slid into our DMs.
Surf Fans And Athletes Urge WSL To #PutMaseInTheMasters
Mason Ho is the fiscally responsible wildcard decision.
Do You Have What It Takes To Surf The Triple Crown In A Single Day?
Harry Bryant & Micky Clarke take on the trifecta, the GOAT returns, Ivan Florence finds…
Why The WSL Is Going Back To Lowers
And is it the right call? Let's explore, and hear from Jessi Miley-Dyer.
Surfing Progressed At The Da Hui Backdoor Shootout
The all-female team stole the show. Here’s a recap, and a photo gallery from Arto…
Rivvia Projects Is The Fourth High-Profile Surfer-Owned Brand
Here’s what we know about Julian Wilson’s new endeavour.
Mason Ho & Snapt 4 Take Out The Da Hui Backdoor Shootout
Honorable mention to Kala Grace for his tapped 12-point ride.
Stab Surfer of the Year: Italo Ferreira, Bettylou Sakura Johnson, Matt Meola, Leo Fioravanti and Alex Knost
Day Nine: The calm before the Premium Members have the final say...
The Backdoor Shootout Finals Are On, Watch Here
The leaderboard is tight, and the waves are firing.
Tonga Underwater Volcano Erupts, Triggers Tsunami Warnings In US, Australia, Japan, NZ
Satellite footage is wild.