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6.0 Lowers Pro Becomes First Ever ASP 6-Star PRIME on U.S. Mainland

Monday, March 23rd, 2009

The 6.0 Lowers Pro has upgraded to an Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) World Qualifying Series (WQS) 6-Star PRIME for 2009 making it the first WQS PRIME-rated event ever on Mainland U.S.A. The prestigious event, one of only three 6-Stars on the ASP North America Tour and only eight 6-Star PRIMES around the world on the 2009 schedule, will take over Lower Trestles, San Clemente, Calif. for five days of competition from April 28th to May 2nd. A field of 128 men will vie for a $145,000 prize purse, including $20,000 for first place, and the most WQS ratings points possible.

“Elevating the 6.0 Lowers Pro to a 6-Star event is a huge benefit for all North American surfers and Nike 6.0 is beyond excited to be able to facilitate this,” says Nike 6.0 surf mentor, Jason Kenworthy. “Lowers provides a world-class stage for U.S. surfers to perform and secure critical tour points. This is huge.”

Running concurrently, the ASP Grade-2 Oakley Pro Junior will see 48 juniors (20 years and younger) battling for a $10,000 prize purse and two coveted qualifying spots into the Oakley Pro Junior Global Challenge Finals. This will be the only U.S. qualifier for the prominent event, which gained notoriety last year due to its massive prize purse, professional format, and high caliber of qualifier location selections.

Ben Bourgeois (Carlsbad, CA) won the inaugural ASP WQS 4-Star 6.0 Lowers Pro last year beating out an impressive list of fellow finalists: Frederick Patacchia (North Shore, HAW), Joel Centeio (North Shore, HAW) and Patrick Gudauskas (San Clemente, CA).

Although there has never been a shortage of talent on tap at the event, this year’s upgrade from a 4-Star to a 6-Star PRIME has upped the ante, ensuring the talent will be even more remarkable and giving North American surfers a crucial opportunity to earn significant points towards qualifying for the World Tour.

Originating in 2007, PRIME is the highest possible ASP rating only given to competition venues considered to be at “prime” locations. Around the world, only eight locations have been identified as worthy of the rank in 2009. Infamous Lower Trestles, known for it’s perfect wide-open faces and idyllic California setting, is the first and only Mainland U.S. location to ever warrant the grade.

Although the 6-Star PRIME prize purse is the same as for a regular 5- or 6-Star event, the field is restricted to 128 competitors, and the ratings points are increased substantially. A 6-Star PRIME allocates 3,500 points for first place compared to the 2,500 offered for a basic 6-Star event.

Prior to 2008 when Nike 6.0 took over the title sponsor position, the storied Lower Trestles event had crowned victors including nine-time ASP World Champion Kelly Slater (Cocoa Beach, FL), three-time ASP World Champion Andy Irons (North Shore, HAW), Rob Machado (Encinitas, CA), Shane Beschen (San Clemente, CA), C.J. Hobgood (Melbourne Beach, FL) and Tom Curren (Santa Barbara, CA), to name a few.

In 2008, wildcard Sebastian Zietz (Hanalei, HAW) claimed the Oakley Pro Junior title over finalists Jason Harris (Huntington Beach, CA), Travis Beckmann (Vero Beach, FL) and Dusty Payne (Lahaina, HAW), earning him a spot into the inaugural Oakley Pro Junior Global Challenge Final in Bali.

This year, the Oakley Pro Junior at Lower Trestles will be the only North American qualifier for the Oakley Pro Junior Global Challenge, which has become the hot ticket destination for the world’s juniors this year. That, combined with the merging of the ASP North America and ASP Hawaii regional ratings for the 2009 Pro Junior division, suggests this event will pull in the best of the best.

Both the 6.0 Lowers Pro and Oakley Pro Junior will be webcast live for all five days of competition with legendary personalities Dave Stanfield, Peter Mel, Pat O’Connell, and other surprise guests, behind the microphone.

For more information about the 6.0 Lowers Pro, visit www.nike6lowerspro.com. For more about the Oakley Pro Junior, visit www.oakleyprojunior.com.

The 6.0 Lowers Pro and Oakley Pro Junior wouldn’t be possible without the generous support of sponsors. During these tough economic times, their commitment is even more appreciated. A special thank you goes out to presenting sponsors Nike 6.0 and Oakley, co-sponsor Red Bull, and media sponsors Surfer (surfermag.com), Surfing (surfingthemag.com), WaveWatch.com and FUEL TV.

