Surf pro sta­tus buoys boss

Augusta Margaret River Times - - Front Page - Therese Col­man

Surf­ing WA chief ex­ec­u­tive Mark Lane is “qui­etly con­fi­dent” the Mar­garet River Drug Aware Pro will have its two-year con­tract ex­tended be­yond 2019.

Mr Lane re­cently at­tended the World Surf League Part­ner Sum­mit in Cal­i­for­nia in Septem­ber to dis­cuss the fu­ture of the event af­ter fears sur­faced it would be axed from the world tour.

“Be­fore the sum­mit, I had al­ready been in touch with the WSL, af­ter the con­tract ex­ten­sion to dis­cuss the fu­ture of the event be­yond the next two years,” he said.

“We aren’t tak­ing the con­tract ex­ten­sion lightly. We will do ev­ery­thing we can to see this event be­yond 2019. De­spite all that is hap­pen­ing, we are qui­etly con­fi­dent that it will go ahead.”

Tourism Min­is­ter Paul Pa­palia an­nounced the Pro’s two-year ex­ten­sion in Au­gust, but said the out­look of the event be­fore the ex­ten­sion was dire.

Mr Pa­palia said the State Govern­ment saw the con­tract ex­ten­sion as im­por­tant.

“The State Govern­ment, through Tourism WA, is con­tin­u­ously in talks with Surf­ing WA and the WSL on the fu­ture of the Mar­garet River Drug Aware Pro,” he said.

“We are proud to spon­sor this high-pro­file in­ter­na­tional event as it presents mas­sive tourism ben­e­fits to the State.”

Tourism WA also had a rep­re­sen­ta­tive at the Cal­i­for­nian sum­mit, and ex­ec­u­tive direc­tor Saskia Do­herty said the group was in on­go­ing talks with the WSL.

“We were rep­re­sented at the 2017 WSL Part­ner Sum­mit to re­it­er­ate our sup­port of the event’s fu­ture in WA and our will­ing­ness to work proac­tively with the WSL and its part­ners to lever­age our in­volve- ment with the world cham­pi­onship tour,” she said. Mr Lane said it was too soon for all par­ties in­volved to be work­ing on spe­cific de­tails for a con­tract ex­ten­sion.

“We need to fo­cus first on here and now,” he said. “How­ever, hav­ing a Tourism WA rep­re­sen­ta­tive at the sum­mit gave me con­fi­dence for the path we are on.”

The Times pre­vi­ously re­ported one of Aus­tralia’s three tour legs would be axed by the WSL.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.