World’s best surfers ride the perfect wave in the Valley before the sport debuts in the Olympics

Local News

LEMOORE, California (KSEE) – Surfs up in the south Valley. The world’s best surfers will be hangin’ ten in Lemoore.

Thirty-six men and 18 women will be competing in the Freshwater Pro event at the Kelly Slater Surf Ranch.

It’s a three-day surfing showdown, where you can catch the world’s best surfers rip, curl and ride the perfect wave.

It’s the third public event at the ranch and part of the WSL Championship Tour.

“It’s amazing to be back in Lemoore, I love this wave, it’s amazing to be surfing the Surf Ranch,” says Gabriel Medina, Brazilian professional surfer.

This one of the last U.S. surfing competitions before the sport makes its debut at the Olympic games in Tokyo, next summer.

And with this technology, 11-time WSL Champion Kelly Slater says it’s possible it will be included in the future Olympics and this could be somewhere they will train.

“No matter what country you’re in, you’re going to be looking at the potential of having wave technology as opposed to the ocean you’re not dealing with the wind, or the weather conditions, it just doesn’t affect us like it does in the ocean,” says Slater.

Many of these pros have surfed the most exotic beaches, so it’s hard to believe they’re hanging ten in the middle of farmland, more than 100 miles from the nearest beach.

But Slater says they have much love for the Valley.

“Seems like we made a lot of friends, and haven’t made any enemies that I know of, all the neighbors around we’re cool with them, and a lot of the businesses,” he said.

With four remaining stops on the WSL Championship Tour, the Freshwater Pro marks one year since they announced equal prize money for female surfers.

“We had a wonderful year already and I won one event so I got to reap the rewards of some equal prize pay already,” says Stephanie Gilmore, Australian professional surfer.

The Freshwater Pro kicks off on Thursday and runs until Saturday.

For event and ticket information visit: https://www.wslfreshwaterpro.com/.

For local, national, and breaking news, and to get weather alerts, download our FREE mobile app from the Apple App Store or the Google Play Store.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

CBS47 On Your Side

Do you have a problem that you need help solving? Contact CBS47 and let us be On Your Side.

Phone: 559-761-0383
Email: OnYourSide@cbsfresno.com