About Nike 6.0:
Welcome to Nike 6.0 … a multi-action sports brand supporting the next generation. Our mission is simple: Instigate, inspire and elevate the next generation. The barriers that once existed between action sports have been reduced by those who skate, surf, and ride with equal and inclusive passion. 6.0 is dedicated to this new crop of athletes through our multi-sport team, innovative product, and events. From the streets to the surf, from the dirt to the park, Nike 6.0 symbolizes the creativity and progression inherent in the DNA of action sports. www.nike6.com

About Oakley, Inc.
Oakley, Inc. designs, manufactures and distributes high-performance sunglasses, prescription lenses and frames, goggles and technology-enabled eyewear that utilize the company’s High Definition Optics® (HDO®), a collective platform of patented technologies that offer unbeatable optical performance. The company also produces technical and active apparel, footwear and accessories. For more information, please visit the company’s Web site at www.oakley.com.

About Source Interlink Media’s Action Sports Group (ASG):
Reaching more than two million enthusiasts, Source Interlink Media’s Action Sports Group (ASG) is the dominant force in the action sports and adventure sports arenas. In addition to publishing leading lifestyle publications such as Surfer, Surfing, Snowboarder, Skateboarder, Bike, Powder and Canoe & Kayak, Source Interlink Media’s ASG delivers a cutting-edge network of online properties, events and television programming.

Posted in Press Releases | No Comments »

Getting in the Loop’d

Monday, March 9th, 2009

Ever since I was little, growing up with skaters and surfers alike, my friends always wanted to find ways to get noticed and obtain sponsorships in the hope of one day turning pro. I cant tell you the countless hours we stayed at the beach, went to every contest, hung out and the skate parks just to see if anyone would take notice. These days with all the social networks available, there is an endless amount of exposure you can get if you just know how to market yourself right. But if you are just putting yourself out there on YouTube, Myspace, Facebook or what not, how are you sure that the key people in the action sports industry will find you. Where can you go to meet people who can point you in the right direction in your quest to someday be a sponsored rider?


One site that I’ve been following and is seemingly still pretty new to many in the industry is the Loop’d Network. Formerly Sponsorhouse.com, the Loop’d network has set it self up as not only a platform for individuals to get in contact and interact with companies, but to join communities and make friends with others that have the same love for their sport and lifestyle. The have communities for a whole spectrum of action sports from skate to surf to snow and everything in between.

The site, which recently underwent a rebranding effort, really focuses on self-promotion so you can #1 get noticed and connected with participating brands who are constantly on the lookout for new team athletes. Oakley, Nike 6.0, Monster Energy, and Fox are just a few of the brands putting themselves in the mix. Loop’d has been so successful that many of these brands have been participating on the site for years. Some even have dedicated websites setup for their hosted communities on Loop’d. From a business perspective, it’s a fascinating model that’s a win-win for both the advertising brands and Loop’d. For brands, they can create their own branded micro communities that have instant access to tap into the larger targeted audience that makes up the Loop’d community.

The site not only is a place to gather with kindred spirits and brands, they encourage you to come back by hosting numerous contests and supporting their partnered brands by linking up to their online stores. And guess who I found on Loop’d’s Myspace page, 5ones’ very own Ruben ‘Studdard’ Najera.

ruben najera on loopd

Posted in Industry | 2 Comments »

Shaun White’s Private Halfpipe

Friday, February 20th, 2009

Not that we ever doubted the rumors of Shaun White having a private halfpipe hidden deep in the Colorado mountains, but with the recent pictures floating around the web, that rumor is now confirmed.

shaun white secret halfpipe

The pipe sits at an elevation of 12,300 feet, making it the highest pipe ever. It cost over $500k to construct and was funded by both Red Bull and Oakley. No surprise that Red Bull is behind something like this. Red Bull has also rented Shaun a house in a nearby town and pays for a heli to transport him up there everyday. Not to mention covering the cost of avi control (take a look above the pipe). Apparently the pipe is open to all Red Bull and Oakley riders, not just Shaun.

The other day when we wrote about Shaun White making an estimated $9 million per year, we apparently were only telling half the story. The number is obviously a lot higher when you consider all the amazing perks he gets. Between the house, the pipe, the heli trips, and avi control… that alone has gotta add at least another milli for Mr. White.

Forget being a pro ball player, becoming a professional snowboarder is the new dream.

