Rip Curl trying to hold Search Contest at Lennox Point.

Steve,be carefull of making claims of corruption etc in a public domain as it could come back and bite you…From what info is available here in Torquay…on the grapevine…RC have officially lodged expressions in at least 5 areas…I understand your frustration.don’t alienate your self from any meaningfull discussions in putting your emotion ahead of Fact and Logic…they are still searching! If there is not permission from the traditional custodians of the land…there actions are very un-Australian…

Maurice , if you read my post carefully you will see I am not making allegations of corruption.

I am saying the sneaky and covert way Rip Curl are going about this, and their offers to council of “improvements” are leaving them open to these kinds of allegations.

By an open and transparent process, with community involvement, they would come off looking alot better.

This backroom, backdoor approach breeds gossip, ill-feeling and mistrust amongst the community.

It’s bad business practice for Rip Curl.

The guys who are on the committee who have worked so hard to make Lennox a surfing reserve are aghast at this proposal and I respect their opinions a whole lot more than some marketing guy from Rip Curl.

Anyway, the press are involved now, so if I was marketing manager for Rip Curl I would be extremely careful that there is nothing they are doing that will stink when placed out in the open for public scrutiny.

For chrissakes, there are countries in West Africa with great surf that would kill to have an event like this there…that would be much more inline with the Search ideal.



Their first choice was Gnaraloo in North west WA…that got skittled by strong community opposition…

then they considered Raglan…don’t know the story there but I imagine it was the same scenario.

Now they are trying to hoist it onto us…

this could be a PR disaster for Rip Curl if they continue in the face of community opposition.


The great thing about Gnaraloo is that the break is on a pastoral station, the station owner said no after being approached by the regulars at the break…

When it comes to ownership eg: council land, all they see is $$$$…

Get onto the local councillors and attend the council meetings en masse…

That sometimes works but you can’t always control the “purple circle”…

The word from Rip Curl USA is Bali, but as you know surfers are notorious for spreading rumors. If I am wrong then I am guilty of it too. I don’t think the ASP will hold a contest anywhere there is a travel advisory, I do not know if Indo is still on the list. Thats why they canceled Tavarua last year.

As someone mentioned before you’d think they’d at the least try and go find something alittle bit more “out of the way”.

I heard a rumor that they were looking at having it at Ponto. PONTO!!! of all places here in So Cal. It was just rediculous for me to even fathom the thought that RipCurl would even contemplate something so asinine. Maybe you’ll be fortunate enough to laugh at it as well when the truth comes out.

Hey Elewis, i think you are right on Bali for this year. They are trying to line up Lennox for next year.

I sent a long letter to the local paper and they interviewd me…it was front page news here so the issue is big.

Hopefully Rip Curl will now start looking for a more suitable location.

To me Pro contests are like big music festivals…they do provide enjoyment to a lot of people but they also have a massive impact and should only be held in suitable locations.

Lennox Point belongs to all and is not the spot for a major pro event.


Pro surfing tour bid for Lennox Head



SURF giant Rip Curl wants to bring the worlds best surfers to compete at Lennox Head in a one-off Professional World Tour event.

The brands international advertising and marketing chairman, Neil Ridgway, this week confirmed he had approached Ballina Shire Council about hosting superstars Mick Fanning, Kelly Slater and the worlds top 45 surfers off Lennox Point in the Rip Curl Pro Search.

The councils general manager, Paul Hickey, confirmed he had met with Ridgway last Friday, but declined to reveal any details or comment on the matter until he had received a written proposal.

Ridgway said he could not reveal a time for the event, sources suggest the target is next year.

We are still in the initial consultation, and it is quite a detailed process because we want to lay the right foundations and make all of the groups happy, he said.

We need to consider environmental groups and convince them that an event of this size will not be detrimental to the area, and in fact well improve things when were gone.

The Rip Curl Pro Search is the only event on the ASP World Tour that changes location each year.

It has previously been held off Reunion Island off the coast of Madagascar, in Mexico, and Chile.

A surf contest of this size would attract thousands of visitors and pump millions of dollars into the local economy during the12-day contest.

And Lennox Head underwater cinematographer said that was why residents should protest against the plans he believes will exploit the local environment.

For two weeks there will be massive infrastructure set up at Lennox Point, including large, semi-permanent buildings, sponsor buoys in the water, food vendors etc, he said.

For two weeks, if the contest is approved, Rip Curl can control who enters and surfs the point, excluding recreational surfers by such means as cops on jet skis patrolling the water.

For two weeks, hordes of people will trample all over the point, littering and eroding the tracks. Traffic will be a nightmare.

Theres a very good reason Lennox Point has never hosted a professional surf contest: People come here to surf away from the hostility, aggro, and crowded vibe which professional competition engenders.

also said he doubted that it would be a one-off event.

There has been strong community worry it would open the door for Lennox to become a professional surf venue, he said. The surf at Lennox Point belongs to all and should not be allowed to become the exclusive domain of the elite few. But Ridgway said he had no desire to milk the local environment or change the surfing climate for the benefit of Rip Curls business.

We want to work with local surfers, environmental groups and shire to put on a world-class surfing event that everyone can enjoy, he said.

I grew up in Maclean. I know the area well. I know the surfers well, and were always looking for world-class waves with the right type of people who would be open to a world-class event.

Ridgway said Rip Curl was still working on a proposal for Ballina Council and would submit it as soon as possible.

Were really excited about the potential. We just want it to be a really positive thing for the region.

“The Search”, sounds like it should be held at a remote location that is so remote that it is only surfed while the tour is there and remains empty the rest of the year. Judges on the beach with lawn chairs. Camera guys so we can watch it online. Competitors stringing up hammocks to stay in. I think the idea sounded great at the beginning, but after Mexico was over run and now Lennox head (for next year anyway) a spot which is pristine with nothing to gain from the tour “the Search” has lost its luster. Bali is probably a great place for a CT, but it is not exactly what come to my mind when I think of the concept. Maybe Ripcurl should get Tom Curren and Frankie O. and go back to making the videos again instead.

Don’t know how the hell you managed to find that E-pac but I love the classic marketing speak from Neil Ridgeway.

He says “we want to work with local surfers, environmental groups and shire etc etc…”

Lennox Point is in a marine Park and is in fact a sanctuary Zone… I rang the manager of the marine Park and he hadn’t even heard of the contest…great consultation Rip Curl…

I rang the Bunjum Co-Operative , the traditional owners of the land and they hadn’t been consulted either.

Come on Ridgeway, a few beers with the head of the boardriders clubs hardly entails working with local surfers and environmental groups…the whole thing is very shoddy and a complete joke of the whole Search concept.

I think they should consider Liberia.