Everything went off without a hitch at the first ever Pismo Beach Open professional surf contest, held Nov. 17-19 at the Pismo Pier, except of course the small waves were a disappointment.
Ventura surfer, Cory Arrambide won the event, which is part of the Qualifying Series of surf meets in the World Surfing League series. It was Arrambide’s first ever win on the tour.
“It feels really good to get a win finally and it’s about time I did after so many years of getting close,” Arrambide told WSL’s online magazine (see: www.worldsurfleague.com). “I was trying not think too much because that’s my worst enemy at events, so I just put no pressure on myself for this one.
“I based my whole year off the first two QS 6,000s in Australia and had a shocker, so to cap off this year with a win is amazing.”
Second place went to Ian Gentil of Maui, Hawaii. Semi finalists were (third place) Taro Watanabe of Malibu and Kilian Garland of Santa Barbara. Only the top two earned a payday.
Some 88 surfers from all over the globe took part in this first ever pro surfing event in SLO County.
The event was sponsored by Dignity Health, and organized by Andy McKay of Pismo Beach under a new non-profit group, “Surfers of Tomorrow,” who said after the contest that he hopes to bring another WSL event to Morro Bay next March.
He is currently looking for sponsors for that event, which would be held at Morro Rock and streamed to world over the Internet, as was the Pismo Beach event. He also is also planning an event in Ventura in April 2018. He plans to return to Pismo Beach next October and wants to hold another surf contest in Santa Cruz next summer.
Photos by Ben Schutzer, www.runamuckphotography.com