Chatting with Jake Paterson at Bells Beach this week, here is what some of the WSL professional surfers on the CT had to say about why they like Margaret River:
The 1988 World Champion Barton Lynch who spent 15 years on the ASP World Championship Tour (WCT) clocking up 17 WCT victories says he’s looking forward to returning to Margaret River.
“I haven’t been back to Margaret River since 1997, a very, very long time. I love the region and have been quoted as saying that it’s my favourite place in the world,” winner of 1990 and 1995 Margaret River Pro says.
“I love the natural elements of the environment – seeing twelve foot grass tress that must be prehistoric is really special.
“I always felt really at home in Margaret River and on this trip I’m bringing my wife and seven-month-old baby with me.
“The waves are great and I remember the climate there being good – not freezing cold like Victoria,” the Sydney-sider said.
Tom Carroll, winner of the 1986,1987 and 1992 Margaret River Pro, said he is looking forward to returning to Western Australia’s south west.
“I love the pristine environment of the Margaret River region, the clean air, the experience of surfing there and the feeling of being on the edge of an ancient continent,” said the two-time world surfing champion.
LA resident and adopted Western Australian Ian Cairns, a pro surfer instrumental in elevating the sport to professional levels, is looking forward to returning to Margaret River’s natural surrounds.
“Having travelled to so many urban surf locations over the years, it is always so amazing to be out in the water all along the coast and seeing the uninterrupted sweep of the coastline with no houses, coffee shops and parking lots – that’s one reason why I love the Margaret River region,” Mr Cairns says.
“I was in Margaret River last year riding my SUP boards on some incredible reefs. The surf between Cape Naturaliste and Cape Leeuwin is blessed with big swells, great reefs and beaches and many hidden nods and crannies.
“The beautiful clear water is truly amazing when so many other surf areas around the world are plagued with polluted water in the surf.
“Driving the country roads and seeing all the different farming communities is really cool. I have family living out on dairy farms in the area and really love the way they have both made the region such a great rural community but also how they have embraced the surfing community since the 60's,” says Mr Cairns.
Mr Cairns founded the Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) in 1983.
Margaret River is the only wine region in the world that also has world-class surf breaks worthy of a Championship Tour event.
The Drug Aware Margaret River Pro is proudly supported by the WA State through Tourism WA and Royalties for Regions.
The World Surf League Championship Tour will bring the top 32 ranked male (plus two wild card entries) and top 17 ranked female (plus one wild card entry) surfers to the extraordinary waves of Western Australia.
Over 12 days, surfers will compete on the days producing the best conditions.
For more information, visit http://www.worldsurfleague.com/events