Posted in Snow | 6 Comments »

Oakley House Sends Aloha From the North Shore

Tuesday, December 2nd, 2008

oakley logoAfter last year’s weaker-than-normal season, the firing start to the 2008/2009 year on the seven-mile miracle has everyone pumped. Oakley just put out their first edition of a video series posted straight from the Oakley team house on the beach at Pipeline. They have assembled themselves a smooth little line-up of riders and that should make these little slices of eye-candy something to look forward to throughout the year.


Posted in Surfing | No Comments »

Dusty Payne Claims Oakley Pro Junior Challenge in Bali (Video)

Tuesday, October 14th, 2008

It had been more than eight years since Hawaii’s 19 yr. old surfing prodigy Dusty Payne last won an event. Although he’s finished near the top many times over this span, most recently with his 3rd place finish at the Oakley Pro Junior Challenge this past May at Trestles, the highly-touted Payne has been unable to find his way to the top of the podium. That streak came to an abrupt end today as Dusty surfed like a seasoned pro on his way to a huge victory at the Oakley Pro Junior Challenge in Bali. “I haven’t won an event in so many years,” said Payne. “It’s the best feeling in the world. That’s why I still compete.”

dusty payne oakley pro junior

Keramas was firing near 6-8 ft. surf for the final, and the chance to surf the flawless right was as equally rewarding for Payne as the $20,000 prize Payne will be taking back to Maui. “It’s the best contest I’ve ever surfed in,” said Payne,”It’s been my dream to surf a contest at Keramas. The waves were just so good, I’m so stoked with how it turned out.”

Almost as stoked with the results of the event was runner-up Marc Lacamore from France. Lacamore, a goofy-footer from Hossegor, jumped out to an early lead in the final but was unable to withstand Dusty’s methodical shredding at Keramas. Although he won’t be going home with the win, Lacamore was all smiles after the event and received $7,500 from Oakley for his efforts. “I’m really happy right now,” said Lacamore. “Although I didn’t win I still posted a really good result against the world’s best juniors. Dusty has been surfing amazingly all week, so to go up against him in the final was incredible.”
All of the boys put on quite a show in Bali and our hats are off to every one of them. Congratulations to Hawaii’s Dusty Payne on his impressive victory at the Oakley Pro Junior Challenge in Bali!

If you’ve yet to see just why it is Dusty Payne is turning heads with every wave he takes off on, take a look at this dirty little diddy from the Surfline Rising Stars series. The Nike 6.0/Volcom/Body Glove ripper is pure fire when he surfs!

Posted in Surfing | No Comments »

Payne Being Felt at Oakley Pro Junior Global Challenge in Bali

Tuesday, October 14th, 2008

For someone taking part in only his second event in the 2008 year since coming off a major knee injury, Maui’s Dusty Payne is doing quite alright. Payne has unleashed his arsenal on Keramas and now sits as the favorite heading into the quarterfinal rounds of the Oakley Pro Junior Global Challenge taking place in Bali. One of the faces of a seemingly brilliant future for Hawaii surfing, the 19 yr. old Payne didn’t appear to be feeling the pressure of surfing for the $20,000 payoff bring offered up by Oakley (the richest ever for a junior event). “Everything is a bonus from here,” he said. “There’s no pressure on me. I’m surfing with my friends and having a blast. I can’t wait for tomorrow.”

Payne found himself in a hole during his highly anticipated battle with Australia’s Lincoln Taylor. Dusty kept his cool and put down scores of 8.90 and 8.80 in the 6 ft. surf, and in doing so he sealed himself a spot in the quarterfinals. “Lincoln had a really good start and got the first good wave of the heat,” said Payne. “I got one right after him and stuffed it up. After about 10 minutes I finally got one good score, so I just kept busy and kept that rhythm right through to the end of the heat.”

Dusty faces South African Nick Godfrey in the final heat of the quarter’s tomorrow. Shaun Joubert, Miguel Popo, Marc Lacamore, Made ‘Garut’ Widiartha, Peterson Crisanto, and Mitch Crews round rest of the Oakley Pro Junior field.

* In its inaugural year, the 2008 Oakley Pro Junior Global Challenge has travelled the globe since February. With a total of six events for junior surfers to qualify, the Global Challenge Championship will connect four days of competition during a 10-day waiting period, October 7-17 in Bali, Indonesia. The series kicked off at North Stradbroke, Queensland, Australia, followed by, New Pier, Durban, South Africa; Lower Trestles, San Clemente, Calif., USA; Itamambuca Beach, Ubatuba City, Sao Paulo, Brazil; Shidashita Point, Chiba, Japan and Grand Plage, Lacanua, Gironde, France.

