Toyota USA Surfing Prime Series 2021 Season Starts Jan. 23-24 Indiatlantic, Fla. (January 12, 2021) – The 2021 East Coast Toyota USA Surfing Prime Series kicks off at Paradise Beach in Indiatlantic, Florida’s Paradise Beach, drawing the best junior surfers from New York to Florida.
“After months of Covid shutdowns, we are beyond stoked to see surfers back in Toyota jerseys competing again,” said USA Surfing CEO Greg Cruse. Contest organizers are following CDC Covid-19 protocols to keep athletes, staff and fans socially distanced and safe.
The Toyota USA Surfing Prime Series is the highest level of junior surfing in the nation, and is now an official part of the Olympic Development Program as recognized by the US Olympic and Paralympic Committee. The best under 18 surfers from up and down the East Coast will compete for East Coast titles and the opportunity to surf the Toyota USA Surfing Championships at Lower Trestles in California. Surfline forecasters say conditions at Paradise Beach are lining up for a solid weekend of good surf.
The elite contest series is designed to prepare young surfers for the big leagues of surfing.
The East Coast generates impressive surfing talent, including surfing’s first Olympian Caroline Marks and American world champions Kelly Slater, Frieda Zamba, CJ Hobgood and Lisa Andersen – all from Florida.
Caroline qualified for the WSL Championship Tour while still competing in the Prime Series at age 15. She holds the most USA Surfing Championship titles for junior girls. Her experience in East Coast conditions will serve her well competing in surfing’s first Olympic Games, which will take place in conditions that are very similar to East Coast waves. The official Surfline forecaster for the Olympic Games, Kurt Korte, is from North Carolina. Korte will help Olympic surf officials make the call for when to run Olympic surf competition in Japan this summer.
Palm City's Zoe Benedetto, Vero Beach's Tommy Coleman and Flagler Beach's Ryan Huckabee all earned medals in the most recent ISA World Jr Surfing Championship, helping Team USA win the overall gold medal. Covid shut downs denied Coleman and Melbourne standout Blake Speir their final year of competition in USA Surfing events which top out at age 18.
Surfers competing in the Prime Series experience an event with judging, announcing and organization consistent with WSL pro events, including four-person heats with priority, computer scoring live on the STACT App and instant replay for the judges, and professional WSL/ISA judges and announcers.
The Toyota USA Surfing Prime Series makes stops along both East and West coasts and culminates in the USA Surfing Championships in June. The competition was created to bridge the gap young surfers experience when trying to make the leap from pro junior competition to next-level competition opportunities, including a position on the USA Surfing national teams, the World Surf League (WSL) Qualifying Series and potentially the Olympics and WSL Championship Tour. The Prime Series champion and podium roster is a who’s who in American surfing.
In addition to Caroline Marks, several current WSL pro surfers honed their competitive skills through USA Surfing’s Prime Series, including 3rd-ranked Lakey Peterson, 5th-ranked Kolohe Andino, 2018 US Open champions Courtney Conlogue and Kanoa Igarashi, fan favorites Conner Coffin and Griffin Colapinto. New Jersey’s Ben Gravy (Graeff) was on USA Surfing’s national team that competed in ISA World Championships in Australia in 2005. Wildwood Crest’s Maddie Peterson was on USA Surfing’s 2014 ISA World Junior Championship team. The Prime Series champion and podium roster is a who’s who in American surfing.
This weekend’s Prime competitors will be treated to healthy, tasty surf snacks from Blue Diamond almonds and GoGo Big squeeZ. Competitors can use Alex Corson’s Faces 4 Autism Blue Wonderland Surf Wax before their heats. Blue Wonderland’s mission is to spread the stoke of surfing and support for Autism awareness.
Media contact: Becky (at) usasurfing (dot) org
USA Surfing is the National Governing Body for surfing in the United States, recognized by the International Surfing Association (ISA) and the United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee (USOPC). USA Surfing’s mission is to promote and grow the sport of surfing and support United States athletes of all backgrounds to achieve sustained competitive excellence in Olympic, Paralympic, Pan American and Parapan American competition. USA Surfing will oversee and support America’s Olympic team as surfing makes its debut in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, and surfing and stand-up paddleboarding athletes compete in the 2019 Pan American Games.
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USA Surfing is recognized by the International Surfing Association (ISA). The ISA is recognized by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) as the World Governing Authority for Surfing, Stand Up Paddling, Prone Paddling, Bodyboarding, and Surfriding.