Is Australia about to lose a QS6000?
If there’s one certain thing about professional surfing it’s that it is constantly riding a wave of uncertainty. Now it seems that wave has rolled into Manly, with a Manly Daily Report stating the State Government has pulled funding for the Australian Open of Surfing.
It is believed that Destination NSW and Tourism Minister Adam Marshall pulled the money after the event failed to meet previously set performance targets.
As this goes live Manly MP James Griffin is busy organising a meeting with surfing leaders and government officials in an attempt to try and salvage the QS6000 event, which is reported to inject more than $2.5 million into the local economy.
It is also reported that Northern Beaches Council was taken by surprise by the news, having already committed $400,000 in support of this year’s event.
Mr. Griffin told the Manly Daily that, “Surfing is an important part of our local culture and identity and having a top- notch professional surfing event is important for my community and I’m here to fight for an event to stay.”
Greens Sport Spokesman Justin Field also jumped in to defend the event.
“When the NSW Government is spruiking huge surpluses and spending $1.6 billion on upgrading sports stadiums in Sydney, the Manly community are right to ask why their event got the chop.”
While we’re not sure whether there’d be many surfers on the Qualifying Tour who would miss surfing the small onshore waves constantly dished up by the Australian Open, it’s certainly a big blow to Australian surfers looking to qualify for the tour. The points available at home now halved.
Updates to follow …