Brett Simpson of Huntington Beach was
the first winner of the Orange County Surfer of the Year Award as chosen
by readers of ocregister.com. Simpson, a rising star on the WQS surf circuit
edged out big wave surfer Greg Long of San Clemente, with each garnering
over a million votes out of about three million cast. Voters seemed to
have a crystal ball as Simpson has surfed to near the top of the WQS standings
this year in a bid to move into the elite WCT next year. Like most surfing-related
contests, the format was different last year.
Greg Long received the expert's choice award as surfer
of the year for taking on some of the largest breaks in the world, while
shunning the regular contest circuit.
Courtney Conlogue, a phenom out of Santa Ana who starred on the
amateur circuit, was tapped by the expert as female surfer of the year.
It's amazing to think it is still two years until we're likely to see
her turn pro and compete for cash on the women's WQS or WCT circuit.
Jun 2-7 - WQS Rusty Arica
Pro Challenge, El Gringo, Chile
Jun 6-7 - Arnette Pro Junior presented by Jack's, 56th
St. Newport, Calif.
Jun 8-14 - WQS SriLankan Airlines Pro, Pasta Point-Maldives
June 12-20 - NSSA Championships and Explorer Championships,
Salt Creek, Dana Point
June 17-20 - NSSA National Airshow Championships, Salt
Creek, Dana Point
Jun 20-21 - PLA Longboard/ Gidget Pro, Huntington Beach
June 23-37 - NSSA Open & Explorer Championships,
Lower Trestles, San Clemente
Jun 27-28 - WWQS Mr Price Pro Ballito, South Africa
June 28 - NSSA Awards Banquet, Huntington Hyatt Regency,
Jun 27-July 5 - WCT Hang Loose Santa Catarina Pro, Brazil
Jun 29-July 5 - WQS South Africa Mr Price Pro Ballito,
Abbreviations: WCT: World Championship Tour;WQS:
World Qualifying Series;WWQS: Women's World Qualifying Series; NSSA: National
Scholastic Surfing Association)
RULES: Like a surf contest,
points in the Orange County Surfer of the Year contest come in waves. Voters
can cast 10 votes per hour for their favorite surfer - all for one or break
it up among several contestants. This allows contestants to ride a late
swell of votes into the lead. Voting is only allowed online at ocregister.com.
The contest is not a scientific poll.
CREDITS: Project manager: Jennifer Davis. Words by Gary
A. Warner, Laylan Connelly and Fred Swegles. Contest design by Rick Ngoc
Ho and Cindy Murphy; Geoff Boaz, Matthew Ralston and Anne Gillette. Video
by Michele Cardon and Jim Zisk. A special thanks to Richelle Gregorio and
A special thanks to those who helped us compile the list of this year's
nominated surfers: Peter "PT" Townend, ASP, WSA, and Surfing America.