The World Surf League (WSL) North America Qualifying Series (QS) is set for its return to the East Coast with two staple events back on schedule. First, the iconic 1st Street Jetty of Virginia Beach, Virginia, will host the the Coastal Edge East Coast Surfing Championships produced by the Virginia Beach Jaycees QS 1,000 and run August 23 - 27.
Competitors will then head to North Carolina’s esteemed Outer Banks coastline for the WRV Outer Banks Pro presented by Pacifico QS 1,000 beginning August 30 - September 3.
This marks Stop No. 2 and No. 3 of the 2023/2024 season toward qualification for the 2024 Challenger Series.“Regionally, we’ve had a few months of an event break period, so it’s nice to get back on the road on the East Coast with these two long-standing contests,” said North America Regional Manager Meg Bernardo.
“We want to thank Coastal Edge, the Virginia Beach Jaycees and WRV for their continued unwavering support of our surfers and WSL North America. These events continue to provide an invaluable platform for our regional competitors looking to breakthrough in the sport.”
Stop No. 2 of the 2023/24 WSL North America QS season brings competitors back to Virginia Beach, coinciding with the historic East Coast Surfing Championships, now in its 61st year of competition, to vie for 1,000 points. Coastal Edge and Virginia Beach Jaycees have combined forces once more to welcome back this event and usher in a new era of competition that they look to build upon.
Going back to 2011, the QS has witnessed a multitude of winners from now Championship Tour (CT) veterans to established regional threats. Former event winners Luke Gordon (USA) and, Virginia Beach's own, Michael Dunphy (USA), 2022 runner-up Owen Moss (USA), Challenger Series contender Zoe Benedetto (USA), and reigning North America Pro Junior Regional Champion Talia Swindal (USA) highlight some of the field returning to Virginia Beach alongside a plethora of North America’s top men and women.
“Since 1962, the best surfers on the East Coast converge in Virginia Beach to battle it out at the Coastal Edge East Coast Surfing Championships, the longest continuously ran surf competition in the world," said Coastal Edge ECSC General Manager Tony Pelloni. "The non-profit volunteers and proud owners of the event, the Virginia Beach Jaycees, have been mainly in the shadows producing their largest fundraiser and give-back to their community. This year, a unique opportunity allowed them to share the spotlight with epic long term sponsor Coastal Edge. It’s important to offer the best surfers in North America a chance to share the historic surfing culture of Virginia Beach, the birthplace of East Coast surfing.”
The region’s upper-echelon then head to the renowned coastline of Outer Banks and will take on the lineup of Jennette’s Pier, Nags Head, to build upon their result from Virginia Beach. Returning to the schedule in 2014, this event has provided a highlight reel of barrels and high-performance surfing. The women make their big return for a fourth appearance with Finalists Benedetto and Noah Klapp (DEU) looking to earn key wins in 2023 alongside defending, and two-time WSL event winner, Dunphy, 2021 event victor Taro Watanabe (USA), and more.
“We're excited to see the world famous Outer Banks sandbars taking shape again up and down the beach,” said President of WRV LG Shaw. “Jennette's Pier is really looking like it can turn on with the fall swells on the horizon. We love being able to show the surfing world what the Outer Banks is all about. Its charm, its charter, and it's energy. When it turns on, it really is one of the best events of the year."
The Coastal Edge East Coast Surfing Championships will run August 23 - 27.