Kuda Huraa, Maldives – June 21, 2013 – The first three contenders in this year’s Four Seasons Maldives Surfing Champions Trophy have now been announced.
Defending champion Damien Hardman (AUS), second-timer Tom Curren (USA), and new invitee Pedro Henrique (BRA) will all compete in the world-class boutique surfing contest at Four Seasons Resort Maldives at Kuda Huraa, now in its third successive year.
Running from August 26 to September 2, the elite annual event features six ex-world champions battling it out in a US$25,000 showdown across three surfboard divisions: retro single-fins, twin-fins and modern thrusters.
News of Damien ‘Dooma’ Hardman’s return to Maldivian shores has been hotly anticipated by all. Returning to the event for the third time – as the defending 2012 champion – Dooma is also dubbed ‘Iceman’ on account of his fierce concentration and fearless approach. A true surf master who has been riding the ocean waves since the 70s, his wave precision, tactical wizardry and prior knowledge of the Kuda Huraa waves give him a distinct advantage over his opponents.
Dooma admitted he was “thrilled” to be revisiting the island – and not just for the surf … “It’s great to be returning to Kuda Huraa’s luxurious surrounds that I'll get to share with my wife Belinda, and she's as excited as me!” he commented. “That being said, I'll be gunning for the Champions Trophy and the $25,000 prize money for sure!"
Back for his second consecutive year in the championship, living surf icon and retro aficionado Tom Curren needs little introduction. The three-time world champion and true soul surfer has been revered worldwide since the mid-80s, and it’s his unequalled surfing style and unassuming nature that has secured him as one of the sport’s finest athletes. Ever the competitor, Curren is delighted to be returning to this year’s line-up following his very narrow defeat by Hardman in the thrilling 2012 contest.
Curren describes his 2012 experience, which he shared with his son Patrick, as “amazing and really fun”. This year, his travelling partner to Kuda Huraa will be his other son Francis, who is also a remarkable surfer.
This year’s contest also sees the arrival of first-timer Pedro Henrique (Rio de Janeiro, Bra), who honed his impressive high-paced skills riding Rio’s beach breaks as a boy. Trained by his father, Pedro’s prominence came in 2000 after winning the World Junior Championship in Hawaii, aged only 18. He became a competitor of the prestigious surfing World Tour in 2006, and a string of surfing accolades followed. Affectionately nicknamed ‘Pedrinho’, his natural fun-loving charm gives way to superhuman agility and seriously advanced manoeuvers that will be no joke for his more seasoned challengers. Recently, he achieved international acclaim in pro-kitesurfing, becoming triple world champion and Brazilian champion in 2012. Now based in Portugal, his attention has turned once again to his love of ‘pure’ surfing.
Henrique is ecstatic to be competing in Kuda Huraa’s illustrious contest, revealing it was "great news” to be invited to the Surfing Championship Trophy. “I feel it’s a great honour to be competing with my idols … true surf legends!”
Four Seasons Maldives Surfing Champions Trophy is hosted aboard Four Seasons Explorer – the Maldives’ ultimate surf vessel. Organised in conjunction with luxury surf pioneers, Tropicsurf, this year’s event will once again simultaneously feature the Four Seasons Maldives Domestic Champions Trophy – a thrilling showcase of local talent that last year saw Hussain Areef, the country’s reigning national champion, scoop MVR 25,000.
Guests of Four Seasons Kuda Huraa can catch all the action with day passes aboard Four Seasons Explorer or book an all-inclusive Group Surf & Stay (available from August 26 to September 2 for a minimum booking of five rooms or more for seven nights). In addition to competition day passes, full board and transfers, Group Surf & Stay includes seven days of intense surfing with Tropicsurf’s expert guides, plus the chance to rub shoulders with all the Surfing Champions contestants in Kuda Huraa’s award-winning surrounds.
Who will fill the last three places in this year’s line-up? Watch this space!
For more information visit: www.surfingchampionstrophy.com
Limited day passes will be available (at a fee) for non-package guests and members of the public wishing to view the event from Four Seasons Explorer. Call + 960 66 00 888 for enquiries and rates.