Yesterday evening the WSL broadcast the first ever longboard comp at The Surf Ranch. A neat 45-minute package, it was a made-for-TV look at longboarding under the lights in Lemoore. And that’s the best part of competition in a surf park: With the wave available on-demand, the WSL was able to run the entire contest in advance, cut out the slow moments (and the time in-between waves), add commentary, and boil 8-hours of surfing into under an hour.
Is this the future of broadcasting surf contests in a pool? Maybe. The biggest drawback to past events at The Surf Ranch is the amount of hours required to run, and the time in-between action. So why not run every Surf Ranch event in advance, keep the results secret, and broadcast the highlights at a pre-set time a few days later? That’s a question the WSL is likely considering as they re-imagine the Championship Tour for 2021 and beyond.
Above is a replay of the full-broadcast from the Cuervo Surf Ranch Classic, won by Justin Quintal and Soleil Errico. The groomed walls at the Surf Ranch provided a beautiful canvas for traditional longboarding, and the well-produced 45-minute package is a great way to consume a surf competition.