Photo 1: Brazil’s Peterson Crisanto takes to the sky over the Keramas tarmac en route to defeating Hawaii’s Kai Barger in their round three face-off at the Oakley Pro Junior Global Challenge at Keramas in Bali, Indonesia today. Image: Russ Hennings

dusty payne oakley pro junior
Photo 2: Hawaiian ace Dusty Payne (Maui) staking his claim as the surfer to beat, exploding to life en route to eliminating Australian Lincoln Taylor in their round three face-off. Image: Russ Hennings

Posted in Surfing | No Comments »

Oakley Arctic Challenge Brings Out the Best in the Game

Sunday, March 2nd, 2008

oakley arctic challengeOakley knows how to throw down a sick comp as the Arctic Challenge brought out the best in the game. All the competitors were charging in hopes of taking home top honors but it was Kevin Pearce who ultimately was the man who got it done. Boosting huge double grab 720’s was his ticket to success.

Terje Haakonsen, Nicolas Muller, and Shayne Pospisil were a few of the other snowboarders on hand who were pushing the limits and going huge. Terje was absolutely killing the quarter pipe going 8 meters out and stomping backside-3s. That’s no surprise as last year it was Terje who set the world record with an absolutely insane 9.8 meter (32.5 ft) backside-3.

Still on the subject of Terje, it was him and Nicolas Muller who were both floating stylish McTwists that were a crowd favorite. The action was pumping and Oakley was hailed for putting on one of their best comps ever. It was a big night for Oakley and the 5,000 screaming fans that showed up for the show.

It would be wrong for me to write this post and not give a special shout-out to Shayne Pospisil who definitely brought his ‘A’ game. He was the only rider that landed all five of his final runs. He was absolutely on fire and he threw something different on each one of his five final runs, making sure to spin both front and backside. It’s really refreshing when riders mix it by throwing something different on each run.

Overall, the theme of the night seemed to be style, style, style. This made it a great chance for spectators to really get into the action by watching their favorite riders throw-down in a smooth fashion instead of trying the most technically difficult tricks. I personally would much rather see a stylish double grab 720 (the winning trick) than a flailed out 1260. What do you think – do you prefer stylish tricks or technical?

Oakley also has a video recap on their site, check it out.


Posted in Snow | No Comments »

Oakley HOLESHOT Watch

Tuesday, July 24th, 2007

Oakley HOLESHOTToday Oakley announced the release of HOLESHOT, a Swiss-made watch the blends Oakley’s original style with Swiss precision. The HOLESHOT is inspired by Oakley athletes for the active lifestyle of action sports athletes.

There are two editions of the HOLESHOT that will be available. One includes a six-hand analog display with a chronograph that offers the ability to measure cumulative time, intermediate time and split time to a tenth of a second. The second is a reduced-scale version with a three-hand analog display. Both versions of HOLESHOT are made with a durable stainless steel case and a rubber band. A dual-seal crown protects the case against water pressure equivalent to 330 feet (100 meters) beneath the surface.

Oakley continues to innovate and roll out solid new products in both eyewear and other accessories including apparel. Unfortunately they’re an example of a huge company that hasn’t managed to stay ‘core’. That’s what happens when a company goes public and has shareholders to please and can’t help themselves from selling out. To Oakley’s credit, their sales were up 29% in q2, thanks in part to all the ‘barneys’ wearing their shades.


Posted in Brands | 1 Comment »

Oakley Special Edition Artist Eyewear Series

Tuesday, July 17th, 2007

There seems to be some very common trends happening in the apparel industry lately. One that I’ve noticed recently is companies collaborating with artists to launch limited-edition collections. Today Oakley jumped on that bandwagon with the announcement of a new limited-release eyewear series called the Oakley Artist Eyewear Series. The series is a focused extension of the company’s SQUARE O collection. It includes custom design treatments by influential artists, musicians and designers from around the world.

Oakley SquareThe collection features unique Oakley designs that are inspired by the lifestyles of its athletes as well as their cultural influences including music, art and fashion. Oakley president Colin Baden says.

Influential artists, musicians and designers will use some of our most sought-after frame styles and contribute original graphical frame treatments, imaginatively rendered logos, and logo icons formed from special materials to create unique eyewear editions.

Oakley has also developed a proprietary multi-layer print process to achieve the highest level of graphic resolution possible. Each of the artist series will be available in limited quantities and only available at exclusive retailers. Oakley expects to release an ultra-exclusive Collectors Edition once every quarter.


Posted in Brands | 2 Comments »

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